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Young Blues Beat Bournemouth

Bridgman bags a brace in Merit League success

21 March 2022

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Alfie Bridgman

Pompey Academy returned to winning ways in the Merit League with an impressive 2-1 victory at Bournemouth.

But they had to battle from behind to secure all three points against a side that secured the Youth Alliance League title just a few weeks earlier.

Daniel Adu-Adjei fired a penalty over the bar, although the Cherries did take the lead soon after through Dacosta Gonzalez.

The visitors fought back to level on the stroke of half-time, however, as Alfie Bridgman (pictured) broke away to score.

And it was Bridgman who completed the turnaround towards the end of the contest with a low finish after cutting inside.

Professional development phase coach Liam Daish said: “It was a very pleasing display from us and Bournemouth are always a good yardstick to measure yourself against.

“We had a strong wind against us in the first half and had to dig in. We fell behind, but reacted well to that and a nice goal from Alfie got us level at the break.

“It was pretty much all us from that point – we gained momentum and confidence to put our opponents on the back foot.

"It was a very pleasing display from us and Bournemouth are always a good yardstick to measure yourself against."

Liam Daish

“There were numerous chances created and Alfie struck again with just a few minutes remaining to secure the win.

“It was an all-round positive performance from us, with the under-16s and a few trialists all doing well.

“We only had three second year scholars involved, with Alfie, Harry Jewitt-White and Izzy Kaba all showing good leadership qualities.

“Harry came back and got a full 90 minutes under his belt before heading off on international duty with Wales.

“It’s what he needed because he hasn’t had enough game time of late, albeit for the positive reason of being on the bench for the first team.

“I’ve been really pleased with Alfie over the past couple of months and he’s probably been our most effective player in that time, while he’s working incredibly hard off the ball.

“He’s matured as a player and as a person, with his performances reflecting that. We’ve moved him further up the pitch of late after using him at left-back to improve his defensive qualities.”

Pompey: Trialist; Trialist, Fox, Kaba, Laidlaw; Jewitt-White, Bosaka, Aston (Hurst 84); Kamavuako (Trialist 82), Trialist, Bridgman

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