Adelaide United Youth snapped its four-game winless run with a vital 3-2 victory over Cumberland United at Summit Sport and Recreation Park in arctic conditions on Saturday.
The newly constructed facility in Mount Barker played host to an entertaining contest with the Young Reds coming from behind to claim a much-needed three points.
Mohamed Toure equalised right before half-time to cancel out Jumar Oakley’s opener with a sensational curling effort from outside the box which bounced into the far corner.
The second-half was very even but United would find the breakthrough in mesmerising, albeit fortuitous, fashion on 76 minutes.
Jonny Yull dispatched a deep corner which curled over the Cumberland goalkeeper and into the back of the net.
Ten minutes later, United made it 3-1 when a swift counter-attack caught the Foxes out.
Nestor Irankunda received the ball in his own half and dribbled forward before squaring to Yaya Dukuly and with just the gloveman to beat, he expertly lifted his finish into the top corner.
However, Cumberland were not done yet, creating a nervous end to the game after Oakley grabbed his second in clinical style a minute before stoppage time.
The result lifts the Young Reds into equal fourth on the table with 17 points, level with MetroStars and Sturt Lions.
Head of Youth Football Airton Andrioli was extremely pleased with his team’s response after conceding.
“As we normally do, we always send the boys out there to stick to our philosophy which is always looking to control the game, to dictate the rhythm of the game, control the moments and the boys played well – it was a tough game,” Andrioli said.
“Cumberland had lost their last two games and obviously they had a point to prove.
“The boys responded well, it was one of the games in which we imposed ourselves really well.
“We controlled possession, we had control of the moments of the game and created chances and didn’t give them many chances.
“We were able to score the goals that other times we sort of lack a little bit on the finishing.”
Andrioli believed Toure’s goal on the stroke of half-time was crucial in the victory, before stating he was delighted with how his team have been able to largely dominate matches this season.
“I think one positive to take from the games is that often we play against opponents now that are sitting quite deep,” he said.
“Considering we have a young squad it’s really something that I’m very pleased with.
“I’ve said many times this team that’s playing now could be playing in the under 18s competition to put things into perspective.
“So it’s a really young group and when we look at the games we play, opponents are defending quite deep.
“Cumberland was defending with five players in front of the box and making it very compact.
“It was just a matter of being patient and keeping the ball moving and waiting for that opportunity to come.
“Obviously Mohamed’s (Toure) goal helped us because they went 1-0 up and with that they even closed things a bit more and looked to punish us on the counter-attack.
“Scoring that goal and then coming back in the second-half we made a couple of changes and the boys responded really well and scored the goals that we needed to.”
Adelaide United Reserves
Adelaide United Reserves recorded its first win in four matches after a 4-1 victory over Cumberland United Reserves.
Musa Toure scored a brace while Panagiotis Kikianis and Giuseppe Bovalina were on target.