JOHANNESBURG, South Africa – The New England Revolution Under-17 squad earned its first victory of the 2012 Future Champion Guateng tournament against Aspire (Qatar) on Friday, March 30.
Aspire came out flying in the first half, putting the New England defense under pressure early. But despite generating a number of chances, the Qatari team was unable to find the back of the net before the break.
The Revolution looked more dominant in the second half, and scored the go-ahead goal in the 49th minute. After a series of promising runs down the left flank, Christian Sady (North Andover, Mass.) found Danny Apajee (Cranston, R.I.) at the top of the 18-yard box. The attacking midfielder then fired a powerful shot that hit the bottom of the crossbar and bounced into the net.
Aspire aimed to answer in the 52nd minute, but New England goalkeeper David Hepp (Natick, Mass.) came up with a crucial diving save to preserve the lead, which held through to the final whistle.
With the win, the Under-17s – now 1-2-1 – will next compete for fifth or sixth place in the tournament. The Revs will take on familiar foe the Orlando Pirates at 4 a.m. ET on Saturday, March 31 in their final game in South Africa.
2012 Future Champions Gauteng
New England Revolution U17s vs. Aspire U17s
Friday, March 30, 2012 – Soweto, South Africa (Nike Football Training Center)
Revolution 1, Aspire 0
NE – Danny Apajee (Christian Sady) 49
New England Revolution: David Hepp (GK), Erik Martel, Will Szostkiewicz, Matthew Cooper, Christian Sady, Zach Herivaux (Matthew Nyeayea 42), Guy Kabala, Danny Apajee (Declan McCabe 49), Ryan Kingsley, Amadu Kunateh (Casey Schehl 53), Gabe Gissie (Kevin Herrera 58)
Unused substitutes: Matthew Mozynski (GK), Luke Albertini, Greg Forgue
AS – MahmoudJA (caution) 13
NE – Matthew Cooper (caution) 37
AS – Doozandeh (caution) 46
AS – Ibrahim (caution) 50