NORTHEND UNITED YOUTH FC
Ballymena, N. Ireland
Est 2003
Northend United 6 Bloomfield 2   Friday 25th February 2022

Northend played their second league match in three days on Friday night against Bloomfield at the impressive Greenisland 3G facility. On a perfect night for football Northend were able to name a full 16-man squad for the first time this season and the full squad were utilised during what turned out to be a very entertaining match for the spectators.
Right from the off both sides played quick passing football and both defences had to be at their best to keep the match scoreless. Gradually the Northend midfield trio of McDermott, Connon and OíHara began to win control of the game and front-man Pirie spurned three good chances which on another night would have found the back of the net. At the other end Northendís defence had to be on their toes as the Bloomfield forwards stretched them at every opportunity with Matthew Deeney showing the speed and skill which sees him moving to Linfield this summer. However, goalie Tom Hasson was rarely troubled during the first half as the defensive line held firm. Eventually the stalemate was broken right on the stroke of half-time when a great ball from Connor OíHara released Pirie just inside the box and he fired home to give the blues a crucial half-time lead. Half time 1-0

Into the second half and Bloomfield came out re-invigorated by the half-time team-talk. However, it was Northend who should have gone further ahead when McDermott was put though one-on-one with the Bloomfield keeper only to see his effort blocked. After ten minutes a Deeney run and cross down the left wing was slid home at the back post by midfielder Jake Wilson for the equaliser and then Deeney himself put Bloomfield ahead when he cut inside from his customary left sided position to send in an unstoppable effort form 25 yards past a helpless Hasson in the Northend goal. Shortly after, another Bloomfield effort was cleared off the Northend goal-line by Eryk Hejno and at this point it looked like being one of those nights when Northend would be left to rue those earlier missed chances. However, the introduction of Carter Reid from the bench changed the game as his presence up-front alongside Pirie gave Bloomfieldís defence more to deal with and within 5 minutes of his introduction, he latched onto a McDermott though ball to fire home the equaliser. This was followed shortly after by a devastating 10-minute spell from Northend where they scored four more goals. Firstly, Pirie charged down an attempted clearance by the Bloomfield keeper and was first to the rebound to slide home. Then captain Lewis Devlin latched onto a loose ball in the box to put the Blues further ahead. Pirieís hat-trick arrived courtesy of a shot come cross from left back Eryk Hejno which Pirie reacted to first and guided past the helpless Bloomfield keeper. The final goal of the night duly arrived on the hour mark when Pirie hammered home the rebound following a blocked Corcoran effort.

On the night this was a great result from a team that for most of this season have risen to any challenge presented to them. At 2-1 it looked like it was not to be their night but the heads never dropped and when they saw the opportunity to press home the advantage against a tiring opposition, they were relentless. Particular mention must go to the central defensive partnership of Devlin and Mark, while McDermott put in one of his best displays in a Northend shirt. Elsewhere Corcoran and Lyness gave a great display of wing play and Pirie never gave up all night especially early in the game when chances were missed. Full time 6-2

Men of the Match:  Lewis Devlin and Sean McDermott
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Northend United 4 Ballysillan Swifts 1 Monday 21st February 2022

Northend 06ís returned to South Belfast Youth League action this week having not played for nearly three weeks following their Cup Final win. The first of two league matches in three days was played against Ballysillan Swifts at Crumlin 3G on a freezing cold Wednesday night. The Belfast side were well up for this match and took the game to Northend in the early stages as the young blues struggled to get going after their recent lay-off. However, it was Northend who made the breakthrough ten minutes into the game when captain Lewis Devlin latched onto a loose ball 30 yards out and hit an unstoppable effort into the Ballysillan goal. This goal lifted his team-mates and Northend started to press the Ballysillan defence at every opportunity. Five minutes after the opener centre-forward Euan Pirie made the most of hesitancy in the Ballysillan defence and struck home from just outside the box to put the young blues two up. The Belfast boys didnít lie down and immediately from the re-start went up the park and scored to remind Northend they were in for a tough night. Half Time 2-1

After the break Northend struggled to regain control of the match and the coaching team changed the formation introducing subs Carter Reid and Conlan Lyness with Reid pushed up to support lone front man Pirie and Lyness put out wide on the right wing. This change paid dividends almost immediately when Reid sent Pirie though to hold off a Ballysillan defender and fire Northend further ahead. Not long after Lyness made a great run down the right wing before sending over a delightful cross for Pirie to head home for his hat-trick.
Although the scoreline was impressive, this result was built on the back of another solid defensive performance with Mark and Devlin particularly impressive. Up front Euan Pirie put in another tireless display with his general hold up play being just as important as the goals scored. Elsewhere Kaylem Corcoran was another who put in a hard shift down the left side and never stopped running all night. Full time 4-1

Man of the Match: Euan Pirie

Panel: T Hasson, C Hendron, L Devlin, J Mark, E Hejno, C OíHara, S McDermott, H Connon, C McAuley, K Corcoran, E Pirie, C Lyness, C Reid, L Heggarty 
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Northend United 2 Holywood Youth 2  Northend win 5-3 on pens  Supp Cup Final  Friday 4th February 2022

