Cats young­sters edged out at Liver­pool

Sunderland Echo - - Sport -

Sun­der­land Un­der-18s re­sumed their league pro­gramme af­ter the Christ­mas break by suf­fer­ing a nar­row 1-0 de­feat at the hands of lead­ers Liver­pool at Mel­wood, writes Neville Pilk­ing­ton.

Be­cause of in­juries to the strik­ers, the game plan was a de­fen­sive 5-4-1 for­ma­tion, set up to largely frus­trate and con­tain the Reds and it al­most worked.

Nor­mal wide man Ryan Leonard was alone up front and al­though slight of build, used his pace well down ei­ther side of the cen­tral de­fend­ers.

The plan lim­ited Liver­pool to just one shot on tar­get in the first half in the 32 sec­ond minute which keeper An­thony Pat­ter­son turned round the post in fine style.

The sec­ond half con­tin­ued in the same vein but the hosts did get the break­through with the only goal on the hour mark.

It was scored by Lewis Longstaff - a for­mer New­cas­tle Academy player who switched to Liver­pool at the age of 14 who shot just in­side the post from 15 yards.

Sun­der­land now pushed tall de­fender An­dreas Ed­munds­son up front in a bid to come back and the lad from the Faroe Isles did cause prob­lems but un­for­tu­nately for Sun­der­land there was no end prod­uct.

Coach Paul Bryson said: “We played well with pur­pose and good dis­ci­pline es­pe­cially when out of pos­ses­sion which was of­ten the case against the top of the league side.”

Sun­der­land: Pat­ter­son, Tri­al­list (Kennedy 46), Ed­munds­son, Der­bali, Al­mond, Howard, Smith (Devine 75), Evans, Scoth­ern, Miller (Slack 45), Leonard. Subs not used: Bassey, Lil­ley.

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