Match Details: 23/02/2019
Yeovil Town 1-0 Cambridge United
EFL League Two
Yeovil Goals: Courtney Duffus (25)
Yeovil Line-Up: 2. Adel Gafaiti, 5. Bevis Mugabi, 7. Rhys Browne, 8. Matt Worthington, 9. Alex Fisher, 11. Courtney Duffus, 12. Nathan Baxter, 18. Yoann Arquin, 25. Alex Dobre, 26. Daniel Ojo, 30. Alefe Santos
Subs: 1. Stuart Nelson, 3. Carl Dickinson, 10. Jake Gray, 13. Francois Zoko, 16. Tristan Abrahams, 27. Ryan Seager, 28. Devon Arnold,
Substitutes Used: Tristan Abrahams for Yoann Arquin (10 mins), Carl Dickinson for Daniel Ojo (74 mins), Jake Gray for Courtney Duffus (77 mins)
Bookings: Adel Gafaiti (Foul, 55), Alex Fisher (Foul, 58), Nathan Baxter (Ungentlemanly Conduct, 90), Tristan Abrahams (Foul, 90)
Yeovil Town picked up their first League Two points in seven matches as they won their vital six-pointer against Cambridge United by a 1-0 scoreline. The match winner came midway through the first half as former Oldham Athletic striker Courtney Duffus followed up the loose ball from an Alex Dobre shot in what was his first start for the club. Cambridge were well in the game throughout, but lacked firepower, with Alex Jones missing a sitter midway through the second half, whilst Greg Taylor hit the woodwork. But a makeshift Yeovil defence featuring Rhys Browne and Daniel Ojo produced the blocks that were needed to lift Yeovil to 21st place, and three points off the relegation slots.
The Glovers went into the match making five changes to the team that were well beaten at Forest Green last weeked. Craig Alcock (knee) and Alex Pattison (back) dropped out of the squad through injury, whilst Jake Gray, Francois Zoko and Carl Dickinson were dropped to the bench. That made for a very makeshift looking line-up particularly in defence where Yoann Arquin was a shock centre-back selection
The decision to select Yoann Arquin as a centre-back was an unusual one, and early on Yeovil looked nervous and disjointed. Arquin collided with teammate Matt Worthington and appeared to be crocked, meaning that when he collided with Jabo Ibehre a minute or two later, he went down and couldn't continue. That meant that the original tactical plans had to be completely abandoned with Bevis Mugabi moving to centre-back, Rhys Browne becoming a right-back and substitute Tristan Abrahams coming on to play as a right-winger.
In terms of the football itself, Cambridge had managed to flight a George Maris free kick over the bar, whilst Jabo Ibehre forced Nathan Baxter into his first save of the day as he parried a shot, with the defence eventually getting in enough blocks to hack the loose ball away. George Taft when close when he headed wide from a George Maris corner, whilst the visitors also hit the top of the crossbar, as Greg Taylor's looping cross bounced of the top of the frame and out.
At 25 minutes, Yeovil Town hadn't had an effort on goal. However, their first chance turned into the opening goal, as AFC Bournemouth loanee Alex Dobre's solo run took him past two defenders before he fired off a shot. Visiting keeper Dimitar Mitov could only parry the shot, and the first player to react was Courtney Duffus, who stabbed the rebound home from close range for a 1-0 lead.
The one goal advantage almost became two, when Alex Fisher fired wide of the post. A move up the right flank from Rhys Browne after Tristan Abrahams set him up on the overlap saw him feed Fisher, but the striker couldn't get his attempt on target. Cambridge looked a little stunned by the goal, and apart from an awful Jabo Ibehre shot that went high and wide, the only effort they managed in the lead up to half time was when David Amoo burst past the otherwise excellent Daniel Ojo, and hit his shot just wide during first half injury time.
The second period opened up with Cambridge again unable to deal with Alex Dobre's running with the ball, as he fired off a shot that forced Mitov down to his left to stop the ball. But at the other end, it took a strong block tackle by Rhys Brown to prevent Jabo Ibehre from equalising as the former Carlisle striker's attempt at the back post came off Brown's leg and onto the outer goal frame for a corner. There was then a huge let-off after a David Amoo cross found Alex Jones unmarked at the back post and just six yards out. The Cambridge striker managed to convert his shot wide of the post to stop his side from equalising.
Yeovil's best second half chances came on the counter-attack. Just before he was substituted, goalscorer Courtney Duffus produced an angled shot that Mitov had to palm over his crossbar for a corner. His withdrawal saw Jake Gray come on, with the Glovers switching to a 4-5-1 for the final 15 minutes as they packed men behind the ball. Cambridge couldn't find a way through the numbers that blocked out the possession and territory, reducing Cambridge to playing the ball around the edge of Nathan Baxter's goal area, but without being able to directly worry the keeper. They were able to ride out six minutes of injury time in a performance that - Dobre aside - was largely about grit and deterination, rather than attacking flair. The three points gained were enough to lift them above Port Vale and to give them a three point buffer on Macclesfield Town, with the Glovers now in 21st place.
Link: 2018-19 Latest League Two Table.
Final Score: Yeovil Town 1 Cambridge United 0.
Scorers: Courtney Duffus (1-0, 25 mins)
12. Nathan Baxter (Capt)
5. Bevis Mugabi 18. Yoann Arquin 2. Adel Gafaiti 26. Daniel Ojo
7. Rhys Browne 8. Matt Worthington 30. Alefe Santos 25. Alex Dobre
9. Alex Fisher 11. Courtney Duffus
1. Stuart Nelson (GK) 3. Carl Dickinson (74 mins for Daniel Ojo) 10. Jake Gray (77 mins for Courtney Duffus) 13. Francois Zoko 16. Tristan Abrahams (10 mins for Yoann Arquin) 27. Ryan Seager 28. Devon Arnold
13 Dimitar Mitov
25 Louis John 4 George Taft 16 Harry Darling 5 Greg Taylor
7 David Amoo 6 Gary Deegan 18 George Maris 19 Reggie Lambe
14 Jabo Ibehre 26 Alex Jones
9 Rushian Hepburn-Murphy (63 mins for Alex Jones) 15 Emmanuel Osadebe 17 Leon Davies 20 Jeavani Brown (64 mins for Louis John) 22 Paul Lewis 30 Finley Iron
Yeovil Bookings: Adel Gafaiti (foul, 55 mins), Alex Fisher (foul, 58 mins), Tristan Abrahams (foul, 90 mins), Nathan Baxter (timewasting, 90 mins)
Cambridge United Bookings: None.
Yeovil Match Statistics: Possession: 46%; Shots: 8; Shots On Target: 3; Corners: 3; Fouls: 17.
Cambridge United Match Statistics: Possession: 54%; Shots: 7; Shots On Target: 1; Corners: 6; Fouls: 5.
Referee: Graham Salisbury (Lancashire). Assistants: Andrew Hendley (West Midlands) and Steven Plane (Worcestershire). Fourth Official: Sam Allison (Wiltshire).
Attendance: 2,596 (with 222 Cambridge United supporters).