Olivier Kemen scores against Chelsea


By Dan King - Newcastle United Digital Editor
At St. James' Park

Newcastle United Under-18s 2 (Kemen, Armstrong)
Chelsea Under-18s 3 (Solanke, Kiwomya, Boga)

A moment of brilliance from Jeremie Boga settled a thrilling FA Youth Cup quarter-final at St. James' Park and broke the hearts of Newcastle United's youngsters.

In front of a crowd of 2,506 - including Alan Pardew and several first-team players - the Magpies fell behind then roared back to take the lead through Adam Armstrong, who continued his record of scoring in every round.

But it ended up being a Blue day for Dave Watson's boys as Frenchman Boga struck from distance to send Adi Viveash's side through to a two-legged semi-final against Arsenal.

The likes of Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Shola Ameobi, Ryan Taylor, Luuk de Jong, Tim Krul, Ryan Taylor, Rob Elliot and Mike Williamson lent their support, while former Academy players Adam Campbell and Conor Newton - both on loan at St. Mirren - made the trip from Scotland.

And after a quiet opening ten minutes, Liam Smith drove just wide after good work from captain Alex Gilliead.

In the 18th minute, Freddie Woodman had to make a crucial stop with his legs to keep out Isaiah Brown but there was nothing the United keeper could do in the 23rd minute, however, as Greg Olley's midfield block fell kindly for Brown, who raced forward and played in Dominic Solanke to put the Blues in front.

The Chelsea striker almost made it 2-0 as Charlie Colkett's corner dropped for him to crash a half-volley against the woodwork before Gilliead cleared, with Brown's follow-up scrambled clear, then Colkett zipped a shot wide.

But, after superb skill from Rolando Aarons won Newcastle a free kick in a dangerous position, Olley floated over a perfect delivery for Olivier Kemen to glance beyond Mitchell Beeney in the 28th minute. There was a suggestion of handball but referee James Adcock spotted no infringement.

The whole United team ran to the bench to celebrate and their spirit showed once more moments later as Aarons and Liam Gibson worked hard to win the ball and tee up Olley for a low shot which Beeney got down to hold.

Pressing high up the pitch, Newcastle then took the lead in the 38th minute as Armstrong pounced upon a defensive error, took his time and smashed in his fifth goal of the competition.

A powerful strike from Jamie Sterry was then tipped over the bar by the backpedalling Beeney and Kemen shot wide from 20 yards as Watson's side ended the first half strongly.

But Chelsea levelled early in the second half as Alex Kiwomya burst through and squeezed the ball beyond Woodman then, from nothing, Boga drilled a low shot past the United keeper from outside the box.

Kiwomya almost got his second as Brown picked out his run, but the wide man's shot flashed across goal in the 71st minute, then he set up Colkett who screwed horribly off target.

In the 79th minute, Solanke headed over from a corner but Newcastle were still very much in the game.

And they almost equalised when Kemen slid the ball to substitute Jonathyn Quinn, whose powerful strike was pushed around the post by Beeney. From Olley's corner, Kemen headed straight at the keeper and the hosts were unable to fashion another clear-cut chance.

Boga blazed over in stoppage time for Chelsea but he'd already done enough.

Newcastle United Under-18s: Freddie Woodman, Jamie Sterry, Ryan McKinnon, Lubo Satka, Liam Gibson (Ben Drennan 59), Alex Gilliead (c), Olivier Kemen, Greg Olley (Tom Heardman 87), Rolando Aarons, Liam Smith (Jonathyn Quinn 71), Adam Armstrong

Subs not used: Brendan Pearson, Callum Roberts

Chelsea Under-18s: Mitchell Beeney, Isak Ssewankambo, Dion Conroy, Andreas Christensen, Ola Aina, Charlie Colkett (Jordan Houghton 84), Alex Kiwomya, Ruben Loftus-Cheek (c), Dominic Solanke, Jeremie Boga, Isaiah Brown (Reece Mitchell 75)

Subs not used: Bradley Collins, Jay Dasilva, Charly Musonda