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U18's vs. Man Utd (H) Sat 26th Sept - Match Report

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For the first time in a long time I was at Hurworth to watch Middlesbrough U18s take on their Manchester United counterparts.


With Niall McGoldrick and Harry Chapman involved with the U21s in their defeat to Manchester City at U21 level yesterday it was a fresh faced Middlesbrough side that lined up.


Manchester United settled quickly into their stride forcing Boro back through the pace of Marcus Rashford and a quick tempo.  Boro took their time to come to terms with United’s threat and were first to create a goal scoring opportunity. Good play by Liam Heggarty won the ball on the right side playing in Mitchell Curry who squared the ball across the box to Marcus Tavernier who took the ball onto his left foot but his strike was too central and the United keeper saved easily.


Both teams were moving the ball around well but chances were at a premium. United nearly took the lead when a left side cross was met by Rashford inside the Boro six yard box. The forward took it on the full with his side foot but Tom Dawson got down well to it and pushed it wide.


Boro’s main threat was Mitchell Curry, he had scored 4 times at the start of the game and was ploughing a lone furrow up top with little support. He was found well by Ben Liddle and Curry raced away on the left side, he was defended well though and couldn’t cut in on his favoured right foot to create a shop for himself so laid it back into the path of Liddle who pulled his shot wide.


United broke the deadlock though, Marcus Rashford with a clinical finish across the diving Dawson into the corner of the net.


GOAL – Man Utd Rashford 0-1


Middlesbrough were on the back foot, Captain Alex Pattison had a good chance with a well struck free kick which was blocked away but it was the visitors who extended their lead. The ball came in from the left Rashford struck across the ball and into the far corner again across Dawson to double the lead.


GOAL – Man Utd Rashford 0-2


A fantastic run by Pattison ended with a penalty appeal being rightfully waved away by the referee before Boro had their best chance of the half. Ben Liddle rose superbly despite being fouled by Jimmy Dunne (?) to flick the ball on for the advancing Curry he outpaced RoShaun Williams (I think?) but his left foot strike was saved well by the legs of the United keeper.


Half Time Middlesbrough 0 Manchester United 2


Sub – United 3 off, 12 on


United could have extended their lead early in the second half when Rashford played in the United 11 but his shot went straight into the stomach of Dawson who held onto it.  It was becoming more of an open game, Alex Pattison had a chance for Boro but dragged his shot well wide.

Callum Gribbin was pulling all the strings for United, a classy left footer who makes everything look like it’s in slow motion. He played a superbly weighted ball into the path of Rashford who looked destined to claim the hat trick ball but for a fantastic sliding block by young Anthony Renton, who slid in just as Rashford hit it and got the ballot safety. Rashford had another chance moments later working the ball onto his right foot at the centre of the 18 yard box but he struck it straight at Dawson.


Sub – United 8 off, 14 Angel Gomez on.

Sub – Boro Wilson off, O’Neill on, Lambert on Pattison off.


Boro seemed to be getting joy down the right hand side with overlapping full back Liam Heggarty, and it was from a low cross that Curry should have pulled one back from. He met it inside the six yard box but couldn’t pull it back far enough and shot wide. This combination did pay off though another low Heggarty cross found Curry more central and he put it in for this 5th of the season.


GOAL - Boro Curry


Dawson had to keep his concentration firstly making a good save for a corner then from the resulting corner there was a melee in the box the ball bouncing about like a pinball before Boro could clear.


Sub – Boro Jardine off, Convery on.


With Jardine being replaced Heggarty moved into the right side of midfield and Convery at right back.  Rashford was using his pace to attach the Boro back line and catch them out but Convery found his feet quickly stopping Rashford twice high up the pitch with well times tackles.


Angel Gomez nearly extended United’s lead getting the ball in the middle of the field 20 yards out he curled the ball to Dawson’s right, with the ball curling away from the keeper he was pleased to see it clip the outside of the post and go wide for a goal kick. Lambert had a chance at the other end but he couldn’t beat the keeper shooting straight at him.


Full Time Middlesbrough 1 (Curry) Manchester United 2 (Rashford)


Boro: Dawson, Heggarty, Reading, Tavernier, Cook, Renton, J Wilson (O’Neill), Pattison © (Lambert), Curry, Liddle, Jardine (Convery)



Boro took their time to get going but did very well against a powerful and pace filled Manchester United side.  Heggarty and Jardine linked well on the right supporting Curry who was a permanent thorn in the defence’s side. Pattison looked composed and led well but overall United just had too much all around talent. MOTM Marcus Rashford. Took his goals well, powerful attacker who looks like he will be a goal machine at this level


U16s Result Middlesbrough 1 Manchester United 0

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