Thursday 29th November - Sphinx Drive, Coventry
RESULT: Coventry Sphinx U18 5-2 Hinckley U18
15’ Alex Pearson (Coventry Sphinx)
19’ Dan Kelly (Coventry Sphinx)
34’ T’ahje Smith (Coventry Sphinx)
39’ Jelfs (Hinckley AFC)
54’ Owen Gorman (Coventry Sphinx)
75’ Owen Gorman (Coventry Sphinx)
89’ Hextall (Hinckley AFC)
If ever a game was to demonstrate the rapid development of a team then this was it. The last time this Youth team tasted defeat was in mid October when tonight’s visitors Hinckley beat Coventry Sphinx 4-2 in Ibstock. Since then, Coventry Sphinx have won all six of their matches with 41 goals scored and just 8 goals conceded. Hinckley were in 4th place ahead of tonight’s match but they were unable to halt the Sphinx goal scoring exploits. Three goals in a twenty minute spell during the first half put Sphinx in control and although Hinckley never gave up, Sphinx found more goals when they needed them to secure a 6th successive victory and maintain their 100% home league record.
Hinckley are one of the better teams in this Division and with Sphinx having already losing to them earlier in the season they knew they would have to perform tonight. Perform they did and they did it without key midfielder Callum Maspers who missed the game with injury.
Sphinx had an early scare when Hinckley threatened but the opening goal came from the right foot of Alex Pearson. Sphinx have been a threat from corners this season but PEARSON did this all on his own this time with his swinging corner kick evading everyone to nestle in the back of the visitors net. Sphinx were off and running and minutes later top scorer Dan Kelly gave us a reminder of how good he can be. KELLY had his back to goal on the edge of the box with defenders in very close proximity. The ball came in to him and a brilliant first touch took the ball under his spell. He turned and jinked his way through a crowded defence before burying his effort into the bottom corner. Kelly is on 27 goals now and that has got to be up there with the best.
T’ahje Smith is not one to be upstaged and he showcased his strengths with the next goal. SMITH dropped deep to collect the ball and then it was a demonstration of power, pace and skill that took him through the defence to thump in a tremendous solo effort. Sphinx would have been disappointed to have conceded from a set piece just before half time but that took nothing away from the quality of the goals that had given them the lead at the interval.
HALF TIME: COVENTRY SPHINX U18 3-1 HINCKLEY AFC U18
Hinckley still had plenty of life in them but within ten minutes of the second half Sphinx were celebrating a fourth goal after a fine header from Owen Gorman. Alex Pearson was the one to unlock the door with some great wing play but GORMAN still had to find an excellent finish to complete the move. Sphinx were playing some superb football but it’s their battling qualities that allow them to do that. Sphinx can mix it up when they have to and they stood strong against some tough tackling. They didn’t just stand strong; they put in some big tackles of their own as the contest developed in the second half.
A healthy lead was extended in the 75th minute and Owen Gorman had T’ahje Smith to thank for his second goal of the night. Smith was in a difficult position by the touchline but initially his strength gained him possession. He got his head down and drove into the box and on towards the by-line where it looked like he had hit a dead end but Smith wriggled his way free and delivered a fine ball for GORMAN to gratefully finish and effectively finish the game off.
Hinckley managed to nick a goal back as we approached full time but Sphinx were convincing winners in the end. Once again the substitutes came on and made telling contributions to the match. Midfielder Harvey Billing looks a real talent and his composure on the ball for an under 16s player is outstanding. Jamie Draper is another coming through from the under 16s and he looks a very good defender in the making. A word for Max Howard who I’m convinced would run through a brick wall if it meant he won a football match. The bravery in this young man is impressive to say the least. He’s brave on the ball and brave in the tackle. A fearless midfielder who led the side with the very best of examples tonight.
FULL TIME: COVENTRY SPHINX U18 5-2 HINCKLEY AFC U18
COVENTRY SPHINX TEAM: HART, MACK, FRASER, HOWARD ©, BULL, WHITEHOUSE, SEMWANGA, GORMAN, SMITH, PEARSON, KELLY.
Subs: KUATCHE, TURRELL, DRAPER, BILLING
The Coventry Sphinx Youth team are next in action on Thursday 6th December. They will be travelling to one of the leading teams in the Premier Division for a League Cup tie against Stratford Town. Kick off is 7.45pm at the DCS Stadium, Stratford, CV37 7BZ. Join us for this big cup tie and support the young guns of Coventry Sphinx.
Updated 11:57 - 30 Nov 2018 by Sharon Taylor