The Under 18s travelled to Wingate & Finchley expecting a tough game due to having an injury depleted squad and only 13 players available, including a call up for dual signed Jack Latter making his EJA league debut.
Playing on a good but sloping pitch at the Football Pad in Barnet, the Saints started the first half kicking uphill. The Saints kept the ball well and created a number of early chances. After 10 minutes, the Saints took a deserved lead with a move that started from the back and eventually found Lawrence free on the right, who beat the defender and found Lankshear who finished the move with a shot that found the bottom corner of the net.
The Saints continued to control the game and went 2-0 up from another good move down the right. Orde found Latter in the box who squared to Lawrence who made no mistake from 8 yards out. With seconds of the first half remaining, Lawrence found Orde who was fouled 30 yards out. Orde stepped up and hit a fantastic free kick over the wall into the top corner.
Half time: 0-3
The half time team talk was easy – more of the same, keep possession and take advantage of attacking down the slope.
The team did just that and quickly went four up with Lankshear picking the ball up on the left before driving into the box before finding Lawrence who coolly finished for his second of the game.
The fifth goal came from an Orde corner from the right. His floated delivery into the 6 yard box found Banerjee who slotted home from close range. With Wingates resolve depleted and the Saints looking dangerous with every attack, Owen (on his return from injury) was put through down the left and he pulled the ball back to Lankshear, who had made a superb run, and he collected the ball, shifted onto his right foot and finished with a shot into the bottom corner.
Goal number 7 came from another Orde corner with a Banerjee header finding the net, for his second goal of the game.
Lankshear got the eighth and a well deserved hat trick following an assist from Latter and, with seconds left, Wilkins went on a dangerous run from right back, riding two heavy tackles (with the ref playing the advantage), before pulling the ball back for Hossen on the edge of the box, who beat two defenders before finishing with a low shot into the bottom corner.
Full time: Wingate & Finchley 0-9 St Albans City
Man of the Match: Alex Lankshear