Youth Team’s Winning Run Continues

Luke Chapman, Hartlepool United Youth Team

Pools’ in-form Youth Team made it four wins on the bounce with a battling 2-0 triumph over York City at Welfare Park on Wednesday afternoon.

Ian McGuckin’s men came in to the game still unbeaten in 2020 and they very rarely looked in danger against The Minstermen and victory took them within three points of their visitors in the table with a game in hand.

Luke Chapman and Ben Reay were on target during a dominant first half for Pools and, although City came out stronger after the break, they couldn’t find a way back in to the game.

After a scrappy start Pools were in front with just five minutes gone when the referee spotted a foul inside the area, though there was controversy to follow. Chapman’s spot-kick was brilliantly clawed away by the York keeper only for the referee to order a re-take after adjudging that the ball had been blown off its spot during the run-up. The second kick was blasted home to give Pools the lead.

It was 2-0 midway through the first half when a neat move down the left provided Reay with the chance to whip a cross in and, while two Pools players did try and get on the end of it, their presence merely put the keeper off and the ball flashed across the area and in to far corner of the net.

There were more firm tackles than clear-cut chances in an encounter made difficult by swirling winds but it was City who started brighter at the start of the second half.

However, despite their improvement, they didn’t really trouble the Pools backline and McGuckin’s youngsters came close to making it 3-0 when Coleby Shepherd drilled a shot just over the bar from the edge of the area.

Chapman saw a snapshot from twenty yards flash just wide of the post before another effort just a couple of minutes later drew a fine save from the visiting keeper across to his right.

York’s best chance came ten minutes from time when a sweeping move down the right earned them a shot at goal but it was fired agonisingly over the bar and Pools survived.

“Result-wise we’re really pleased again and the performance was solid enough, given the conditions,” McGuckin told us afterwards.

“We didn’t play as well as I know we can but the lads had to dig in at times because York were always going to provide a big test given that they were second in the table.

“Fair play to the lads, they have done what is required again and kept the run going – we’re starting to get some consistency now so let’s see how far we can go with it.”

Full Time: Pools 2 York City 0

Pools: Lowerson, Miller, Naisbett, Thompson (Sturdy 15), Pilling, Campbell, Reay, Shepherd, Webster, Chapman, Grey (Willoughby 68).
Subs not used: Leonard, James, Gibson.