Academy updates from Spanish trip
Following Saturday’s good work the Northampton Town Academy U14 squad found themselves through to the semi finals of the Football Cup Barcelona after topping group A, where Slovenian opponents NS Miklavz Dobrovce awaited. The game proved a greater test in comparison to what had gone before, with the Cobblers opponents showing good intent from the start. It was Northampton Town who took a deserved lead midway through the first half, Jack Daldy turning in from close range. The Cobblers never looked likely to concede, until a rare corner late in the first half saw a good header converted to make it 1-1.
The second half was much of a one way affair, with Cobblers knocking on the door but unable to find that elusive winner. A penalty shoot out was to decide the tie, in which goalkeeper Adam North became hero of the hour, saving two spot kicks to send Northampton through to the final.
An early evening final pitched the Cobblers against our second Belgian opponents of the weekend, RCS Brainois, a very direct physical side who proved a difficult challenge for the squad with many involved playing against boys 12 to 18 months their senior. Despite controlling the game and displaying far superior football, against opposition who looked to break up play and slow the game down through their physical superiority, the young Cobblers were unable to break the deadlock.
So again it was to be decided by another penalty shoot out. This time lady luck wasn’t on the Cobblers side, and the boys found themselves on the wrong side of a 3-1 scoreline.
A very disappointed group of team mates made their way to collect their runners up medals, much to their frustration and disappointment, however some consolation came when striker Jack Daldy received the award for top goal scorer.
Despite being edged out in the final, the trip has been a great success with the boys experiencing competitive tournament football, against a variety of opposition and in a foreign country for the first time. A big thank you to all those involved in organising and running the tournament.