Boro conclude a positive pre-season with a 4-0 victory against a Tottenham Hotspur XI, thanks to a Nick Freeman double, Carl Piergianni header and own goal…
Stevenage’s pre-season campaign came to an end this afternoon with our final fixture before the new season to kicks off this time next week.
Ashby-Hammond started between the sticks with a back three of Carl Piergianni, Luther James-Wildin and Nathan Thompson with Dan Butler and Kane Smith supporting as the wing backs. Just ahead of the backline was a midfield three of Jake Forster-Caskey, Nick Freeman and Ben Thompson who offered support to the two men up top in Josh March and Jordan Roberts.
It was a good start in the sun for the home side who had two big chances in the opening twenty minutes with the first coming from Jordan Roberts, who saw a shot hit the outside of the post and go wide. A minute later, the luck didn’t get any better as Piergianni’s header from close range rattled the crossbar.
Stevenage then got their reward for a bright opening quarter of the match, when a corner put in by Jake Forster-Caskey was met with a header by Nick Freeman to put the home side ahead.
The young Spurs side tried to grow into the game but the intensity from Stevenage made it difficult for the opposition to find any rhythm in the game.
Stevenage’s high pressure paid off with a brilliant move just before the interval. A solo run from Jordan Roberts made space for him to send the ball out wide to Dan Butler, whose dangerous ball was met by Nick Freeman to double his goal tally and Boro’s advantage.
At half-time, Boro made two changes with Alex MacDonald replacing Nick Freeman and Louis Thompson replacing Ben Thompson.
Two minutes after the restart, it was three with another brilliant delivery from Forster-Caskey which was met yet again by the head of Carl Piergianni.
Four minutes later, Dan Butler’s cross ricocheted off Spurs’ Jahziah Linton who turned it into his own net – making it now four for Stevenage with no reply.
On the hour mark, Krisztian Hegyi replaced Ashby-Hammond in goal, a trialist replaced Butler at the back and Jamie Reid came on for Jordan Roberts up top.
Little action occurred for the next fifteen minutes as Stevenage were comfortable with their lead. With just over twenty minutes to play, David Hicks and Theo Alexandrou replaced Jake Forster-Caskey and Josh March.
Alex MacDonald went close to making it five towards the end of the game, stepping up to a free-kick on the edge of the Spurs box only to see his effort crash against the crossbar. Shortly after, Kymani Skyers replaced Nathan Thompson in defence.
In the final ten minutes the opposition saw a bit more of the ball but Stevenage did well to stand firm and hold them off. Boro’s shape despite the numerous changes made it difficult for the visiting side.
The referee’s full-time whistle rounded off a good pre-season for Steve Evans’ side, not only for results but the fitness and match sharpness ahead of the new season commencing next weekend at Northampton Town.
Attendance: 2,045, including 319 away.
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