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“A massive credit to the academy”

Reaction from both of last night’s matches

21 July 2021

Rob Tuvey praised the impact of our young talents last night after a trio of Under-16s helped our first-team to victory at Met Police.

Zach Robinson (pictured in action last night) struck a late winner after Under-18s full-back Remi Onabanjo had been fouled in the box, and it was a proud night for our academy.

“All credit has to go to the youngsters that came on at the end," said Rob. "Three Under-16s - Ollie Downs, Kai Jennings, and Nana Kuffour – came on and they did really well. Ollie came on for the last half an hour and played in two positions, and he did very well. We also ended the match with a mixture of first and second year Under-18s and first year pros. We had centre halves Reuben (Mason) and Jola (Lahan), two players in their first year as Under-18s. They all looked really composed, and the first-team lads giving them a clap off at the end is what they deserved.

“I am really happy with them as I think they came on and they were composed, they dominated possession, and they carried a threat. They played with no fear, which is what we asked them to do.

“It’s all about the youngsters that came on, what a special night for them to play for the first-team in front of fans, and to play without fear. It’s all about them, and that’s a massive credit to the academy.”

To hear the rest of Rob Tuvey’s interview click on the link below.

The Dons were also in action last night at King George’s Field, where hosts Kingstonian earned a 2-0 victory, thanks to goals by Simon Cooper and Elliott Buchanan.

Robbo felt that his side didn’t stamp their authority on the game against a team four divisions below us in the pyramid.

Our Head Coach was understandably disappointed when we spoke to him after the game. “It was not the performance we wanted at all. We had two games on the same night and the squads were mixed, so we brought on Under-16s and Under-17s. It was more about the performance from the lads playing 60 minutes. We started really poorly, and then it’s tough because you can’t switch it on.

“It was completely different to Saturday when there was no pressure on us. The pressure was on Brentford to stamp their authority on the game and we were very good, but tonight we needed to have the mentality that we would stamp our authority on the game, but we didn’t do it. We had loose touches and it was a really poor start, we just never got going. It’s better it happens now than later on.

“We over-complicated things, players were having too many touches, using that extra twist and turn when they didn’t need it. We just needed to get the ball moving and stamp our authority on the game, and when you don’t get going they are going to get more and more confident. They scored a goal from a set-piece, which we didn’t defend well enough, and they got more confident. In the end it could have been more, but that’s different when the young lads come on. In the first 60 minutes we were way off it, but we will be okay.”

Pic credit: Andy Nunn.

You can listen to Robbo’s full interview by clicking on the link below.

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