Oxford impress against a young Boro side..
Stevenage suffered a 6-2 home defeat in their first game of the Checkatrade Trophy. A goal from Harry Beautyman put us in the lead, before Alex Samuel netted when it was too little too late.
Darren Sarll named a much changed starting XI to the team that won on Saturday. International call ups for Ben Kennedy and Dale Gorman meant they were unavailable for selection, whilst Terence Vancooten and Kevin Toner made their first starts for the club.
Jack King was made captain on his return to the starting lineup, while Tom Conlon and Chris Day both started for the first time this season as well.
The first real chance of the game came in the 15th minute, and it was a golden one. Brilliant play by Alex Samuel down the right wing saw him beat his man, before drilling a ball across the six yard box. Harry Beautyman was on the end of it but saw his effort sail just wide.
A good start to the game, similar to at Barnet, and Stevenage’s efforts paid off. A Tom Pett corner caused trouble for Simon Eastwood in goal, punching only as far as a well-placed Harry Beautyman. The ball fell to the midfielder on the penalty spot, and rifled home into the top corner.
The visitors then brought themselves level on the half hour. The well experienced James Henry was allowed to cut inside onto his right foot, before firing into the bottom left corner from just outside box.
The U’s were then in front just before halftime. Jack Payne hassled the ball away from Kevin Toner, before playing the ball through to Rob Hall. Oxford’s number seven then raced down the right, slotting the ball past Chris Day.
Just after halftime, the visitors then doubled their advantage. Ex-Spurs youngster Jonathan Obika was given the space to turn on the edge of the area, before curling a finessed shot into the bottom left corner.
Almost instantly, Oxford were then 4-1 up. Rob Hall found the top corner from 25 yards out with his left foot. All of a sudden, Stevenage had a mountain to climb.
Oxford weren't stopping there. Joe Rothwell wriggled past a couple of defenders in the box before smashing it in at the near post. Three goals in five minutes for the away team.
Jack Payne made it 6-1 with half an hour to go.
With 10 minutes to go, Alex Samuel scored a consolation goal for the home side. Pouncing on a defender’s mistake, the Welshman made it 6-2 with a rifling effort, beating the goalkeeper at the near post.
A disappointing result against a strong side meant Stevenage would now have to pick up points at MK Dons and at home to Brighton for any chance of progressing.
Starting XI: Day, Vancooten, King (Wilkinson 45), Toner, Martin, Samuel, Pett, Smith (Ferry 45), Conlon, Beautyman, Godden (Gray 64).