A big week for Northendís U16s culminated in them playing in the South Belfast Youth League Division 1 Supplementary League Cup Final against top Belfast side Holywood Youth at The Harland & Wolff Blanchflower Stadium.
Playing their third match in the space of a week the young blues looked weary in the early stages with the defence and keeper Tom Hasson having to be at their best to keep the score line level. However as the first half wore on the midfield and attack were imposing themselves more on the game and eventually a great though-ball from Connor OíHara released Kaylem Corcoran in the box and he slid the ball past the advancing keeper into the net for an all-important opener. Half-time 1-0

After the break Holywood came out firing on all cylinders and within 5 minutes of the re-start were 2-1 up. The equaliser came from a great run and cross from the Holywood left winger which set up a tap-in at the far post. This was followed by a penalty which was confidently dispatched past keeper Tom Hasson. Hasson was having an outstanding night and had two excellent stops after this to keep Northend in the game. However, this Northend team never give up and they battled back into the game. With 10 minutes left the equaliser came following a strong run down the right wing from striker Euan Pirie and his pass inside found Conlan Lyness in the box to shoot home and send the watching Northend fans wild with delight. Full time 2-2

The match went straight to penalties with Northend going first. The first four were converted by Pirie, Devlin, McDermott and Corcoran while Holywood missed their third effort leaving Harry Connon to cooly dispatch the winner and give the boys, coaching staff and supporters a night they will remember for a very long time. Penalties: 5-3 pens

Man of the Match: Tom Hasson

Panel: T Hasson, C Lyness, L Devlin, S McDermott, L Heggarty, C Hendron, H Connon, C McAuley, E Pirie, D Patterson, C OíHara, K Gabrychowska, K Corcoran, J Mark
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Northend United 2 Aquinas 1  Supp Cup Semi-Final    Mon 31st January 2022

Northend travelled to Crumlin last Monday night to play Belfast side Aquinas in the semi-final of the South Belfast Youth League Division 1 Supplementary League Cup.
After a disappointing performance the previous Friday night the blues returned to form and put in an outstanding performance against their highly rated opposition. They dominated the first half and should have gone into the break at least one goal ahead having one effort cleared off the line and going close on several other occasions. At the other end the backline of Patterson, Devlin, Hendron and Hejno were outstanding and didnít give Aquinas any opportunities to test Hasson in goal. Half-time 0-0

After the break Northend continued to have the better of the game and eventually went ahead 9 minutes into the second half with a great strike from right back Dan Patterson from all of 25 yards out. Northend went further ahead when front man Gabrychowska was felled in the box and Euan Pirie saw his spot-kick saved by the Aquinas keeper before slotting home the rebound. Aquinas rallied in the final 10 minutes and pushed forward in an attempt to get back in the game. Eventually their pressure told and they won a penalty which was tucked away past Hasson to give the Northend coaching staff and supporters a nail-biting final 5 minutes. However, the young blues were rarely troubled after the penalty and saw out the final minutes to set up a final date with Holywood Youth later in the week. Full time 2-1

Man of the Match: Team Award

Panel: T Hasson, C Lyness, L Devlin, E Hejno, S McDermott, C Hendron, H Connon, C McAuley, E Pirie, D Patterson, C OíHara, K Gabrychowska
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Wellington Rec 3 Northend United 2   Friday 28th January 2022

Another Friday night game this week at The Cliff in Larne on what has been an unhappy hunting ground of late at for Northendís 2006ís. Needing a win to maintain their position at the top of the SBYL Division One the young blues put in another under-par performance against a much-improved Wellie Rec. On a night where the wind played a big part on the quality of football on display Northend failed to settle into any rhythm and their trademark passing game was rarely on show. With the wind at their back in the first half Northend took an early lead when Euan Pirie latched onto a loose ball in the box to chip the advancing Wellie Rec keeper. This should have settled the Northend boys but they failed to press home their advantage and allowed Wellie Rec back into the game and they equalised on the quarter hour mark. Try as they might Northend could not create any real scoring opportunities and the Wellie Rec keeper was rarely troubled although he did make a remarkable double save from Northend captain Lewis Devlin just before half-time. Half time 1-1

After the half-time break Wellie Rec were full of running and Northend really had no answer to the energy shown by their opponents. Ten minutes into the second half Wellie Rec took the lead through a dubious penalty decision Ė not the first time this season this Northend team have had to deal with such decisions in Larne. Wellie Rec went further ahead when an unstoppable effort was hit from all of 35 yards out with the wind behind it into the top corner of the Northend goal. After this Northend tried to battle back and Euan Pirie got on the scoresheet again when he drilled home from the edge of the box with a minute to go. However, this was all too little too late on a night to be forgotten for a team that for the past month has struggled to find any consistency. Full time 3-2

