Sherif Fires Late Leveller To Extend Under-18s' Unbeaten Run

Everton Under-18s kept their impressive league run intact after battling back from 2-1 down to earn a draw at home to Nottingham Forest Under-18s at Finch Farm.

Leighton Baines’ Blues have not lost in the U18s Premier League (North) since late October, but their six-match unbeaten run was threatened when Forest responded to a Callum Bates opener to go in at half-time ahead.

But Martin Sherif's equaliser four minutes from time turned six games without defeat to seven as the hosts grabbed a point.

Everton Under-18s assistant coach, Kieran Driscoll, said: "I think the result was probably a fair reflection of the game.

“We made a bright opening and started on the front foot. We created plenty of chances and managed to open the scoring.

“After conceding twice, we showed good character and a strong reaction after half-time to come back.

“We were wasteful at times in the second half, despite being the better side. The equaliser was deserved.”

The Toffees went into the match just a point behind their opponents and looked on course to leapfrog Forest when Bates struck the opener on 25 minutes, only for the visitors to level just three minutes later through Joe Gardner.

Forest then edged in front just before the interval, Ben Perry scoring from the penalty spot.

Everton fought back, however, showing great resilience in the second half and deservedly got their goal when forward Sherif netted a late leveller.

“The form is great and it shows how well we’re doing, but we need to focus on developing the players," added Driscoll. "That’s what it’s all about at this stage, but nevertheless, they showed great spirit today, as they have done for the past few months.”

Everton Under-18s’ next match sees them travel to take on Manchester City on Saturday 4 March (11.30am GMT).