Ryan Semple Watching On

Posh U21s held to a goalless draw by The Magpies.

Peterborough United U21s were held to a 0-0 draw by Eastern Counties League Premier Division side Dereham Town at Aldiss Park on Tuesday evening in the second game of their pre-season programme.

The Magpies produced the first opportunity of the game as a long-range effort just went over the bar. Lewis Darlington then had two good chances in the space of three minutes as he dragged an effort wide of the far-post after being picked out by Trialist A before his header was tipped over the bar by The Magpies’ goalkeeper following a lovely delivery from János Bodnár.

Bodnár continued to threaten down the left-hand side as his cross was met by Trialist B inside the box, but he guided his past the far-post. A ball over the top from Benjamin Arthur allowed Bodnar to advance through before firing a left-footed effort into the side-netting.

The Magpies’ goalkeeper was forced into his first save of the evening on 32 minutes, but it was relatively comfortable for Tom Coombe as Bodnar’s powerful effort from distance was straight into the hands of the goalkeeper. Trialist B then fired an effort over the bar after a good run into the box, with Posh failing to break the deadlock before the break.

Posh made a wholesale of changes at the break, with the aim of giving all players another 45 minutes to build on from Saturday’s game against Whittlesey Athletic, but it was a half of very few chances from either side. 

The hosts came the closest to breaking the deadlock within the opening two minutes of the second half as a low cross was met by Charlie Clarke, but he couldn’t guide his effort past West. Noah Freeman and Reuben Marshall were both introduced on 60 minutes as they replaced Bodnár and Darlington.

Marshall was inches away from connecting to a low cross from Harley Mills at the front-post before the forward collected the ball on the edge of the box, worked it onto his left-foot and sent a low effort just past the post.

Professional Development Phase coach, Ryan Semple, said: “We need to remember it’s still the only second game of pre-season and the second 45 minutes for most players. So, it was definitely about minutes, but it was also about building the technical and tactical that we have been working on in training.

“I thought the first half was good, but we maybe could have done better with the final shot and worked the goalkeeper on more occasions. However, we dealt with their threats really well and controlled a good amount of the game. The second half was very disjointed, we didn’t play with enough fluidity and gave the ball away cheaply. So, the first 45 minutes was pleasing but the second half was not so much.”

First half XI: West, Bodnár, Arthur, Dreyer, Powell, Lamb, Unwin, Trialist A, Trialist B, Darlington, Trialist C.

Second half XI: West, Bodnár (Freeman, 60 mins), Fox, Thomas, Mills, McGlinchey, Chiha, Marcon, Trialist D, Darlington (Marshall, 60 mins), Ntege.