DUNK HEADS LATE TO SEAL WIN FOR U’S
Harrison Dunk heads late to secure the U’s all three points in a 1-0 win over Stevenage at the Abbey Stadium, that extends the U’s unbeaten run to three games.
It seemed the U’s had thrown all but the kitchen sink at the visitors before Dunk scored in the 97th minute of the game to clinch the victory for United.
The U’s made just one change to the team that began the game against Hartlepool United a week earlier, with Liam Hughes returning to the starting line-up. Meanwhile Ryan Donaldson and notably Rory Gaffney appeared on the bench for Richard Money’s side having recovered from their respective injuries.
United were forced to fend off an early chance from the visitors, when Luke Berry’s pass was intercepted and the ball was delivered to the back post by Schumacher, where Charlie Lee’s header crunched the underside of the cross bar. George Taft was then fastest to react for the U’s to clear the ball from danger.
Cambridge then settled into the game and although they were not creating too much in the way of goal scoring opportunities, Richard Money’s men were enjoying a majority in possession.
The first sight at goal fell for Robbie Simpson, who fired a venomous half volley on 20 minutes from the right side of the 18 yard box that forced Stevenage keeper Jesse Joronen into a smart save low to his left.
United continued to dominate the possession stats and Liam Hughes again came close to breaking the deadlock for the U’s, when he headed a Luke Berry corner towards the target before Stevenage scrambled to clear off the line shortly before the half an hour mark.
Hughes tested Joronen nine minutes later, when Robbie Simpson controlled Leon Legge’s long ball up field exquisitely before the 23-year old drove a low shot on target which was caught by the Stevenage keeper.
Tom Hitchcock came close shortly before the half time whistle when the former Leicester City forward flashed a header wide of Chris Dunn’s goal, however it remained goalless at the break and the U’s had certainly enjoyed the better of the first 45 minutes.
For the opening 20 minutes of the second period both sides toyed with possession in a scrappy period of the contest. Luke Berry struck a sweet effort on the hour mark from 20 yards, which glided past Joronen’s right post.
United then produced two chances in as many minutes soon after. First Harrison Dunk was unable to beat Joronen from close range following an impeccable delivery to the back post by Newton, before Robbie Simpson fired over from a good position moments later.
Richard Money’s men continued to press, Conor Newton came close in their next foray of note when Jordan Chiedozie flicked header sent the former Newcastle youngster driving at goal but Mark Hughes produced a goal saving block to keep it scoreless.
The Amber Army rose to feet in applause on 80 minutes, when Rory Gaffney took to the field to replace Conor Newton having suffered a plighted beginning to his Cambridge United career.
That shot life into the U’s who rattled off a number of attempts on goal through Chiedozie, Simpson, Demetriou and Berry.
Cambridge continued to push for a late winner that would clinch all three points and Berry looked to have done just that when Gaffney showed good feet to work space for a cross, which the U’s midfielder glanced within fractions of Stevenage’s far post.
Gaffney stung the palms of Joronen moments before the final whistle with a fierce volley, that the Stevenage keeper palmed away from danger.
The U’s persistence paid off though, as Rory Gaffney crossed to the far post in the 97th minute where Dunk headed home to seal the win for United.
Cambridge United: Dunn, Omozusi (Taylor, 76 mins), Legge, Roberts, Taft (Chiedozie, 53 mins), Demetriou, Berry, L.Hughes, Dunk, Newton (Gaffney 81 mins), Simpson
Stevenage: Joronen, McCombe, Hughes, Whelpdale, Schumacher, Pett (McEvoy, 71 mins), Hitchcock (Akinyemi, 60 mins), Lee, Jebb, Henry, Johnson (Franks, 79 mins)
Attendance: 4,852 (573)
Vindis Man of the Match: Conor Newton