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Report | Boyé strikes on injury return with U23s

Striker fires young Royals to win against Swansea

8 November 2019

Lucas Boyé came back from injury to score for Reading's Under-23s on Friday, as they overcame Swansea City with a 1-0 win in the Premier League Cup.

Reading started with Lucas Boyé up front, who was gaining minutes for the first time after a month-long injury absence, as he works his way back to first team contention.

After a pensive opening 10 minutes that saw Reading dominate the ball, they started to ramp up their offensive and test the Swansea defence.

Imari Samuels found a clever pass through to Ramarni Medford-Smith outside him, who arrowed a ball into the box. Marcel Elva-Fountaine tried to get there, but Swans skippwe Jack Evans got a vital block in.

Shortly afterwards, Boyé spun away from his marker and bore down on goal. He shot from a tight angle, forcing a good save from Lewis Webb as the ball flew across goal.

It took time for the visitors to gain any kind of foothold in the game, first threatening with almost 20 minutes on the clock, as Will Rickard found space to cross from the right flank.

Liam Cullen was unmarked and able to place a header on goal, but he couldn't control his effort and it sailed over Jökull Andrésson's crossbar.

Up the other end, Boyé was brought down 25 yards out in an enticing position for the free-kick. Josh Barrett stood over it, bending around the wall and forcing a low save to his left from Webb - with the ball bottom corner bound.

Andrésson was soon called upon to keep parity, though, when Swansea broke and Ali Al-Mamadi was slipped through on goal with only the goalkeeper to beat, but the Iceland U19 international did brilliantly to get off his line and make a smothering save.

It looked as though the half was petering out in terms of chances, but Reading kept up the pressure, and it paid off three minutes before the break.

Barrett was looking for space on the edge of the box, but he cut back to Boyé, who opened up and slotted into the far corner to put our Under-23s in front. 

Half-time | Reading U23 1-0 Swansea City U23

As was planned, Boyé made way at the break as he continues his recovery, and Ben House was introduced for the Royals as his replacement.

The young Royals, watched on by Mark Bowen and assistant manager, Eddie Niedzwiecki, looked to build on their advantage and dominance from the first period.

A handball saw Barrett in position to try a carbon copy of his near-miss from a set piece in the first half, taking a similar kind of free-kick but Webb watched it all the way and saved well.

Barrett went close again shortly afterwards, when a deft pass from Olise found its way through to the playmaker, whose low finish dragged its way narrowly wide of Webb's right-hand post.

With Ryan East and Tyler Frost also making their way back from long spells on the sidelines, they were replaced on the hour mark - with Thierry Nevers and Dejan Tetek getting a run-out in Woking.

Chances were at a premium throughout the second half, with neither side able to break the other down and an increasing number of fouls going in as the floodlights overtook the natural light around the Laithwaite Community Stadium.

Barrett went close yet again for the Royals, when Tetek pounced on a loose Swansea pass from the defence and played it into the attacker. Barrett spun and shot, with his effort dipping and clipping the bar on its way over in the best effort of the half.

Swansea, in a rare look forward, found Rickard in space to run at Reading's defenders. He worked his way across the area, trying to beat Andrésson by shooting back across goal, but the Reading stopper got a vital touch on the way through.

Up the other end, Reading almost doubled the lead when two subs combined. Nevers found space on the right to exploit, cutting back across goal for House, who dug the ball out from behind to shoot first time towards the roof of the net, but Webb thwarted his effort with a stunning reaction save - tipping over the bar in a fine piece of goalkeeping.

But Reading would have to withstand a flurry of late pressure from the Swans, as they looked to erase the deficit at the end of the game. A succession of late corners were defended by the Royals, but Cullen was the recipient of one clearance, driving back across goal and a matter of inches wide in the visitors' best chance of the game.

The Royals did well to see out the remainder of the game, and earn three important points in their Premier League Cup group.

Full-time | Reading U23 1-0 Swansea City U23

Reading U23: Andrésson, Nditi, Burley, East (c)(Tetek 62), Samuels, Medford-Smith, Elva-Fountaine, Frost (Nevers 62), Boyé (House HT), Olise, Barrett.
Subs: Roberts.
Goals: Boyé (42)
Yellow: House

Swansea City U23: Webb, Bevan, Cooper, J. Evans (c), C. Evans, Butler, Rickard (Walsh 85), De Boer, Cullen, Paulet, Al-Mamadi (Ja. Thomas 65).
Subs: Gould, Kenko, Jo. Thomas.
Yellow: Cullen

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