Saturday, 17 September 2016

Grimsby Town 1 v Mansfield Town 3 - FLYA NE

Saturday 17th September 2016
EFL U18 Youth Alliance (NE)
at Grimsby Town Training Ground, Cheapside, Waltham
Grimsby Town (1) 1
Jamie Goddard 19
Mansfield Town (3) 3
Zayn Hakeem 6, 35, Ashanti Pryce 35
For more photos from this game click: HERE
Grimsby Town:
Oakley Heath-Drury, Alex McMillan, Mikey Davis (Corey Briggs 86), Adam Lawis, Cameron Howe, Jack Keeble, Dec Slater (Myles Lawman 60), Jamie Goddard, Lawrence Burchell (Charlie Loft 60), Tom Sawyer, Ben Flowerdue (Bilal Sassey 65)
Unused sub - Ryan Evans
Mansfield Town:
Sam Wilson, Teddy Bloor, Henri Wilder, Cain Smith (C), Kane Baldwin, Kieran Harrison, Nyle Blake (Surafel Behailu 88), Cameron Healey, Zayn Hakeem, Ashanti Pryce (Keaton Ward 64), Tom  Marriott (Devante Reittie 57)
Unused subs - Harry Bircumshaw, Aiden Walker
The Stags youth team enjoyed a run of good results against the Mariners last season, with Morgan Ratcliffe and Zayn Hakeem finding the back of the net as John Dempster's young Stags clinched the league championship with a 2-0 win at Cheapside in April, to complete a treble over the Mariners, who they defeated narrowly at home with a solitary goal back in December and eliminated from the League Cup in Waltham, after a 4-2 penalty shoot out finale decided the outcome of a 1-1 draw in August.
Grimsby have made an indifferent start to the current season, although they did beat their county rivals Lincoln City in a cup game last week. while Mansfield are still unbeaten in all competitions, having overcome a two goal deficit to claim a draw away from home against a highly rated Shrewsbury Town side last weekend, to qualify for the next round of the cup with a home game against Walsall still to go, which will be played on Saturday 22nd October 2016.
The game got underway at a frantic pace, in a biting wind diagonal wind that cut across across the exposed Cheapside ground. But the Stags were brewing up a storm of their own and blew their hosts away with a double whammy inside the opening eleven minutes.
The Mariners were penalised for obstruction twenty five yards from their own goal and though their defensive wall did it's job and blocked Tom Marriott's free kick, his powerful shot ricocheted into the air and dropped for Zayn Hakeem who instinctively knocked it past Oakley Heath-Drury to put the Stags ahead.
Hakeem was involved in the Stags second goal too, when Nyle Blake picked him out with a pinpoint cross after seeing off two challenges on the right flank, which the Stags striker rolled back into the path of Ashanti Pryce who drilled the ball into the bottom left hand corner of the net.
Henri Wilder picked out Hakeem with a measured ball into the Grimsby area, but his shot skimmed over the bar.
Tom Sawyer was a stand out player for the home side but when he carved an opening for Lex McMillan and Laurence Burchell and they looked to play the ball inside to Jamie Goddard, Kieran Harrison made sure that never the twain shall meet as he hooked it away to safety.
Cameron Healey won a headed challenge and directed the ball into the path of Marriott who advanced forward before shooting, but Jack Keeble blocked his shot and Grimsby countered down the right flank, where Wilder was exposed wit two players to cover as McMillan tore past him and crossed to Burchell, whose first time shot was blocked but Goddard got to the rebound first and pulled a goal back from just outside the area.
The goal lifted Grimsby for a while and they pushed forward again but Harrison dealt with Dec Slater's right wing corner after the Mariners midfielder had made good use of the wind to deliver the ball into the danger zone.
The home side looked threatening again when Goddard's free kick was headed down by Adam Lawis into the path of Cameron Howe, but he turned the ball wide of the right hand post.
