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May 2, 2019

Under 18 Boys v West Midlands

The Under 18 Boys travelled to Sandwell Academy to take on the West Midlands having already won theMCF title but hoping to finish their league programme with a 100% record. This was made difficult due to the absence of four first choice players but such is the depth of the squad they were not missed.

The game was an excellent example of Under 18 County football played at a high pace with lots of skill on display. West Midlands took a 1-0 lead when Staffordshire gifted them possession having had several good chances to lead in the game. West Midlands always posed a threat and also created good chances.

The second half was almost totally dominated by Staffordshire but they found themselves two goals down after a horrible mix up in the defence. The setback seemed to spur Staffordshire on and the got a goal back when Owen Turner met a corner and headed in at the back post. The rampant Jack Taylor made a brilliant interception, made 40 yards and then played in Christian Blanchette who bravely went in with boots flying to level the scores. Staffordshire were now in the ascendancy and it was no surprise when they were awarded a penalty which Tom Harley stuck away.

The boys have been excellent all season and but for one poor performance in the national competition would have had a perfect season. Three boys in particular deserve a special mention, Jack Taylor, Max Cuthbert and Alex Minshull have played in the County side for five years and clocking up in excess of fifty appearenceseach. Some of the squad will be available again next season but Jack Finney, Ethan Cartwright, Sam Jarvis, Declan Arber,Sam Jessup and Tom Harley will be leaving. Staffordshire County SFA thank them all for their contribution and wish them well in their future careers.