Intima 55mins, og 76mins
- Match reports
- 24 August 2013 16:49
- Posted by @porter_mcfc / pics by @VHaydn_MCFC
City u18s ran out 2-0 winners away at Sunderland to record the first victory of the new season.
In a game of few clear-cut chances the young Blues enjoyed the majority of possession, and Jorge Intima’s strike gave the visitors a deserved lead ten minutes after the restart. An own goal with 15 minutes left on the clock ensured all three points came back to Manchester.
City were always going to struggle to match last week’s entertainment level, after they came back from 4-1 down with ten men to grab an equaliser against West Brom with virtually the last kick of the game.
This week saw a more controlled performance as Jason Wilcox’s men sought to make their dominance count.
The boy Blues travelled to Sunderland expecting a tough test – the Black Cats topped National Group 1 in the 2012/13 campaign to reach the semi-finals, losing out narrowly at that stage to eventual champions Fulham.
Although the two teams did not meet in league action last season, they did face off in the FA Youth Cup – City running out 3-1 winners.
Wilcox made just one change from last week’s starting XI, bringing in James Horsfield for James Hardy, Horsfield dropping into the right back slot to allow Ashley Smith-Brown to take his place at the base of the midfield.
The young Blues started promisingly, testing the opposing goalkeeper within three minutes of kick off. Brandon Barker saw his shot saved after a mazy run from the left hand side, while Denzeil Boadu fired over and Daniel Lema had a shot blocked in the opening exchanges.
But it was the hosts who should have had the lead after 20 minutes, the striker misdirecting his header wide from close range with keeper Billy O’Brien well-beaten.
As the half went on, the boy Blues were increasingly on top in terms of possession and territory, but a well-organised Sunderland defence restricted the number of clear chances for the visitors to take the lead.
With Jesus Navas for a role model, perhaps it’s unsurprising that wingers Barker and Intima were heavily involved in most of the attacking moves for Wilcox’s men. Barker in particular enjoyed a roaming role on the left-hand side, frequently cutting inside to pass or shoot to good effect.
When the deserved goal finally arrived it came from a set piece - Intima side-footing into the net on the half-volley from a magnificent corner taken by Spanish left-back, Jose Angelino.
City surged forward in search of more, but the floodgates stubbornly refused to budge, even though both Barker and substitute Jack Byrne took excellent shots from outside the area.
The home side had to wait until the 68th minute for their best chance of the half, the ball sailing across the face of the goal as the striker, surrounded by three sky blue shirts, attempted the spectacular shot on the half-turn.
City’s lead doubled not long after, again from a set piece - although this time from a free-kick in an advanced position on the left. The Black Cats proved unable to deal with Barker’s kick and the ball cannoned off the post to hit a defender’s leg and fly in.
It was no more than the Blues’ performance deserved, and Kean Bryan might have added a third right at the death after stealing the ball in midfield, but his well-struck shot was palmed away by the home side’s keeper.
With four points from the first two league games, life has begun brightly under the new boss.
Next up, the u18s face Stoke City in the first home game of the season at Platt Lane on Wednesday. Kick off is at 2pm and we’ll provide you with goal updates on twitter as well as a full match report on mcfc.co.uk.