Drury 50, Hiwula pen 87
Stoke City 0
- Match reports
- Sat 29 Oct 2011, 2:07PM
- Posted by Emily Brobyn
City's Under 18s produced a confident and comprehensive 2-0 victory over Stoke in their top-of-the-league clash at Platt Lane.
The boys Blue proved that anything the first team can do they almost certainly keep up with as goals from Adam Drury and a late penalty from Jordi Hiwula sent Adam Sadler's side four points clear in the Barclays Premier Academy League.
City enjoyed the majority of possession from the start and remained unfazed by the physical threat Stoke posed. Both Alex Henshall and Albert Rusnak tested the Potters' defence with fierce shots in the opening stages.
The Blues passed the ball with confidence and endeavour, leaving Stoke chasing shadows and unable to gain a foothold in the match. Although City were impressive in the manner they constantly dictated play, created chances and pushed forward, at times the final ball proved somewhat lacking.
Despite a flurry of chances from the edge of the box, it took 40 minutes until Stoke goal-keeper Daniel Bachmann was really tested
...City 2 Stoke 0
Rusnak held the ball up in the box to be met by the onrushing Luke Coulson, whose powerful shot produced an excellent save from the Potter's stopper.
With the score remaining goal-less going into half-time, City continued their dominance after the break and it wasn't long before the deadlock was broken. A quickly-taken free-kick on the edge of the box was finished with a clinical strike from Blues' midfielder Drury.
It was no less than the home side deserved and their possession continued with City delightful on the ball throughout; their typical mix of grit and creativity left fans bewitched as gloomy rain and chilling winds encircled Platt Lane.
Stoke pushed for an equaliser towards the end of the game, leaving the Potters' vulnerable at the back. Top scorer Hiwula exploited the opportunity to score on the break.
The striker skipped through the Stoke defence but was met with a messy challenge in the box from two of the visiting defenders. The referee duly awarded a penalty and Hiwula stepped up to make his tally eight goals for the season and secured all three points.
Head of Academy Mark Allen was understandably thrilled by City's exciting performance.
"It was a very, very good performance today," he smiled. "The boys produced great football from start to finish against a physical Stoke side. Nonetheless, football won out adn the boys kept to their game plan.
They worked extremely hard for each other, played some great football and thoroughly deserved the result
"There's no stopping Hiwula is there at the moment. He had a few chances today and it was probably one of his of days if I'm being honest. Nevertheless, like all good goal-scorers, when there's a chance to be taken he takes it.
"I think the first team are giving a great lift to the whole football club with what they are doing and producing at the moment. It's resonated through the club and it's paying dividends for us at youth level."