EDS & Academy

UYL dream kept alive after Shakhtar comeback

COMEBACK: City sealed their first Uefa Youth League win
UEFA Youth League
UEFA Youth League
Wed 7 Nov
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A brilliant second-half performance from our Under-19s sealed a 4-1 win over Shakhtar Donetsk...

Shakhtar entered the break in the lead through skipper Maksym Chekh's strike, but a second half flurry of goals from Taylor Richards (2), Benjamin Garre and Lorenzo Gonzalez saw City seal their first Uefa Youth League victory this season.

What happened

Before the match, Paul Harsley’s side sat third in their Uefa Youth League group on a single point after two losses and a draw. The academy team knew that they needed a win if they were to stand any chance of continuing in the competition as a loss would’ve seen their European dream come to an end.

City were clearly the more dominant side, weaving through the visitors ranks, owning a majority of the possession and creating a number of chances.

The Blues were incredibly unlucky not to make it onto the scoresheet in the first half, with Rabbi Matondo and Ian Poveda running riot on the wings and constantly setting up their teammates.

We should have taken the lead after just a few minutes when Nathanael Ogbeta launched into the air to head a bullet-like effort towards the top corner, but Anatolii Trubin was alert and on hand for the visitors to tip the defender’s attempt over the crossbar.

Just moments later, it again looked as though we would move in front, this time through Taylor Richards.

Jeremie Frimpong whipped down the flank, beautifully setting up Richards in the box for a tap-in. However, the midfielder struck the ball with just too much power and what looked like a certain goal, ended up in the stands.

The young Blues did well not to get frustrated and were repaid for their patience.

City teased Trubin with a number of chances, but it was Richards’ superb curling strike which brought the game level. Then, after a missed opportunity, Richards made it two for City after Matondo was brought down in the box and a penalty was awarded.

After that, the floodgates were opened.

Garre made an almost instant impact when he replicated Richards’ first goal to make it three for City, and fellow substitute Lorenzo Gonzalez soon followed suit.

The result was fully deserved by Harsley’s side and stands our Under-19s in great stead heading into our two remaining European fixtures.

How we lined up

Curtis Anderson took his place in goal shielded by a back four of Jeremie Frimpong, Colin Rosler, Taylor Harwood-Bellis and Nathanael Ogbeta.

Skipper Claudio Gomes was employed in his defensive midfield role alongside Tom Dele-Bashiru and Taylor Richards.

Ian Poveda and Rabbi Matondo flanked Nabil Touaizi up front.

What it means

City remain third in thr Group F table, but increase our points tally to four, three behind Lyon and six behind Hoffenheim.

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