MATCH REPORT: CAMBRIDGE UNITED 2 MIDDLESBROUGH 1
Cambridge United made it four wins in a row and progressed into the knockout stage of the Checkatrade Trophy following a 2-1 win over Middlesbrough at the Cambs Glass Stadium.
A first half goal from Uche Ikpeazu and an own goal by Boro’s centre back Matty Elsdon saw Shaun Derry’s side overcome their North East opponents under the midweek floodlights.
United stamped their authority on the game early with Uche Ikpeazu making a mark on a young Middlesbrough outfit, as the striker opened the scoring on nine minutes as he barged past the last defender before sliding the ball under keeper Joe Fryer.
The visitors had the chance to equalise midway through the half, with Brazilian striker Jouo Morelli side stepping past Brad Halliday and Josh Coulson to present an opportunity in front of goal, only to drag his shot wide of the mark.
Despite the U’s dominating much of the first half, it was to be Middlesbrough who would score next as young left back Marcus Tavernier marauded into the United 18 yard box on 35 minutes, before picking his spot in the top left of Will Norris’ goal from 15 yards out.
However, the U’s restored the lead 12 minutes after the break when Matty Elsdon headed past his own keeper from 18 yards out after Max Clark had floated the ball into the Middlesbrough area.
Ikpeazu came close to extending the advantage minutes later when Joe Pigott flashed the ball across the six yard box, which bounced off the shin of the large striker and over the bar.
Having made his senior debut in the opening clash of the competition against Shrewsbury Town, 16-year old Leon Davies was given his first run out on home soil by Manager Shaun Derry after the hour mark.
Josh Coulson forced a fine double from Fryer in the Middlesbrough net ten minutes from time following a U’s corner. Nonetheless the U’s saw out the closing stages comfortably to progress into the next stage.
Cambridge United: Norris, Halliday, Legge, Coulson, Long, Mingoia (Newton, 45 mins), Dunne (Davies, 62 mins), Clark, Gosling, Pigott (Williamson, 76 mins), Ikpeazu
Middlesbrough: Fryer, Elsdon, Johnson, McAloon (Kitching, 64 mins), McGoldrick, Mondal, Morelli, Morris, Pattison, Tavernier, Tinkler
Attendance: 693 (27 away)
Vindis Man of the Match: Max Clark