It was an early start for Cougars Under 8’s Blues away at Stotfold – but there were no such worries for the visitors as they were quickly into a nice early passing game and well on top in the first 10 minutes. The opener came from Cougars after a through ball from Oliver Tallis found Charlie Wicks tearing through for a one on one and he bravely beat the keeper to slot in to the bottom corner.

Craig Ivison’s Buntingford side chased a second with super wing-back play from Tom Flanagan; defending strongly then driving down the channel to win a corner, which when delivered fell to Sebbie Ivison who dispatched a crisp low shot into the bottom corner.

At the other end several saves from Thomas Deane in goal helped keep Stotfold at bay. Two saves came about in one on ones where he was off his line quickly to close and one long range strike plucked from the air.

In the second half, Oliver Tallis took over in goal and had an early key save to settle any nerves as Stotfold pressed. Goal line technology came into force on another save that threatened to creep over the line – but the decision kept Stotfold goal-less.

Coach Craig Ivison made some changes as the away side took some knocks but everyone contributed before Deane, now playing out field, reacted sharply to finish with his weaker foot after his initial shot was saved. Sam Dawson harried and pressed up front and was denied by the keeper on a couple occasions. With Joseph De Monte marshalling the right touch line the blues tried hard to the end. Charlie Wicks tried a Beckham like effort from his own half which went just inches wide before a Tom-Tom combination (Deane to Flanagan) also went close with the keeper beaten. As the second half came to an end Oliver Tallis was repeatedly in fine form with a string of stunning saves that earnt him the man of the match award.

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