After surprisingly winning the U17 Scottish Premier League last season, Accies U19s had their first ever taste of European football on Wednesday in Switzerland when they flew over to play their first leg match against FC Basel U19s. This was the first time Hamilton had ever qualified for any sort of UEFA competition. Their youngsters went unbeaten throughout the SPL season and were awarded a place in the UEFA Youth League Qualifiers. After the draw took place, I couldn’t resist travelling to Switzerland to watch my team play and watch our future stars. So on Tuesday I set off to Manchester to catch my flight to Basel. Around 45 Hamilton fans made the trip out to Switzerland.
FC BASEL XI
Gebhardt, Jankowski, Zunic, Lokaj, Isufi, Bislimi, Suter, Marchand, Tushi, Gubinelli, Vonmoos
Connelly, Douglas, McCann, Hamilton, Stranger, Meikle, Smith, Mimnaugh, Slaven, Reilly, Scullion
The hosts got the game underway at the sunny Leichtathletic Stadion with both sides starting the game well. There was a early goal in this one and it came for the away side after 7 minutes. A corner from the right went straight across the 6 yard box, and there was right back, Adam Douglas who nodded the ball past FC Basel keeper, Felix Gebhardt. However, the Home side near enough replied instantly through winger Julian Vonmoos. The winger was sent clean throw 1v1 and the Swiss made no mistake as he fired it across goal and into the top corner past Connelly. The game settled down after the two quickfire goals but on the 21st minute, Accies were awarded a free kick on the edge of the box. Left-footed, Regan Mimnaugh stepped up before he curled his effort at goal, which crashed off the bar. It was a flat end to the half with no real goal-mouth action. Hamilton had a couple of dangerous set pieces which seemed to be a real issue for the home side but they just about managed to deal with them.
The Second half got underway and the hosts started very well. They went close on the 49th minute when Dejan Zunic fired a low cross goal, but goal scorer, Vonmoos was inches away from connecting. The cross did take a deflection and it resulted in a corner. From the corner the home side took the lead and changed the complexion of the game when Basel midfielder, Yannick Marchand rose highest of all the the front post before glancing the ball to the far post and into the net. The home side looked in control after taking the lead however they nearly shot themselves in the foot when Basel keeper ,Gebhardt passed the ball straight to the half time sub, Kyle Munro but luckily for the home side, Munro took a heavy touch and the keeper managed to recover and save the strikers shot. On the 67th minute, Basel nearly doubled their lead when, Daniele Spartaro burst into the box before firing a powerful shot at goal from point blank range but Connelly came out strong and saved well. 2 minutes later, The away side nearly gifted Basel a goal. Mimnaugh gave the ball away cheaply in his own half. Tician Tushi picked up the loose ball before driving at goal and firing just wide of the target. Out of nowhere. Hamilton equalised with 15 minutes remaining. Lewis Smith beat Yves Jankowski down the left before drilling low across the face of goal. It beat everyone apart from Adam Douglas, whole took a touch and fired it towards goal before it deflected into the net. Ross Connelly made one of the best saves I have seen to help seal a draw for Hamilton on the 88th minute. Julian Vonmoos fired a lethal effort at goal which looked to be going top corner but Connelly somehow got a finger tip on it to direct it for a corner. The hosts were reduced to 10 men on the 90th minute when Jankowski was shown a second yellow after stopping a quick break-away after poorly giving the ball away. There was one final piece of drama in a fantastic second half of football. A last minute corner caught Basel keeper, Gebhardt in no mans land once again. Taylor Wilson got a head on what looked to be the winner but Uran Bislimi just about managed to clear it off the line.
Full time- FC BASEL U19 2-2 HAMILTON U19
Attendance -332 (45 AWAY)
- I will attach the official UEFA team sheet I was given with all details
Yellow Cards- Bislimi(66), Mimnaugh(67), Jankowski(74)
Red Cards- Jankowski (90)
Goals- Douglas(6,75), Vonmoos(13), Marchand(50)