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Oxford beaten by 'faultless' U18s


AFC Bournemouth AFC Bournemouth

A 'faultless' display from the under-18s on Saturday paved the way to a strong 2-0 win over Oxford United on Saturday.

In challenging wet conditions Marcus Daws scored his first goal of the season just past the half-hour mark to send the Cherries in with a half-time lead against the U's.

It was then Daws' forward run and cross that allowed Euan Pollock to continue his fine goalscoring start to the campaign, the striker netting on his 18th birthday at Canford Arena.

Following the final whistle, manager Alan Connell expressed his pleasure at his side's performance with afcb.co.uk.

"Every time we play Oxford it's always a difficult game, they've got a lot of good players and they're well coached, so we knew it was going to be a tough task ahead of us.

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Goals | AFC Bournemouth U18s 2-0 Oxford United U18s

"I was delighted with our boys from minute one right the way through to the end. Our attitude was outstanding in every aspect in what was - and I don't say this lightly - a faultless display.

"We created a lot of chances in the first half hour, hit the crossbar through Euan, Marcus hit the post and it felt like a goal was coming.

"We passed the ball well with a good tempo and a good balance and then scored though a good goal from Marcus, his first goal for the club and he very much deserves it.

"We came in at 1-0 and spoke about the lessons from the first team on Friday night when they were very much in control against Coventry but conceded to go to 1-1. Oxford came out well in the second half and had a right go at us.

"Our discipline and composure to keep playing was particularly pleasing. Euan then killed it off with the second goal, he deserved it too for his efforts.

"We then saw the game out really well, still made chances and were very professional. I said to the boys afterwards that it was like watching a young men's team, it gave me such satisfaction to see their maturity and they've taken a lot of deserved praise today from the staff."

The collective strength of the side's showing made picking out individual star performers a tough task, with credit also warranted by the Cherries backline for a fourth straight clean sheet. 

"There wasn't one player who was below expectations," said Connell. "We have really high expectations because we've got good players and today they really showed what they can do individually and as a group.

"It's hard to single out people but I thought the midfield partnership of Jack Wadham and Matt Burgess was as good as I've seen for a long time today.

"The nature of football is that we dust ourselves off, get back to work on Monday and we have a good friendly at Brighton on Tuesday which we are excited about."

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