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U21s 1-3 Tadcaster i2i (Blue)

The U21s entered February looking to put a pretty rotten start to the New Year behind them where they have found themselves on the end of some unfortunate score lines, as they entertained Tadcaster Albion ISA (Blue) U23s at The CNG Stadium.

A raft of injuries to key personnel meant there was a home debut for U17s centre back Lewis Dobson as well as U19s right back Josh Hardcastle, with 16-year-old striker Gabe Hopkinson on the bench.

Early Town pressure was nearly rewarded with an early goal as Harley Lambert looked to be through on goal, but his effort went narrowly wide under pressure from the recovering defender.

The majority of the first half continued in a similar vein with the young Town lads unable to convert a host of chances, dominating possession but ultimately coming up short when it mattered.

A knee injury for centre back Luke Stuart on the stroke of half time put paid to his evening with Adam Gulzar coming on at left back and the reliable Harry Lee taking Stuart’s place in the middle of the back four.

All square at the break with the visitors not troubling the home keeper, who had little to do in the first 45.

Changes at the start of the second half forced Town to shuffle their pack again as striker Harry Boyer and centre back Lewis Dobson we’re unable to continue.

The introduction of young striker Gabe Hopkinson almost paid early dividends as a good chance went narrowly wide again. And as is usually the case, if you don’t take your chances you will eventually get punished.

Right on cue the visitors struck with their first real effort on goal, Town failed to close down the i2i player who hit a speculative shot from distance that evaded the young Town keeper.

A scrappy second soon followed as again Town failed to clear the danger, Haydn Bechthold stabbing home from close range.

As time was running out the home side got a glimmer of joy with Harley Lambert putting in a teasing cross under the crossbar which the visiting keeper could only parry into his own net.

As Town pushed for the equaliser in the final few minutes the visitors got a third and wrapped up the game.

3-1 the final score and another game that got away from Town despite all their hard work and endeavor. that little touch of class and a ruthless edge that has been missing since the Christmas needs to be found as the young lads continue to make life hard for themselves.

A trip to Ilkley next week provides no let up for the youngsters who head there with some big points to prove.

Town: Wade, Hardcastle, Stuart (Gulzar 42), Dobson (Anderson 46), Lee, Lambert, Johnson, Barker, Lawn, Boyer (Hopkinson 46), Humphries.

Subs not used: Richardson.