Stevenage moved to within three wins of Wembley after seeing off Arsenal U21s in the Papa John's Trophy.

Goals from David Amoo, his first for the club, Dan Sweeney and Arthur Read gave Boro a 3-2 win at the Lamex and rendered efforts from Nathan Buter-Oyedeji and Amario Cozier-Duberry consolations only.

And despite the fact Arsenal led at half-time, Stevenage will only be frustrated that the success wasn't more convincing because success in this competition is becoming more and more possible.

There were six changes to the Boro team from the draw at Grimsby Town.

Taye Ashby-Hammond, Luther James-Wildin, Carl Piergianni, Luke Norris and Saxon Earley all moved to the bench while Danny Rose, taken off after a head injury at Blundell Park, not included at all.

Aaron Chapman, Dean Campbell, Kane Smith, Arthur Read, David Amoo and the now free from suspension Jordan Roberts the men coming into the starting line-up.

An early goal would have been in the plans for Steve Evans' side but not one for Arsenal.

And the annoying thing is, it was totally avoidable.

Boro were perhaps wanting a free-kick for a foul on Jake Reeves but they still had possession until Smith and Dan Sweeney got in a muddle.

That allowed Charles Sagoe to get clear down the left and although his shot was slashed across goal, it was kept alive at the back post and Butler-Oyedeji swept it into the empty net.

Stevenage could have scored before the goal but Alex Gilbey was crowded out by a good block from Matt Smith.

And the more the half went on, the more Boro got forward.

It wasn't always emphatic but they did start pinning the young Gunners back, and they started creating chances too.

Gilbey had the best of them after a ball across the face of goal from Amoo but he somehow scooped it over.

Max Clark sent a free-kick from a little more than 20 yards just wide of the post while Roberts return saw the dangerous forward have a number of chances.

One was headed into the side netting, another was blazed over while a third was glanced wide from a good central position, although there may have a touch from Gilbey just before to prevent a clear header.

Stevenage started the second half as they ended the first, on the front foot, and it brought an equaliser after six minutes.

It wasn't particularly pretty, a corner not dealt with by anybody, either forward or attacker, but it ended with Amoo scuffing it in from close range.

From there the contest opened up slightly with Arsenal having more possession than previously although it was still the home side creating the chances.

Roberts should have squared it when Taylor Foran, for once, misjudged a header.

He instead went for power and the near post while Amoo waited at the back.

The second duly arrived though and showed the difference between League Two defences and academy ones as Sweeney came in to meet a corner with expert precision.

However, one thing Arsenal had was trickery and Cozier-Duberry, who had one go in the first half, did wonderfully to turn his man before opening his body and passing it across Chapman and into the far corner.

But parity lasted a little more than 60 seconds. Read moved forward with purpose before arrowing a shot low to the keeper's left and inside the post.


Stevenage: Chapman, Clark (Earley 77), Reeves, Sweeney, Campbell (Norris 77), Roberts, Smith, Vancooten, Read (James-Wildin 83), Gilbey, Amoo (Piergianni 90+4).

Subs (not used): Ashby-Hammond.

Goals: Amoo 51, Sweeney 69, Rose 75

Booked: Reeves 24, Norris 90+5


Arsenal: Graczyk, Awe, Bandeira (Nwaneri 79), Butler-Oyedeji, Foran, Henry-Francis (Lewis-Skelly79), Sagoe Jr (Ideho 67), Smith, Cozier-Duberry, Sousa, Walters (Cirjan 79).

Subs (not used): Hillson, Monlouis, Taylor-Hart.

Goals: Butler-Oyedeji 6, Cozier-Dubbery 74

Booked: Foran 89


HT: Stevenage 0 Arsenal U21 1

Referee: Craig Hicks (Sutton, Surrey)

Attendance: 2,236 (722 from Arsenal)