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AZ ALKMAAR U17 1 BRENTFORD U17 4

29 October 2013

Bees beat Eredivsie side comfortably in Dutch friendly

Bradley Clayton and Courtney Senior scored a brace each as The Bees were handsome winners against Eredivisie side AZ Alkmaar in their friendly in Holland.
Clayton struck twice in a first-half which The Bees dominated and the visitors had chances to go into the break even further ahead. 
Senior made it three ten minutes after the break and, although Robin Schouten pulled one back with 20 minutes to go, the result was never in doubt as Senior smashed home a fine fourth with 10 minutes to go to complete the victory.
Due to the heavy rain which had battered Northern Europe over the weekend the game was played on an artificial surface at AZ's training complex just outside Alkmaar.
From the off both sides looked to get the ball down and play and the opening exchanges were very pleasing on the eye if not full of goalmouth action.
However The Bees struck after 11 minutes as Seika Jatta pressed the home defense into an error and Reece Cole, one of four Under-16s in the squad, picked the ball up and rolled in Clayton who finished coolly under Maarten List from 12 yards. 
The Bees went close to adding a second moments later as Senior and Romayn Pennant exchanged passes on the left before teeing up Jatta who shot across the face of goal and narrowly wide from 15 yards. 
Anthony Hayes' side were now in total control of the game and Cole fired over from 25 yards before The Bees came close to adding a wonderful second. 
A fine flowing move from back-to-front saw Cole burst free from the midfield but on the stretch Clayton could only fire over from 15 yards with just the keeper to beat.
Nik Tzanev in The Bees goal had been a spectator for the first 20 minutes but he was finally called into action by Calvin Stengs long-range effort which he comfortably held.
The visitors did get their deserved second after 22 minutes from another excellently worked move. 
Captain James Ferry's quick free-kick freed Senior. He played in Jatta who got to the byline and pulled the ball back for Clayton to prod home from close range.
Senior was getting more and more joy down the left and his run set Jatta in behind the defence but Joerie Church got back to block his effort away for a corner.
With the game being played on the carpet like astroturf both sides were looking to get the ball down and play but The Bees were proving more than a match for their hosts in possession.
The home side were content to sit back and invite The Bees to have possession in their own-half and with Ferry and Cole offering options short from midfield Hayes's side spent long spells of the half in possession pulling the Dutch side over the pitch.
With the half nearing an end Senior has a great chance to grab a third but List was out sharply to turn away his effort.
AZ started the second-half brightly and could have reduced the arrears early on but Tzanev turned away Schouten's effort from a tight angle.
That save proved important as The Bees added a third moments later in slightly fortunate circumstances.  
Gradi Milenge found Jatta and he held the ball up well for Senior on the left hand side. His attempted cross was caught on the strong wind and flew over List and into the back of the net off the post. 
The third goal seemed to spark a reaction in the home side and they enjoyed their best period of the game. 
Milenge had to be alert to block behind Stengs effort and then Pennant threw himself in the way of Mees Kaandorp's shot from the resulting corner. 
Teun Biljeveld fired a shot well over the bar from distance and Ferdy Druyf turned a dangerous cross wide at the near post before the home side were given a lifeline in the game. 
There appeared to be little danger when Schouten shot from 25 yards but it squirmed through the hands of Tzanev and crossed the line to set up a potentially nervy last 20 minutes. 
However The Bees didn't let the goal affect them as they continued to work the ball around in defence and test the AZ backline. 
Senior signaled a warning shot when he fired over from 25 yards after good work by Daniel Webster but the home side failed to heed the warning and were punished four minutes later. 
Substitute Michael Onovwigun fed a great ball in to Senior and he fired an unstoppable effort from 25 yards that flew past List and into the top corner. 
That goal killed off the game as a contest and The Bees played out the remaining minutes dominating possession and probing for a fifth.
The fifth nearly arrived with the last kick of the game after Webster beat three men but List got down sharply to save as Webster looked to fire across him.
The referee brought the game to a close shortly after leaving The Bees as comfortable 4-1 winners against one of Holland's top academy sides.

AZ Alkmaar: Maarten List; Joerie Church, Melle Springer, Julian Nak, Stan de Boer; Robin Schouten, Jurich Carolina, Cani Yilmaz, Calvin Stengs; Jeredy Hilterman, Teun Koopmeiners
Subs used: Teun Bijleveld, Samuel Brobbey, Ferdy Druyf, Groot Kick, Mees Kaandorp
Brentford: Nik Tzanev; Daniel Webster, Gradi Milenge, Seth Owens, Romayn Pennant; Tom Field, Reece Cole, James Ferry, Courtney Senior; Seika Jatta, Bradley Clayton
Subs used: Michael Onowigun,

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