Pools Youth Team turned in an impressive performance to claim their first win of the new Youth Alliance League season against Scunthorpe United on Saturday.
Having drawn their opening game 2-2, Ian McGuckin’s youngsters looked determined to build on that when they welcomed The Iron to Blackhall’s Welfare Park at the weekend.
They had to remain patient in their search for the opening goal despite dominating possession during the early exchanges; Jack Leonard saw a couple of half-chances come and go, while Liam Pritchard fired a shot just over from the edge of the box.
The breakthrough arrived midway through the first half though, when Pools were able to intercept possession in their own half and counter-attack with real pace. The ball was worked out wide for Josh Scott and he delivered a pinpoint cross for Brad Fox to head home.
However, the visitors responded well and had a couple of opportunities to score before finally finding a way through to equaliser through Joe Busby on 28 minutes.
Pools were back in front ten minutes before the break when they pressed high and forced a mistake from the Scunthorpe centre-back which allowed Leonard to square the ball for Scott to slot home.
McGuckin’s side were the dominant force again during the second half, dictating possession without creating too many in the way of clear cut chances but always in control defensively.
Joe Jackson came off the bench to score the clinching goal late on, racing through one on one with the keeper who made a save from his first shot but was powerless to stop him blasting home the rebound from close range.
“I am really pleased with the start to the season and that we’ve managed to get that first win,” McGuckin told us.
“We haven’t got a game next weekend which is a shame because we would have loved to keep the momentum going but they were rewarded for good performance.
“I think they now realise how hard they need to work to reach the standards we’re demanding of them but overall I’m really pleased so far, particularly because we do have a very young squad.”
Full Time: Pools 3 Scunthorpe united 1
Pools: Young, Naylor, Miller, Murphy, Webster, Boyle, Rennison, Leonard, Pritchard, Scott (Jackson 85), Fox.
Subs not used: Roxburgh, Thomson, Augusto.