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Free-kicks do the trick!

Posted on 9 April 2009  - 12:00

Gilberto and Ryan Mason delivered inch-perfect free-kicks as our reserves secured a deserved 3-0 win over Arsenal on Thursday night.

Free-kicks do the trick!

Gilberto and Ryan Mason delivered inch-perfect free-kicks as our reserves secured a deserved 3-0 win over Arsenal on Thursday night.

Both strikes came from almost the same position - just outside the penalty area, right of centre - after 11 and 68 minutes respectively at Barnet's Underhill Stadium.

Jake Livermore capped an impressive performance with the third goal in the 77th minute to keep alive hopes of catching leaders Aston Villa in the Barclays Premier Reserve League South.

There were a few changes to the side that beat Villa last time out, most notably Alan Hutton returning at right-back and Kyle Fraser-Allen back from his loan spell at Macclesfield and starting up front.

Gilberto's free-kick opener represented the first real effort at either end and came after Takura Mtandari was chopped down on the edge of the box. Gilberto made it look so easy, a measured swing of the left foot and the ball nestled into the far corner.

Mason forced a fine save out of Gunners keeper James Shea as we continued to press in the first half before the home side finally came to life in the final minutes, Amaury Bischoff chipped just over and Ben Alnwick raced off his line to deny Sanchez Watt.

The sides swapped headed chances at the start of the second half as Alnwick tipped over from Watt and Hutton powered Mason's corner just over. Watt tested Alnwick again from the edge of the box but Arsenal's chances were kept to a minumum thanks to the sheer hard work of the lads in all areas of the pitch.

The next goal was key and it arrived in the 68th minute. Mason was initially tripped on the edge of the box and lined-up the free-kick with Gilberto. Most would have expected the Brazilian to step up but Mason took over and in some style, curling low around the defensive wall and in off the post.

The lads continued to hustle when Arsenal were in possession and it paid handsome dividends with 77 minutes on the clock. Centre-back Luke Ayling dwelled too long on the ball, Livermore won it off him, advanced into the box and slotted past Shea.

Hutton met Mason corners twice more, guiding headers just wide, before the Academy's top scorer tried his luck again from a free-kick from exactly the same place as the first two. This time, Mason curled over the wall for the far corner and Shea needed to grasp the ball at full stretch to prevent a hat-trick of free-kicks to remember.

Arsenal: Shea, Eastmond, Cruise, Merida, Bartley, Ayling, Randall, Frimpong, Watt (Sunu, 66), Bischoff (Evina, 66), Emmanuel-Thomas. Subs: Coquelin, Dunne.

Spurs: Alnwick, Hutton, Hughton, Livermore, Rocha, Gilberto, Mtandari, Parrett (Byrne, 60), Fraser-Allen, Mason, Maghoma. Subs: Button, Asajile, Nicholson.