EDS & Academy

U18s clinch title with draw

U18s v Everton
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Tue 3 May
City U18s were crowned champions of the Barclays U18 Premier League after drawing 4-4 with Everton on Tuesday.

Jadon Sancho, Lukas Nmecha, Tom Dele-Bashiru and Aaron Nemane grabbed the goals for the young Blues at a chilly Finch Farm. 

Jason Wilcox made one change from the side that beat Blackburn Rovers at the weekend with Nemane coming into the starting XI for Isaac Buckley. 

The start to the game was a fairly quiet one with neither side creating a clear cut chance in the opening 20 minutes. 

Everton had half a chance in that time period but Daniel Grimshaw was aware to the danger to deny Nathan Holland. 

The young shot stopper was involved in the action again in the 21st minute as he pulled off a good save to prevent Liam Morris' shot hitting the back of the net.

City took the lead nine minutes later when Sancho notched his third in two games with a magnificent individual effort. 

The 16-year old took the ball past three defenders before placing the shot beyond the reach of Ciaran O'Loughlin to make it 1-0. 

Everton pushed bodies forward as the first half came to a close and they scored twice in quick succession to give them the lead at the break. 

First, Holland fired an effort past Grimshaw from the edge of the area before Nathan Broadhead gave the home side the lead for the first time just before the half time whistle.

Wilcox's side came out of the blocks firing in the second 45 minutes and drew themselves level within six minutes of the restart. 

Dele-Bashiru played in Nmecha, who deftly chipped the ball over the onrushing O'Loughlin to make it 2-2. 

Dele-Bashiru then added his name to the score sheet in the 53rd minute, applying the finish from ten yards out after O'Loughlin parried away the initial effort. 

A mad eight minutes ended with the young Blues notching a third goal to give them a two-goal advantage. 

Nmecha applied the pressure to O'Loughlin and the Everton goalkeeper rushed his clearance, which landed at the feet of Nemane. 

The 18-year old took a touch to set himself before caressing the ball into the back of the net to make it 4-2 to City. 

Everton once again fought back and reduced the deficit in the 59th minute as Holland added his second of the game with an impressive finish from the edge of the area. 

Following their third goal, the hosts continued to send waves of attacks forward to draw level but were denied by a solid City defence. 

Grimshaw pulled off two excellent saves to deny Morris and then Broadhead from close range. 

However, the 18-year old couldn't do anything about the equaliser when a lofted back post cross was headed home by Callum Lees to set up a tense finish. 

Everton tried to find a fifth that would see the title race sent to the last day but City held on to secure a point and, with it, the Barclays U18 Premier League title. 

Next up for the young Blues is their homecoming game against Fulham at the Academy Stadium on Saturday, 11am kick off. 

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