Mildenhall Town v Leyton Orient
Mildenhall Town’s Academy continued their preparation for the new season with a mixed group of under-12’s and under-13’s who went to London to take on another professional academy…
The day was structured in a mini tournament style with Leyton Orient and another local London club (MRFA) being involved. The boys played against both teams twice during the night and certainly showed a good account of themselves while on the road!
With major traffic problems effecting players arriving on time, the group managed to have enough on time to start the tournament without an issue.
And it didn't effect them either as in the first game, where they played Leyton Orient, but only narrowly lost. After the game, the boys sat down and all agreed that the standard wasn't up to their level and most came off quite disappointed, having only created a few chances. The main talking point was the need to be calmer on the ball!
With only a short break, the boys were straight back on to play against MRFA, where half way through the game they took the lead through a well worked goal. During the game, Mildenhall created many more chances in front of goal and were unfortunate not to score more. MRFA equalised late on with a counter attacking goal, which left Mildenhall no time to try and win the game. Nonetheless, the boys came off after that game with a real positive vibe having known they had played much, much better, which was the main aim!
The third game, against Leyton Orient again, matched the performance from the second game and got a much deserved point having played extremely well again. A high tempo, moving the ball quickly, creating angles to get on the ball and be effective going forward. Everyone came off pleased with how the group had played again, but there was a sense of disappointment that they thought they could have won the game!
The fourth and final game, against MRFA, was the strongest performance out of them all. Not just because Mildenhall won the game, but because of how well they battled, showed aggression to stay on the ball or win it back. That was added on top of what they had already done in the previous couple of games showing an outstanding intelligence to stay on the ball and move it efficiently.
Alfie Tate, who led the boys alongside Head of Youth Development, Jimmy Unwin, said this on the game: “I thought the boys were outstanding. The first game we were disappointed with, but the last three were excellent performances. We didn't come here to lose, but we didn't come here to sacrifice the way we want to play, just to beat a higher league opposition. I'm really proud of the boys who didn't lose the ideas of how we wanted to play, regardless of how the results were going at times. The boys deserve a lot of credit.”
Jimmy Unwin, Head of Youth Development said this: “The improvement the boys have shown from the first game they played together to the game last night is brilliant. I'm really pleased with the progress every individual has made and it's really positive as the season approaches.”