Lead Youth Phase Coach Tony Sweeney brings us the reports of a good weekend for his age groups in the Academy...
The big good news from the Academy this weekend came from our Under 16s, who have progressed to a Northern Final following a strong season in the North-East Division.
Pools needed to beat Grimsby Town in their final game at the weekend to top the division and move on to the Area Final and that’s exactly what they did. It was a mature display from the Under 16s side to win 4-1.
After controlling the game for large parts of the first half, Pools failed to capitalise on some good build-up play but Josh Scott headed home from a corner on the stroke of half time to take lead. Not long after the break it was two with an Ethan Henderson volley from another set piece.
A defensive mistake allowed the hosts back into game but 2 goals in last 10 minutes from Aiden White and Aaron Willoughby secured a deserved win and saw Pools top the league.
The lads will now take on North West champions Shrewsbury Town in the Northern area final, which is a game we’re all looking forward to. If the Under 16s then beat The Shrews, there will be a National Final waiting.
The lads have done very well over the course of the season and to top the league gives credit to the Academy as we have convincingly beaten academies from League One and Two to get where we are. Now we’re looking forward to testing ourselves against Shrewsbury Town in the Northern Final.
The Under 15s were disappointed to lose their home fixture 3-0. The scores were level at the interval in what was an even contest.
In the second period Pools never got going and a couple of defensive mistakes and some good play from the visitors gave Grimsby Town a comfortable win.
They will be looking to bounce back in their midweek friendly game before taking on Carlisle United on Sunday.
The Under 14s produced a solid if unspectacular away performance to secure a 2-0 win.
Goals came from Michael Nesbitt and Luke Brownless, both from crosses into box and these eased Pools to the victory.
They dominated possession for large parts of game but lacked a cutting edge in the final third that would have made the game more comfortable. A good result and plenty to improve on in the coming weeks.
The Under 13s kept up their recent good form with an impressive victory over their counterparts from Grimsby. Moore burst through to open the scoring in the first minute. A superb strike from Jones doubled the lead before Thompson converted following some good link-up play.
Moore then struck his second with a sharp finish. Grimsby hit back on 21 minutes before Lee restored Pools' advantage with an opportunist strike.
The visitors came more into the game and were rewarded with a fine goal, struck from the edge of the area. Pools however reacted well with Dobinson striking home the goal of the game, with a superb left foot drive. Just after the hour Lee completed the scoring to round off a fine team performance.