Gibraltar U21 played confidence boosting friendly against Sevilla U19
Gibraltar U21 0-1 Sevilla U19
Victoria Stadium, August 6th, 2021
The Gibraltar U21 were involved in a friendly practice football match at the Victoria stadium against Sevilla CF U19. The match which only saw some fifty people attend, mainly family and friends of the Gibraltar players, had been kept away from any public announcement as Gibraltar FA officials provided a platform for the young squad to prepare for their international matches next month without additional pressures on them. The match treated as a practice match in which both sides were able to use numerous substitutions.
Although missing some of the players now playing abroad, David Ochello, Gibraltar U21’s head coach, had available a large pick from players who are most likely to be among the squad members who will travel to Switzerland for their September 3rd UEFA Under 21 Championship qualifying group stage match.
Gibraltar was to concede very early on with Sevilla U19 starting the match with greater focus and confidence. A goal in the first two minutes after a long through ball saw the keeper beaten as he came out to block soon provided for the Gibraltar U21 to tighten across the field.
The visitors initially dominated possession. It was not until halfway through the first half that Gibraltar’s Under 21 started to gain confidence as a unit and closed down the visitors before trying to create their own chances.
Although Sevilla U19 looked as having the greater confidence in possession throughout the match, Gibraltar held up well in defence after that first two minute lack of concentration and produced their own opportunities to surge forward.
There were few opportunities on goal at either end of the pitch with play mainly centred around the central half of the pitch as both teams locked horns.
Although unable to level the score the result provided some positives as Ochello’s young guns gained additional match ministers under their belt. With many players having had limited appearances in competitive matches due to a limited number of under 23 domestic league matches last season and many of those playing in senior sides having been benchwarmers for some of the national league clubs, the match against Sevilla Under 21 was an opportunity to get more minutes on the field. The match saw Gibraltar’s under 21 gaining confidence on the ball as the match progressed on occasions putting the visitors under pressure, although unable to find the target.
Sevilla’s U19 are preparing for the start of their own domestic season with players bidding for a chance to rise through the La Liga side’s ranks and a chance to play for the senior team.