football-3Sutton United 1 Met Police 2 (H/T 1-1)

A five-year unbeaten record finally came to an end recently as Sutton were finally beaten in the Surrey Under-18s Midweek Floodlit Cup.

The visitors had the better of the opening stages and should have taken the lead in only the 2nd minute when Gaddial Ntanto somehow fired wide from Jamie Autorino’s free-kick, but Sutton had a sniff at goal when Josh Danquah cut in from the left but shot straight at the keeper. Suicidal defending nearly resulted in Met Police scoring but Sutton had Jamie Blanco to thank as he cleared off the line, and as the game opened up Crossley Lema and Blanco both saw efforts narrowly miss the target.

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Met Police took the lead though when a cross from the right seemed to catch Sandile Wydler-Manzi off guard and he could only palm the ball into his own net. Sutton began to apply some intense pressure as they searched for an equaliser, as Darnell Austin initially saw a shot blocked then Jean-Luc Kinsaba’s effort was deflected wide, and from the resulting corner, Blanco’s cross was cleared as far as Kieran Rhule on the edge of the box who let fly with a powerful volley that gave the keeper no chance as it nestled in the bottom corner. Just before half-time, Danquah was denied by an excellent save as his shot from range looked to be flying into the top corner.

Blanco was on hand to clear off the line again from Ntanto’s header, and Luke Mitchell shot over the bar as the early second half chances fell the visitors’ way but Sutton again began to come more into the game and had another period of intense pressure seeing shot after shot blocked by some determined defending, most noticeably when Lema reacted first as Kinsaba’s cross was parried out as far as the six yard box. The winner came after 81 minutes though when John Gilbert drove at the Sutton defence and saw his shot initially saved by Wydler-Manzi, but the ball fell kindly to Prince Eze and he had a simple task of tapping into an unguarded net. Sutton again piled the pressure on and had their best chance of the half when Danquah touched out to Ayran Kugathas, and he flicked the ball back to Austin who blazed a shot high over the bar. The visitors were reduced to ten men with seconds to go as Dan Scantlebury saw red.