Fylde youth football review: Blackpool and Poulton leagues
There was a shock in the Gold Bond Blackpool and District Youth Football League's Under-13 Alpha Gold Division as lowly Poulton managed to inflict BJFF Blades' first defeat of the season.
Poulton secured an excellent 3-2 win courtesy of goals from Aaron Pope, Yande Nkonge and Matthew Seal, with Donny Barrat and James Wilde replying.
This allowed Foxhall to extend their lead at the top to four points – though the Blades still have two games in hand – as goals from Kaiden Shorrocks, Dylan Henshall, Aiden Wright and Oliver Connell gave them a 4-1 win over Thornton Cleveleys Reds, for whom Fraser Hallas was on target.
Meanwhile, Fleetwood Town won 4-2 at YMCA, with both teams contributing to an entertaining contest at an overcast and bitterly cold Seafield Road.
The opening stages were evenly contested, with both teams creating chances but it was Town who opened the scoring by capitalising on a defensive error.
Ten minutes later, the visitors doubled their lead from an unstoppable free-kick from 25 yards and they added a third just before the interval to give them a 3-0 lead.
The visitors increased their lead after the restart, though to YMCA’s credit they continued to display good spirit and pulled two goals back in the closing stages, both by the impressive Oli Hesford.
Nat Gili-Ross, Angelo Vinci and Gabriel Ward were all notable for YMCA, while Fleetwood Town’s goals came from Jordan Rankine, Matthew Tomlinson, Alex McLoughlin and Tyler Alunan.
In the Silver Division, Billy Ogden scored both goals as leaders Layton remain eight points clear at the top after beating Lytham Blues 2-0.
There were hat- tricks for Prince Yelegon and Adam Meadows as Thornton Cleveleys Whites remain second after beating Foxhall Hoops 6-2. Connor Satchel scored both replies.
Goals from Kyle Costin, Louis Eunson, Leo Rodikis, Finlay Best and Kallum Illingworth weren’t enough for Lytham Maroons to take all three points as they drew 5-5 with FC Rangers.
Matthew Guy scored his eighth hat-trick of the season for Rangers, while Carl Wallace and Justin also struck the back of the net to give their side a share of the spoils.
Kirkham Reds beat BJFF Vipers 4-1 thanks to goals from Jack Iddeson (2), Brett Higginson and Dominic Turner. Harley Man netted the consolation.
In the Under-16s Division, leaders Lytham Juniors Home Heat beat Layton 7-1.
Lytham started the quicker on a cold afternoon at Moor Park.
And they opened the scoring through James Ludlam in the first 10 minutes.
The outstanding Max Older doubled the advantage from the penalty spot.
Midway through the half, Layton pulled one back through Aiden Williams but Sam Mitchell restored Lytham’s two-goal advantage before the break.
James Ludlam and Dan Piilling combined well before Ludlam raced clear of the defence and calmly chipped the advancing goalkeeper to score his second and Lytham’s fourth.
He completed his hat-trick minutes later, volleying home Caleb Griffith’s cross before tapping in his fourth.
Kai Clarkson Lowe completed the scoring following fine work from debutant Sean Bryne.
Billy Gallagher and Daniel Chase gave impressive performances, while the goals came from Steven Lambert (2), Sydney Sullivan, Oliver Medhurst, Oliver Holt and Max Resina.
Goals from Jack Galloway and Kye Wylie helped FC Rangers edge out Spirit of Youth 2-1, with Kyle Townsend on target for Spirit.
Liam Booth scored the only goal as St Annes Greens beat Warton Typhoons 1-0.
There was only one game in the U18s league and goals from Jack McGlue, Alex Varley and Reece Rogers weren’t enough to give St Annes the points as they lost 4-3 to Fleetwood Town.
In the Poulton and District Primary League’s Classic Cup, BJFF Blades Whites secured their passage through to the semi-final stage as they beat St Annes 6-5 on penalties after drawing 2-2 in normal time.
