After a 2 week break from football, City of Liverpool U19’s were looking to start the new year on a high by getting 3 points off a tough side in FC. United. It was an away game in Manchester and after already meeting the side twice before in other competitions losing one and also winning one they were trying to make it 2-1 in wins against FC. United.
In the opening minutes of the game it was a real battle in the midfield as both sides looked to try and regain possession and get on the front foot. The first real chance of the game fell to the Xavier Iwegbu of FC. United who had a free header but missed the target as the ball sailed over the bar. That missed chance would be costly to FC. United as only minutes later Pearson fought off the opposition, dribbled past their midfielder and struck the ball from 35 yards out, watching it fly over the keeper into the top left corner making it 1-0 in the 11th minute. Chances kept coming for both sides, 20 minutes in a cross from the left side of the pitch was swung into the box were Stockley of FC. United, got onto the cross and hit it on the volley, however, Sansbury was equal to the shot and made a good save. In the 32nd minute of the game a through ball was clipped over the defence of the young Purps in search of Muktadir of FC. United who chipped the ball over the outrunning keeper and into the back of the net tying the game at 1-1. The Purps replied instantly after conceding as only 2 minutes later Woods delivered a great diagonal ball into the box which Hamllton got onto chipping the ball over the keeper, deservedly regaining the lead going into half time.
The returning Quillam had a good first half constantly closing down the opposition and did well holding the ball up so the City of Liverpool lads could get further up the pitch, he came off at half time for Louis Kearns.
In the 49th minute, FC. United had a free kick which was crossed into the box and Kirkman who had just been substituted on, scored a header levelling the score at 2-2. Once again it was a real battle in the midfield, however, the young Purps seemed to be getting more of the ball and creating more chances than in the first half. A big chance fell to Hamllton in the box, as the ball was crossed from the left side of the pitch, Jules got onto it but the ball hit the crossbar from a header and City of Liverpool were unlucky not to go ahead once again in the game. The Purps looked to be dominating the game as the bigger chances fell to them, they nearly made it 3-2 in the 65th minute through Griffiths, however, the keeper pulled off a good save to deny them. Most of the possession was coming from the left side of the pitch as City of Liverpool tried to exploit the right back of FC. United who looked to be struggling every time someone tried to take him on. 67 minutes in more substitutes were made, Hamilton who had a brilliant game after coming back from injury and scored a great goal was replaced by Courtney whilst Woods who played well at right back and got an assist was replaced by Fisher. After brilliant play down the left side from The young Purps in the 70th minute the ball fell at the feet of Pearson who stroked the ball hard and low into the bottom right corner making it 3-2 to Purps with only 20 minutes left.
There was only one outcome now when the ball fell to the feet of Peo and after scoring a screamer in the first half, it was no surprise that he buried this chance as well. 80 minutes in, the first booking was given to FC. United’s Fox followed 2 minutes later by a first booking for the young Purps as Griffiths harshly saw a yellow for wasting time. The second half was much better for City of Liverpool as they dominated the possession and seemed to win a lot more tackles than in the first half. FC. United had a final chance in added time, however, the header from inside the box flew over the bar, resulting in The Purps getting the win and 3 points.
Fisher ensured City of Liverpool kept possession and moved the ball from side to side tiring the opponents whilst he camly passed between the lines of FC. United’s midfield.
Kearns played well after coming on, always making runs into the box causing trouble for the defenders and tried to win every ball that came his way. Courtney made his debut for the team and injected more pace into the game as every time he got the ball he caused mayhem for the right back by taking him and whipping a cross into the box, or by having the confidence to shoot.
Partington had a brilliant game, his vision to pick a pass was immense and the execution of every pass was perfect, he didn’t stop running until the final whistle and always caused trouble for FC. United, even when changing position to left back in the second half. Overall it was a brilliant performance from the young Purps against a very good side in FC. United, from defence to attack every player had a great game and contributed to the win. Man of the match was given to Pearson and rightly so, from harassing the opposition off the ball, to scoring a screamer, to getting a brace and the winning goal, Kurtis played outstanding. He was everywhere all over the pitch keeping hold of possession and dragging he Purps forward, he had a massive influence on the game and helped City of Liverpool get all 3 points to take home.
Report by Chloe Bloxham