Blake attacked on the right, drawing two defenders towards him and planted the ball through the gap they had left to the feet of Hakeem; Heath-Drury was quickly off his line to narrow the angle though and the live-wire front man directing his chance just past the right hand upright and into the side netting.
But Hakeem was on target from the Stags next attack, when Blake ghosted past two tackles and laid a sideways pass into the path of the Mansfield number 9, who restored the visitors two goal cushion as he swept the ball past Heath-Drury from ten yards.
The Cheapside pitch has been widened this season and the Stags were using the wings to good effect, with Teddy Bloor combining well with Blake as Kane Baldwin plugged the gap he left when he frequently got forward in support of the attackers and Wilder was combining linking up with Marriott on the left, with a personal tussle against McMillan. Cameron Healey and Cain Smith were holding the fort in midfield, with the sort of confident, assured manner that stems from having such a reliable pairing backing them up as Baldwin and Harrison.
The home side cleared Marriott's left wing corner, but only as far as Cain Smith who delivered a dipping cross towards Harrison, but Heath-Drury got up well to gather the ball.
Healey picked up possession on the left hand side of Grimsby's area and chipped the ball towards the back stick, to where Blake made a darting run and was desperately unlucky to see his effort go wide of the post.
Right on the stroke of half time Pryce almost claimed a fourth goal for the visitors, but his thumping shot from Smith's cross, glanced wide of the post off of a Grimsby defender.
HT: Mariners Youth 1 v Stags Youth 3
It is ironic that all of the goals were scored in the first half, because after the break the Stags demonstrated why they are reigning champions and league leaders, with a great display of fast passing attacking football, as they put the home side on the back foot with wave upon wave of forward play.
Pryce laid the ball out wide the Blake and ran on to take the return pass, before unleashing a blistering shot that Hetah-Drury turned round his left hand post at full stretch.
Keeble had to lungee in with a last ditch challenge on Hakeem, when Bloor had unlocked the home side's rearguard with a clever knock.
The Mariners launched a long clearance into the Stags half that Wilder headed back firmly in the direction from which it had come, finding Pryce who played it out wide to Hakeem, who sprinted forward taking three Grimsby players with him before turning and knocking the ball back Bloor, whose first time cross found Pryce, but the linesman decreed that he had strayed marginally offside.
Marriott, having taken a heavy knock, was replaced by Devante Reittie and the home side now had to contend with two central strikers tearing through the middle, supported by Hakeem and Blake on the flanks. But still, to their credit, the Mariners parked the bus and repelled a tidal wave of Stags attacks.
Mikey Davis, seeing no options to pass in front of him, tore forward forty yards from his left back berth, before nudging the ball forward to Burchell, but Wilson had read the developing situation well and came off his line to smother the ball at the centre forward's feet.
But after that brief interlude, the Stags show of strength resumed, as Wilder won the ball in the Grimsby half before taking three strides forward and trying his luckfrom thirty yards out, only to be denied by the outstretched leg of Lawis.
The visitors were knocking the ball around well, with training ground passing drills that must have had John Dempster and Mark Peters drooling with pleasure.
More chances went begging as the visitors looked to turn the screw; Heath-Drury pulled off a great close range save from Reittie, who had sprinted through the defence to meet Blake's cross over the home side's left back.
And Blake went close himself when he got onto the end of Hakeem's cross from the left.
Keaton Ward came on from the bench and gave the Grimsby defence a different sort of problem to contend with as he chased down and battled for every ball, he almost added an elusive fourth goal when he cleverly chipped the ball over Keeble ans homed in on goal, but a crowded Mariners defence cleared their lines.
In  the closing exchanges, the home side pushed forward to give the scoreline a more respectable look, than the 3-1 that scarcely resembled the way that the visitors had dominated, but as Tom Sawyer and Charlie Lofts tried battering their way through towards Wilson's goal, Baldwin and Harrison closed down their attacking options and the young Stags left Linconshire with all three points and a very convincing win under their belts.
FT: Grimsby Town U18 1 v Mansfield Town U18 3