U18s v Colchester United

Posh U18s booked their place in the final of the Professional Development League Cup.

A last-minute winner from substitute János Bodnár secured Peterborough United U18s place in the final of the Under-18 Professional Development League Cup after a 1-0 victory over Colchester United on Tuesday afternoon at the idverde Training Ground.

Posh carved out their first opportunity on two minutes as Dennis Kelmendi intercepted a poor pass and advanced into the box, but his effort was well saved by the keeper. Defender James Dornelly then saw his effort from the edge of the box deflected wide of the post.

Jamal Campbell-Ryce’s men dominated the opening stages of the game and, on 13 minutes, forward Reuben Marshall weaved his way through the visitors’ defence before firing a shot on target, forcing the keeper into a low save. Two minutes later, Marshall’s ball found Torin Ntege free inside the box, but his effort was straight at the keeper.

The visitors started to grow in confidence and had their first chances of the game on 18 minutes as Jamie Arnold’s shot on the half-volley went over the bar before Kenny Mubomba’s effort from distance was straight into the arms of Jake West.

Posh continued to search for the opener ahead of the break as Harley Mills’ corner was met by Kelmendi, who could only send his effort over the bar. Midfielder Harry Titchmarsh was inches away from scoring the goal of the season as his effort from distance just whistled past the top left-hand corner.

The second half saw much of the same from the two sides as both sides created a lot of opportunities, but were struggling to find the breakthrough. Posh came close in the opening minutes of the second half as Ntege’s acrobatic effort struck the ground and was flicked on by the head of Marshall which went wide of the post.

The visitors looked to break the deadlock on 68 minutes as T’aizo Marcel-Dilaver’s ball into the box found Arnold and he sent his effort wide of the post. On 73 minutes, Posh made their third substitution of the afternoon and one that proved to be the game-changer as Bodnár replaced Ntege.

In the dying seconds of the game, a superb ball from Harley Mills found Bodnár on the edge of the area, who cooly controlled the ball before firing a low-driven effort past the Colchester keeper and into the bottom corner to secure Posh U18s spot in the final of the Under-18 Professional Development League Cup.

Posh XI: West, Dornelly, Arthur, Rose, Mills, Challinor, Marcon (Unwin, 58min), Titchmarsh, Kelmendi (Winters, 58min), Marshall, Ntege (Bodnár, 73min).

Subs Not Used: McCann, Changunda.

The under 18s will face Birmingham City after they claimed a 2-1 victory over Bristol City in the other semi-final. Details of the final are yet to be announced.

Written by Charlie Jiggins.