Arsenal XI


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Match Report


Woodside Park
Friday, July 27, 2007. 7.30pm

Bishops Stortford


Pearson 82

Arsenal XI


Wilshere 86

A Jack Wilshere goal four minutes from time salvaged a deserved draw for  Neil Banfield's Arsenal XI against Bishops Stortford on Friday.

The reserve-team coach took a youthful squad to face the Conference South side managed by former Gunner Martin Hayes.

In an even encounter, Arsenal had marginally the best of the opening period, with Spaniard Fran Merida particularly impressive.

On 21 minutes the midfielder's floated free-kick from the right was well claimed by home keeper Andrew Young. Merida then made space for himself with a deft flick but his shot was touched away by Young.

The Spaniard had a fine chance to open the scoring on 68 minute when Rui Fonte's clever pass found him in space, but with just the keeper to beat, he floated his shot wide of the left post.

With nine minutes to go, James Dunne was unfortunate to hit the post and within 60 seconds Arsenal were behind. Greg Pearson beat Wojciech Szczesny to a cross from the right and poked beyond the reach of the Polish keeper.

Stortford's lead lasted just four minutes though as Wilshere latched on to Luke Ayling's pass to give Banfield's side a share of the spoils.

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30 Jul 2007