Home ยป Academy Match Report: Wolverhampton Wanderers u18s 1-0 Manchester United u18s

Academy Match Report: Wolverhampton Wanderers u18s 1-0 Manchester United u18s

by Colm Murphy
Shea Lacey

Manchester United u18s returned from the international break on Saturday morning with an away fixture at Wolverhampton Wanderers in their second group stage match of the Premier League Cup.

It was evident from the off that the match was going to be a tight affair between two of the top Premier League North sides.

United took control of possession in the early stages but Wolves’ press proved to be difficult to break through and United were forced to settle for half chances down the left wing from Harry Amass and Shea Lacey.

A match of fine margins, United almost carved an opening in the 20th minute when Ruben Curley won possession high up the pitch and slipped through Ethan Wheatley, but the quick recovery defending from Wolves forced Wheatley out wide and to recycle possession.

Minutes later, Malachi Sharpe’s penalty shouts were waved off by the referee, who deemed the winger to have been fouled just outside the area. Lacey’s effort from the free kick didn’t have enough dip on it to hit the target.

In the 33rd minute, a piece of brilliance from Jack Fletcher opened the space in midfield before he clipped it to the back post for an open Lacey, but an uncharacteristically poor touch from Lacey saw the chance go begging.

United’s best chance of the day then came when Curley’s through ball put Sharpe through on goal to round the keeper but the winger’s rushed effort went across the open goal and wide of the left post.

Despite beginning to create chances as the half wore on, United had seemingly left their shooting boots at home and the match went into the break deadlocked at 0-0.

The second half continued in much of the same vein. Early chances came for Ethan Wheatley and Sharpe, but neither could find the finish.

Lacey then looked to provide his magic when he skipped past one defender and then another before squeezing between two more, but the sensational run wasn’t matched with an end product as his shot was blocked and fell kindly to the keeper.

Wolves then hit on the break in the 55th minute and an unfortunate bounce from Reece Munro’s challenge saw the ball fall back to the home side, allowing England u17 international Leon Chiwome to run through and slot past Elyh Harrison with one of their only two shots on target during the match.

United then looked to the bench to try make the breakthrough but the next big chance came the way of Wolves in the 80th minute. With United pushing high up the pitch, the back was left exposed but a huge Peter Schmeichel style save from Harrison kept United in with a fighting chance.

Fighting until the last minute, it wasn’t to be United’s day though and the match ran out 1-0 to Wolves. The result sees the group all even on 3 points but United remain on top due to goal difference. The final match of the group comes next month as United travel south to Southampton.

United: Harrison, McAllister, Jackson, Munro, Amass, Baumann (Biancheri 75), Curley, Sharpe, Fletcher (Devaney 60), Lacey, Wheatley (Musa 60)

Unused subs: Myles, Kukonki

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