Leeds U21’s 1-4 Barnsley U21’s
A Brad Ash hat-trick saw a very young Reds side run out comfortable winners against Yorkshire rivals Leeds United, with Mo Saeed finishing well to get the Reds' other goal.
A very youthful Barnsley side involving players from both the U21’s and the U18’s faced a tough test away at a Leeds side that featured some first team players in their line-up.
The first half was relatively uneventful with both sides exchanging shots from range, but no clear cut chances were created until the Reds took the lead. Just before half time Cameron Scott broke free down the left hand side before firing a cross into the middle where young striker Brad Ash volleyed home to get his first of the day, to make it 1-0 to the Reds.
The lead was doubled just before the hour mark as Mo Saeed, a second half substitute, finished powerfully into the corner of the net following good work from Louis Wardle to set up the opportunity, giving Barnsley a 2-0 lead.
Just a minute later Saeed again was causing problems for the home side’s defence and won a penalty as Leeds ‘keeper Grimes rushed out his goal and fouled the tricky winger. The penalty was coolly dispatched by Ash to get his second of the match, as he sent Grimes the wrong way from the spot to make it 3-0.
The goals did not stop there as Leeds pulled one back through striker Jack McKay who finished a low cross into the box under pressure from the Reds defence, reducing the score to 3-1.
Nick Townsend was then called into action on more than one occasion, making two stunning saves to keep the scores as they were.
A well-deserved fourth goal for the young Reds side was not far away and it came from the penalty spot again. This time Jack Alton charged into the box and was brought down, meaning Brad Ash could step up and complete his hat-trick and give the Reds a deserved 4-1 win.
Professional Development Coach Martin Devaney gave his thoughts on his side’s performance.
“I am really, really pleased.” Said Devaney. “It was a great performance from the lads, out of possession we worked really hard. They all know their roles and responsibilities which they showed today.
“The first goal was a great ball in from Cammy (Cameron Scott) and a top finish from (Brad) Ash, we’d had a couple of chances before that as well.
“We had some good younger lads in the team as well today, I’m delighted for them all. Mo’s (Mo Saeed) finish as well was excellent after good work from Louis Wardle to set him up.
“It’ll take him (Brad Ash) a while to adapt but you can see he’s got great endeavour and he’s a very fit lad, he works really hard and the goals will give him confidence. He’s a big threat in the box.
“There was also a few stunning saves from Nick Townsend, Leeds caused us some problems but Nick showed his qualities. He’s a good shot stopper.
“All around it was a good performance and the standard's very high now.”