After last night’s draw for the reserves against West Ham, United’s under-18s showed their resilience securing three points against Bolton at Carrington.
Manchester United took an early lead through Mats Daehli after a squared ball inside the box from Jack Barmby. In the build-up to the goal, the Reds looked keen to make a quick start. Daehli, the goalscorer, was among others wanting the ball at his feet before making intelligent runs behind Bolton’s back four.
The game slowed down a little when United went ahead. We looked conformable but still created chances. The Trotters on the other hand were unable to stop our movement on and off the ball which caused problems all over the pitch. United’s method of keeping the ball didn’t help their case either. It looked like a training drill at times with at least three Red jerseys forming a triangular shape.
Bolton’s first opportunity came after 41 minutes when a swinging corner met Hendrie on the head but went wide. They were granted another two corners shortly after but both resulted in similar fashion. As the game went on, however, The Trotters came into it more. Perhaps fighting shock after conceding early on.
Looking back at the first half it was pretty even with Bolton creating a handful of chances near the end. Throughout the first 45 minutes though, United had most of the possession. Neither manager made a change after the interval.
The second half immediately started with a scrappy tactical layout from Bolton, but United still managed to keep the ball. A goal or two would settle things for United and kill Bolton off but they need to put a limit on passing in the final third for that to happen. They seemed reluctant to shoot from outside the box for much of the first half.
After cleaning their act up, Bolton had a great chance after 50 minutes. Youngs was sent through on Joel Pereira, making his debut between the sticks, but failed to keep his shot down. Note: the goalkeeper is no relation to Manchester United substitute Andreas Pereira.
Having scuffed a chance minutes before, Youngs scored from a tap in gifting Bolton an equaliser. Although we can’t say it wasn’t deserved seen as it has been remarkably even since the interval. United responded well creating a chance straight away which Ryan McConnell should have scored from but it wasn’t to be.
The tempo slowed down as chances for both teams became few and far between. Jack Barmby did well to cross a ball into Sam Byrne, who forced Sievers to make a save after 75 minutes. Players from either side were beginning to become tired and Bolton sat back making them even more difficult to break down.
With ten minutes to go, Bolton were 2-1 down. Barmby did superbly inside the box dribbling around defenders before his shot was deflected off Bailey. It will have to go down as an own goal, so we got our bit of luck.
That’s five defeats from five league games for Bolton. United’s U18s have a record of 8 wins from 11.
1. Joel Pereira
2. Liam Grimshaw
4. Declan Dalley (14. Andreas Pereira ’78)
5. Ryan McConnell
3. Callum Evans
7. James Weir
6. Ben Pearson
8. Jack Rudge
9. Sam Byrne
11. Mats Daehli
10. Jack Barmby
Subs not used
12. Matthew Willock
13. Pierluigi Gollini
15. Josh Harrop
16. Ashley Fletcher
Bolton: Sievers, Hendrie, Holding, Gibson, Nolan, Newby, Bailey, Wolstenholme, Walker, Hamer, Youngs.