U18 Preview: Saints vs Aston Villa


Southampton’s Under-18s host Aston Villa on Saturday in the Under-18 Premier League.

Saints vs Aston Villa

Under-18 Premier League

Staplewood Campus

Saturday 6 November, 1pm GMT

Saints’ youngsters host Villa after claiming a 3-2 victory over Brighton at Staplewood last Saturday.

Luke Pearce opened the scoring for Saints before Rylee Wright doubled their lead. Shortly before half-time, Pearce secured a brace and Saints’ third of the match.

The visitors have lost their previous two meetings in the league, a 3-1 defeat at home to Spurs and a 5-0 defeat to West Ham on the road.

Saints have won five of their eight fixtures in the league so far this season, with Brighton having won four.

Villa claimed victory over Saints when they visited Staplewood back in March, with Taylor Jay-Hart and Travis Patterson netting in their 2-0 win.

It was an intense battle when Saints travelled to Aston Villa Training Ground in November 2020.

Kazeem Olaigbe struck Saints in front after just 13 minutes before Brad Young equalised for Villa shortly before the break.

Goals from Ramello Mitchell and Sam Bellis saw Saints regain their lead before two late goals from Hayden Lindley and Arjan Raikhy meant the points were shared.

“Last week, the performance from the boys was outstanding in the first half," said Under-18 Individual Coach Mikey Harris. "They’ve been working really hard on the principles of play and the style of play and it came together in some really important moments in the first half of the game.

“Second half, it’s fair to say they dropped off the levels they’d set in the first half and it’s always an interesting one when the momentum shifts to the opposition. We had a pretty difficult second half really.

“That was a really good learning experience for the players for the whole 90 minutes and something we’ve reflected back on this week and hopefully they’ll take a lot from it."

“In terms of this weekend, obviously it’s another really, really tough game and one we’re looking forward to.

“We’ve had a really good week in the past week obviously playing Saturday, Tuesday, Saturday and the performances and the results have been positive so the boys will be looking to carry that on and it’s a really good challenge for them.”