Bolton U18s v Everton U18s
Everton Under-18s returned to competitive action in confident fashion on Saturday, recording a 2-1 win away to Bolton Wanderers.
The young Blues have seen the second half of their season disrupted by postponements due to the recent foul weather - a 3-2 home win over Reading on 12 January their only non-friendly fixture since 10 December.
But continuing where they left off against the Royals, Kevin Sheedy's side put hosts Bolton to the sword thanks to a brace from Chris Long.
Despite Everton starting well and carving out several good chances in the first half, Wanderers took the lead on 38 minutes.
A free-kick out wide was delivered in with such threat that it evaded everyone in a crowded box and nestled in the bottom corner of Russell Griffith's goal.
The Blues responded after the break and midway through the second period George Waring fed Long through on goal and the forward made no mistake with a clinical finish.
Now level, Everton continued to tighten their grip on the contest and got their reward two minutes from time.
Harry Charsley was this time the provider as he found Long who drove the ball low and across the goalkeeper into the back of the net.
That sealed all three points for the Toffees, who now sit top of the table after the opening two fixtures of the Elite group - and Sheedy told evertonfc.com how a fellow Blues legend may have been pivotal to the outcome.
He told evertonfc.com: "Duncan Ferguson has been doing a lot of training with Chris Long to work on his finishing. He was very clinical today so that appears to have paid dividends.
"We've made a good start to this new league. We've beaten the teams that finished top and second before Christmas so they are terrific results.
"We didn't play as well as we could, but that might have been expected as we are probably a bit rusty from not playing much recently. We were the better team though and the lads showed a lot of effort and desire today."