It was end-to-end stuff in the first half, with both teams showing their qualities, but neither side managed to take the upper hand.
But St Annes broke the deadlock in the first minute of the second period, with a header from a corner creeping past the defender on the line.
This gave them a boost and they could have easily extended their lead with two more attacks.
But BJFF got back into the game with a ball through the middle that Taylor Shaw latched on to only to see his shot well saved.
However, Luca Morelli pounced quickly to slam the ball into the back of the net.
The end-to-end nature of the game continued, with Kayden Lord making some fine slide tackles to thwart St Annes’ attacks. Fletch Rial was also quick off his line to clear as St Annes piled on the pressure.
A great through ball released the St Annes striker to finish coolly into the bottom corner.
BJFF tried to get back into the game but it didn’t seem like their efforts would be enough, with one attempt coming off the crossbar while others went wide of goal.
That was until the last seconds, when Kayden Lord steamed forward and unleashed a shot which flew over the crossbar after a St Annes defender got a foot in the way.
Everyone came forward for the BJFF corner and Max Johnson’s delivery was perfect.
A scramble ensued until Stefan Van Blerk fired home to the roar of the home crowd.
The game finished 2-2, meaning a penalty shoot-out was needed to separate the two sides, who fired in three perfect spot-kicks each.
Taylor Shaw scored BJFF’s fourth before Fletcher Rial made a vital save.
This handed the advantage to BJFF, but the St Annes keeper produced a great save to keep his side in it.
The St Annes keeper saved again in sudden death to give them the advantage. Fletcher Rial produced another fine stop.
Both scored their next penalties but Fletcher Rial produced his third save of the shoot-out after Fin Hambly scored BJFF’s eighth penalty to secure their passage through to the next round.
Meanwhile, Blackpool Rangers Seasiders U11s won 2-1 in their Classic Plate quarter-final against BJFF Blades Blues.
Callum Stone and Connor Iles bagged Rangers’ goals as they secured their semi-final place.
YMCA U12s came out on top in their 2-0 win against Blackpool Rangers.
YMCA had most of the possession in the first half without being able to penetrate the visitors’ rearguard, while at the other end Rangers always posed problems with some speedy attacks on the break.
It remained a goalless stalemate at half-time and a similar pattern emerged after the restart.
YMCA’s pressure eventually paid off and strikes by Yash Passi and Kaiden Pirrie earned them a deserved victory. Ross Hurst impressed throughout for YMCA.
YMCA U14s also won 2-0 in their game against BJFF.
All previous meetings between these sides had been close contests and this proved to be no different.
YMCA had the better of the early stages without being able to penetrate the visitors’ defence.
BJFF came closest to opening the scoring when a fine effort from 30 yards struck YMCA’s crossbar.
Immediately afterwards, YMCA also saw an effort from Callum Fielding hit the visitors’ woodwork and a shot from Jacob Grice went narrowly wide as the first half ended goalless.
YMCA started the second half brightly, pressing the visitors back into their own half, but some poor finishing as well as resolute defending and goalkeeping kept the scoresheet blank.
YMCA’s pressure eventually brought its reward when Grice bundled a Lucas Miller corner into the net.
As BJFF pushed forward for an equaliser, more chances for YMCA were created but BJFF almost snatched an equaliser on the break with a shot which narrowly missed the far post.
YMCA sealed the victory when Dimitri Jackson fired in a free- kick from 30 yards which soared over the helpless keeper and into the roof of the net.
Danny Inman was outstanding throughout for YMCA, with Liam Brown also impressive.
The 2-0 scorelines continued as YMCA U15s saw off Warton Typhoons.
YMCA were generally on top in the first half but failed to capitalise on numerous chances.
They eventually managed to find the visitors’ net with a strike by Jake Molloy to take a 1-0 lead into half-time.
A similar pattern emerged after the restart and a second goal from the impressive Molloy sealed the points for YMCA.
Olly Fishwick and new signing Cameron Leigh were both notable for YMCA, who were unlucky to see five efforts come back off the woodwork.