EFL YOUTH ALLIANCE CUP REGIONAL QUARTER FINAL
Saturday October 9th, 10.30am
NORTHAMPTON TOWN UNDER 18s 2
Jack Connor 36
Rico Duggan 50
SOUTHEND UNITED UNDER 18s 1
Mohammed Amir 73
Cobblers: James Dadge, Brad Smith-Howes, Courtney Lashley (sub Tommy Curry 79), Dylan Hill, Miguel Ngwa, Peter Abimbola, Jack Connor (sub Kenny Ndefo 88), Kai O’Keeffe, Rico Duggan (sub Ethan Lack 72), Josh Tomlinson, David Sarpong
Subs not used: Niall Shackleton, Josh Brown
Northampton Town Under 18s progressed to the regional semi final of the EFL Youth Alliance Cup with a 2-1 win at home to Southend United on Saturday.
Jack Connor and Rico Duggan scored the young Cobblers’ goals. Connor has three in as many games and Duggan has three in four.
Coach Shane Goddard made eight changes to the side that knocked Wellingborough Whitworth Red out of the David Joyce Cup less than 48 hours earlier.
One of the three players that retained their place in the squad, Kai O’Keeffe, hit the outside of the post after a run down the right wing early on.
Cobblers captain Peter Abimbola’s header from Courtney Lashley’s corner was blocked on the line and Connor was unable to follow up from close range after 10 minutes.
O’Keeffe had another opportunity midway through the first half, but he nodded wide from Miguel Ngwa’s deep cross.
Southend’s only clear chance came on the half-an-hour mark when skipper Jaden Crowhurst drove into the area and dragged his shot wide.
The Cobblers opened the scoring 10 minutes before the break when Connor dispossessed goalkeeper Finlai Purcell and rolled the ball into the empty net.
Duggan doubled the lead early in the second period, moving the ball out of his feet and firing a low shot into the bottom corner.
James Dadge made a great save to preserve his side’s two-goal advantage soon after, diving to his left and palming away a drive from substitute Mohammed Amir.
However, there was nothing the Dadge could do when Amir pulled a goal back with a quarter-of-an-hour remaining, converting at the back post after a cross made its way through a crowd of bodies.
Despite late Southend pressure, including a low Brian Gazzon shot which went narrowly wide of the post in added time, the youth team held on to knock out their opponents. They return to Youth Alliance League action when they host Cambridge United in a fortnight.
COBBLERS MATCH STATS (first half in brackets, match total out of brackets)
SHOTS ON TARGET: (4) 6
SHOTS OFF TARGET: (6) 10
CORNERS: (1) 3
FOULS: (4) 12
CAUGHT OFFSIDE: (0) 2
SOUTHEND UNITED MATCH STATS (first half in brackets, match total out of brackets)
SHOTS ON TARGET: (1) 4
SHOTS OFF TARGET: (5) 14
CORNERS: (3) 6
FOULS: (2) 6
CAUGHT OFFSIDE: (2) 4