Man of the Match: Euan Pirie

Panel: T Hasson, C Lyness, L Devlin, E Hejno, L Heggarty, C OíHara, C Hendron, S McDermott, H Connon, C McAuley, E Pirie, C Lyness, K Gabrycowska 
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Larne Youth 2 Northend United 2 Friday 21st January 2022

The U16s continued their South Belfast Youth League campaign on Friday evening away to Larne Youth at The Cliff. The boys returned to form after a lacklustre performance the previous Saturday and were pressurising the Larne backline right from the start. The midfield trio of Connon, McDermott and Conall McAuley were continually prompting wide men Corcoran and OíHara and centre-forward Euan Pirie wasnít giving the Larne defence a minuteís peace. Eventually a great through ball from Connon put Pirie through in the box and he shot home to put Northend ahead after 10 minutes. Northend continued to press and should have gone further ahead when Pirie had another effort saved by the Larne keeper.
Against the run of play Larne equalised direct from a free kick which was one of several contentious decisions given against Northend on the night.
Northend didnít let this set-back deter them and within 5 minutes a great passing move involving Patterson, McAuley and Connon released Pirie in the box again and he drilled an unstoppable effort past the helpless Larne keeper from a tight angle to put Northend ahead again. Half time 1-2

After the break Northend seemed to lose their impetus and allowed Larne to come more into the game. However good defending from Northend, in particular right back Dan Patterson, kept Larne at bay and indeed Northend could have gone further ahead when Corcoranís effort from the edge of the box just crept by the post.
Just as it looked like Northend would see the game out Larne got a penalty for handball in the final minute of the match which was duly tucked away.
On the night a good performance, especially in the first half where Northend were left to rue one or two missed chances which would have put them out of sight by half-time, and a few refereeing decisions which benefitted the home team and left everyone at Northend frustrated by a lack of consistency. Full time 2-2

Men of the Match: Dan Patterson, Conall McAuley

Panel: T Hasson, D Patterson, L Devlin, E Hejno, L Heggarty, C OíHara, S McDermott, H Connon K Corcoran, C McAuley, E Pirie, C Lyness, K Gabrychowska, C Reid   
.............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................   Northend United 1 Ballykeel Youth 0   Saturday 15th January 2022

Northend U-16ís South Belfast Youth League campaign continued this week with a local derby against fellow Ballymena side Ballykeel Youth.
It was a strangely subdued performance from the Northend youngsters who were clearly not as motivated for the occasion as their local rivals. Ballykeel dominated the early stages and Northend could not get a foothold in midfield. However, Northend centre-half Lewis Devlin was in dominant form at the back and marshalled his defence well to keep Ballykeel at bay. Northend went ahead midway through the first -half when Kaylem Corcoran scored direct from a free kick from 20 yards out. Half-time 1-0

Ballykeel continued to have the upper hand after the break but time and again their attacks were broken up by some superb defending from Northendís centre-back pairing of Lewis Devlin and Eryk Hejno. Northend did break through the Ballykeel defence on a couple of occasions but could not find a way past the Ballykeel keeper. In the end the young blues had to be thankful to their own keeper Tom Hasson who made two match-winning saves near the end of the game Ė the second from point-blank when Ballykeel were through and looked certain to equalise. So, the unbeaten run continued in the League but Northend rode their luck at times to come out on top on a day when too many players were out of sorts. Full time 1-0

Man of the Match: Lewis Devlin

Panel: T Hasson, C Lyness, L Devlin, E Hejno, K Corcoran, S McDermott,  C Hendron, L Heggarty, C McAuley, E Pirie, D Patterson, C OíHara, C Reid, K Gabrychowska
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Northend United 2 St Marys 1   Friday 7th January 2022

Northend United U-16ís travelled to Crumlin on Friday night to play their first match of the New Year against St Maryís in the South Belfast Youth League.
The Glengormley side settled first and went ahead after only 5 minutes following a well worked move which was finished off by their centre-forward Tom Dunlop. This was the wake-up call Northend required, and they began to dominate the ball with Harry Connon and Sean McDermott winning plenty challenges in midfield and centre-forward Euan Pirie giving the St Maryís defenders a torrid time. All this possession could not be converted into goals and several chances were passed up before the half-time break. Half-time 0-1

Northend coach John Devlin changed the teamís formation at half time going with a front three of Carter Reid, Euan Pirie and Kaylem Corcoran. Within 5 minutes of the restart this paid dividends. Firstly Euan Pirie beat 2 defenders in the box before squaring for Carter Reid to score at the back post. Four minutes later Pirie again provided the assist for the ever eager Reid to score his second and what turned out to be the winning goal. Northend continued to dominate the rest of the game but couldnít add to their tally.
All in all this was another great team performance with every one of the squad working hard to get the win on an extremely cold night against a St Maryís side who were obviously up for the challenge.  Full time 2-1

Man of the Match: Euan Pirie

Panel: T Hasson, L Devlin, E Hejno, K Corcoran, S McDermott, H Connon, L Heggarty, C McAuley, E Pirie, C OíHara, C Reid, K Gabrychowska
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