Football League Youth Alliance, South East Conference
Cambridge United U18 4 Stevenage U18 2 (att 54)
In last week's blog post about a visit to Chesterfield's youth team game I mentioned the inadequacies of the Youth Alliance handbook, for which the Football League charges quite a high price if you're unable find the downloadable online version.
This week I put my trust in it and headed to Cambridge United's listed venue, the Clare College Sports Ground, only to find a cricket match in progress. I had emailed the club's "academy secretary" during the week to ask about the venue, only to receive a long-winded reply that suggested I ought to believe what was in the handbook!
Anyway, with less than 10 minutes to kick off a phone call to Cambridge United went through to the club shop, where a very helpful member of staff directed me the short distance to the Pembroke College Sports Ground. Apparently games are played here until the cricketers have vacated Clare for the summer.
I found a space in the small car park at 11am, with the game starting slightly late about three minutes after. After a less than smooth arrival it was at least a decent game. Cambridge led 3-1 by half time, a score that was harsh on Stevenage and due in no small part to a erratic display by their keeper.
He was subbed at half time, and the visitors pulled a goal back and looked likely to equalise, but eventually Cambridge scored the game's final goal for a 4-2 win.
The Pembroke College Sports Ground is one of many similar facilities in Grantchester Road,with the entrance opposite Cambridge Rugby Club. The pitch is a on the far side of the ground from a pavilion, with a coned off area along the near side for spectators. A visit to Clare College beckons for later this season.