Banbury United Under 18's v Stafford Juniors
By Del Randall
Banbury United Under 18's completed "back to back" wins for the first time this season with a 4 - 3 home win over Stafford Rangers. After last weeks goal feast at Bush Vikings this was always going to be a different type of game and this is how it turned out,. Stafford looked the brighter and stronger side in the early exchanges and it was no surprise when they took the lead after 10 minutes. Banbury allowed the opposition to much time and were backing off when Stafford broke and scored with a fine shot into the top of the goal. Stafford were still looking the better side, but Banbury were given a lifeline back into the game 10 minutes later when Ryan MacDonald was brought down in the area and it was Ryan himself who stepped up to take the spot kick and scored to level things up. This might have been a catalyst to Banbury getting on top in the game, but to be fair to Stafford they still made life difficult for Banbury and again it was no real surprise when they took the lead again eight minutes from half-time. Banbury may have counted themselves lucky to reach the interval only 2 - 1 down, so very much still in the game. However, their task was made that much harder early in the second half when Stafford capitalised on some poor communication from Banbury which allowed their player in to make it 3 - 1. To be fair to Banbury the response from the players was positive and probably for the first time just began to look the better side and they deservedly pulled one back when after some good work from Ryan MacDonald on the left ended with him pulling it back for Will Dee who was running in to score with a excellent finish under pressure from their defenders. Banbury then drew level shortly after when Harry Dunham, with probably the ball of the match, sent Ryan MacDonald away and his pace took him away and he completed the move with a fine finish. At 3 - 3 the game could have gone either way, but Banbury sneaked a hard earned win when a mistake by one of their defenders under pressure from Aodhan O'Sullivan, which allowed Aodhan in and he took his chance well with 15 minutes remaining. Banbury held on to earn the three points and our now up to 11th in the league. One final point, must give Stafford "top marks" for the amount of people they brought to watch the game and were a credit to their club.