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Game-changer Morgan leads the way to cup progress

Report, reaction, and highlights from our Under-18s

27 September 2021

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Under-18s manager James Oliver-Pearce praised the impact of Welsh youth international Morgan Williams after the young Dons came from behind to defeat Oxford United.

Aiming to make progress in the Youth Alliance Cup – a national EFL competition that our Under-18s won last year – Wimbledon trailed in the first-half, but substitute Williams struck an equaliser and a late goal by Under-16s player Archie Stevens earned a 2-1 win.

The home victory at New Malden was a reward for sticking to the task, according to James Oliver-Pearce, who felt that a change of shape swung the match in Wimbledon’s favour.

“We showed excellent resilience to get back into the game," said James. "The boys displayed a lot of character as Oxford are a good side. In the first-half I thought we were very good in possession, but we maybe lacked a bit of threat in behind. We made a tactical change by bringing on a couple of lads, including Morgan, and I thought that the momentum swung our way.

“I just felt that in the middle of the pitch there was a gap for us to work on. We know that Morgan is really good at finding space in those areas of the pitch, so we tried to find little gaps.

"Ultimately, it looks like on this occasion I was proven to be right. Morgan is the one who has to go out and find those spaces, and he did that brilliantly well. To take the ball around the goalkeeper when everything was happening so frantically was absolutely outstanding. I thought the game management from the lads after that was excellent. Oxford are a really good side, unbeaten until today, and the game was really even, but we edged it in the end.”

Click on the link below to listen to an interview with James and Morgan, plus watch the highlights from the game.

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