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Match Reports


21 May 2023

Match Reports


21 May 2023

Our history-making U18s were crowned Professional Development League champions after beating Charlton Athletic on penalties in the play-off final at Oakwell on Saturday afternoon.

Theo Chapman’s first half spot-kick, followed by a dramatic Matty Doyle header in the latter stages of extra-time took the tie a shootout, where a heroic Rogan Ravenhill save won the game for our record-breaking young Reds.

It was the perfect end to an incredible campaign for Nicky Eaden’s side, who claimed the north title back in April and exorcised demons from last season when they were beaten by the Addicks at the semi-final stage.

In a cagey opening, the first chance of the game fell to Barnsley after quarter of an hour as Vimal Yoganathan cut the ball back to Fabio Jalo, who fired just wide of the target as our U18s began to find their feet.

Minutes later, the Charlton box was in trouble again as the ball fell to Chapman at the back post. A quick lay off to Josh McKay ended with a shot turned cross that Josiah Dyer could only divert over the bar with his head.

The Reds continued with their incessant pressure as they forced a goalkeeping error from Ahmed Kone. Jalo managed to pick up the loose ball in the box and set his sights on curling into the far post, however, the Charlton number one somehow managed to push his attempt to safety.

The visitors survived another scare shortly after when Yoganathan played a beautiful pass through for Hayden Pickard, who surged forward and found Dyer in the box. He fed his strike partner, Jalo, but our Portuguese magnifico could only strike narrowly wide of the far post.

By the half hour mark our U18s could have been five goals up. Another chance went begging as Pickard swung a looping cross into a packed box, but Jalo’s header was comfortably gathered by Kone.

Our youngsters finally made the breakthrough six minutes before half-time after being awarded a penalty for hand ball against Oliver Hobden. Up stepped Chapman to calmly dispatch into the bottom right corner to give his side a richly deserved lead.

Theo Chapman celebrates after netting his penalty against Charlton Athletic

Barnsley almost grabbed an instant second through Pickard, who teed up a left footed volley to the far corner that was brilliantly clawed away by Kone before Dyer poked home the rebound. However, the linesman waved his flag to signal offside.

HALF TIME: Barnsley 1-0 Charlton Athletic

Charlton came flying out of the blocks after the restart and found the leveller within five minutes as a defence splitting ball made its way to Daniel Kanu, who skipped around Ravenhill and crossed for Henry Rylah to head into an empty net.

Our U18s didn’t let the early goal affect their game as they continued to look to punish the Charlton backline. Jalo broke with speed into the visitors’ box midway through the half before easily beating a defender but was once again denied by Kone.

With five minutes remaining, the young Reds almost found the winner as Emmaisa Nzondo raced through on goal. The keeper was quick to clear the chance but only as far as Jalo, whose rifling effort from the edge of the box was deflected narrowly wide.

Right at the death, Jonathan Bland produced a magnificent goalline clearance to force extra-time, as a powerful strike from close range threatened to nestle into the bottom corner, but our captain was on hand to monumentally get behind the shot and keep the scores level.

FULL-TIME (90 MINUTES): Barnsley 1-1 Charlton Athletic

The visitors pulled ahead towards the end of the first period of extra-time. After a lengthy delay, a deep free-kick made its way into the box and was headed home by Hobden, a gut punch for the young Reds.

Our U18s weren’t down and out, though, as freshly introduced Doyle rose highest to meet a Pickard corner before powerfully heading into the back of the net. Oakwell erupted as the defender wheeled away in celebration and was mobbed by his teammates.

Our U18s celebrate Matty Doyle's dramatic late equaliser

It forced a climactic penalty shootout, with all of our U18s’ hard work over the course of a superb campaign coming down to who could hold their nerve from 12-yards.

FULL-TIME (EXTRA-TIME): Barnsley 2-2 Charlton Athletic

In front of the Norman Rimmington Stand, both sides successfully converted five spot-kicks, with Pickard, Rafael Monteiro, Jalo, Leo Farrell and Nzondo all converting for Barnsley, while Karoy Anderson, Kanu, Harvey Kedwell, Toby Bower and Patrick Casey responded in kind for the visitors.

Our centre-back Trialist stepped up and slammed his effort home before Ravenhill plunged to his right to save Charlton’s sixth attempt and spark scenes of pure jubilation as the young Reds sealed a first ever national title.

FULL TIME: Barnsley 2-2 Charlton Athletic (Barnsley win 6-5 on penalties)


REDS XI: Ravenhill (GK), McKay, Pickard, Trialist, Bland (C), Murchison, Yoganathan, Makiessi, Dyer, Chapman, Jalo.

Subs: Carter-Rogers (GK), Nzondo, Monteiro, Farrell, Doyle.

Rogan Ravenhill saves the crucial penalty to win the title

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