Saturday 24 February 11:00 , Finch Farm , Attendance:
HT: 1 - 1
  • KO
    • Goal!
      Jacob Beaumont-Clark
    • Goal!
      Lorenze Mullarky-Matthews
  • HT
    • Yellow Card!
      Brandon Powell
    • Goal!
      Zack Stritch
    • Substitution
    • Goal!
      Zack Stritch
    • Substitution
    • Substitution
    • Substitution
  • FT

There is no live blog yet available, please come back at a later time to see the match blog

No Match Data

No Match Data

There is no statistical data available for this game. Comprehensive data is not available for Under-18 fixtures. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

Everton Under-18s fell to a 3-1 defeat to Blackburn Rovers in the Under-18 Premier League North at Finch Farm on Saturday.

In a sublime showing of individual brilliance, Jacob Beaumont-Clark curled the ball into the far corner with eleven minutes on the clock to open the scoring.

Blackburn drew level on 19 minutes as Lorenze Mullarkey-Matthews latched on to the end of a lofted ball into the danger area.

Zack Stritch then put Rovers into the lead in the 59th minute despite constant pressure seeing the Blues dominate after the break. The attacking midfielder then doubled his tally deep into the second half.

Head Coach Leighton Baines made three changes to the side that defeated Sunderland last time out as George Finney, Joshua Van Schoor and Callum Bates returned to the starting XI.

The deadlock was broken with the first opportunity of the game. Coby Ebere raced forward from inside his own half, weaving in-between the challenge of two retreating defenders. The forward laid it off to Beaumont-Clark, who opened up his body and curled the ball into the top-left corner from 20 yards out.

Five minutes later, Ebere broke forward once more, faced one-on-one with the retreating Rovers skipper. The 18-year-old feinted left and switched the ball on to his favoured right foot, allowing him room to pull the trigger. At the last second, Mathew Litherland got a foot on the ball, turning it behind for a corner.

The scores were level on 19 minutes as Mullarkey-Matthews headed home from inside the six-yard box. Lewis Ball sent in a lofted cross from the right flank that was met by the midfielder, who glanced the ball across the face of goal and into the top corner to equalise.

The visitors threatened in the 38th minute but were denied by George Pickford, who came to the Toffees’ rescue after a tame pass from Odin Samuels-Smith was intercepted in the middle of the park, leaving Rovers with a four-on-two situation 25-yards from goal. Stritch found Junior Nsangou, who set himself and fired at goal, failing to beat the outrushing shot-stopper.

The ‘keeper was in the thick of the action three minutes later as he came off his line excellently to cut out a dangerous low cross before Mullarkey-Matthews could sweep a second home.

The Blues launched an immediate counter and had the ball in the back of the net moments later. Callum Bates wheeled away in celebration, but his jubilation was cut short as the linesman’s flag was raised. Ebere’s powerful strike was palmed away by Solomon Honor, with the ball landing in the path of Bates, who was on hand to tap home. He slotted the ball past the ‘keeper but saw his goal ruled out seconds later.

Baines’ side came firing out of the blocks after the interval and came close to restoring their lead in the 47th minute. Ebere was denied at the near post by Honor after flicking the ball over his head and firing a half-volley at goal. From the resulting corner, Aled Thomas failed to keep a header down at the back post after Harvey Foster whipped in an inch-perfect corner.

Rovers took the lead on 59 minutes against the run of play as Stritch slid in to slot the ball between Pickford and Samuels-Smith. Luca Davis made an excellent block to prevent the first attempt, but the forward got on the scoresheet after a fortunate deflection saw the ball land in his path.

History repeated itself in the 71st minute as Stritch doubled his tally and his side’s advantage. Another fortunate deflection saw the ball land at his feet at the back post, where he cut in and fired through a number of bodies to complete a brace.

In the third minute of additional time, Ebere left his marker in the dust and sprinted at goal. With only the ‘keeper to beat at a tight angle, the striker saw his low-driven effort be turned around the post.

The referee blew his whistle after Max Davies headed the ball off the line to deny Ebere. The forward released a curling effort that seemed destined to ripple the net, but the defender leaped up and headed over the bar.

Next up for the young Blues is a trip to the West Midlands to face Wolves on Saturday 2 March.

By Ross Hughes

Recent scores
Recent scores