Northend United 2 Armagh City 0 Saturday 27th October 2018
Northend started at a slow tempo, allowing Armagh to impose their style of play on the game. The Northend defence of Shirley, McAuley Telford and King looked assured at this stage of the game and Ollie Kerr in the Blues nets dealt with anything that came his way. However midway through the half, indecision between centre-back and goalkeeper allowed the Armagh striker to nip in and claim a penalty. Northend had a let-off when the Armagh player placed the ball wide of the post.
Slowly, as the half wore on, Northend grew into the game. Mateusz Las had a good opportunity late in the half, after some good set up play by Jamie Montgomery, that just sailed past the top left. Half time 0-0
Following a reality check at halftime, Northend came out firing on all cylinders, whilst Armagh never allowed Northend any time on the ball in the opening stages of the half. Armagh continued to create a few chances, but Ollie Kerr was equal to them all.
Midway through the half, a Telford corner kick, was headed home by Connor McAuley to give Northend the lead. The game continued to be very tight between two teams afterwards. Montgomery, adapting to the role of full back in the second half, and Dylan King, held their respective lines well. Patrick Ferris managed to find some space as the half went on and spread the play nicely between Pearse Esler and Ciaran Martin. With the last action of the game, Las raced through the Armagh defence but his shot at the keeper was only parried and Patrick Ferris following up, planted the ball into the Armagh net. Full time 2-0
Man of the Match: Ollie Kerr
Panel: O Kerr, R Shirley, D King, C McAuley, O McAuley, J Telford, J Montgomery, P Ferris, M Las, C Martin, P Esler, A Pescaru
Northend United 1 Brookvale 1 Saturday 13th October 2018
The U16s went into this top of the table clash with Brookvale, minus two regulars but those on show certainly gave their all in a great advert for youth football.
The opening 10 minutes were dominated by the top of the table opposition, with the Northend midfield of being forced to work hard to maintain parity on the scoreline. Northend got several great chances later in the half, with Matty Las hitting some great shots from difficult angles. Northend had the better of the play and the majority of shots but couldn't break through in the first half. Half time 0-0
Early in the second half, Brookvale made the breakthrough when they were awarded a penalty, which was dispatched perfectly. Northend piled on the pressure and were rewarded with an almost identical penalty of their own, which Las finished perfectly. The U16s continued to play the better football, with Ciaran Martin turning the opposition full back on several occasions. As the game went on, the Blues started to tire and had to rely on the hard work of the defence, where captain Joel Telford and stand in goalkeeper Conor McAuley were outstanding. Full time 1-1
Panel: C McAuley, R Shirley, D King, J Telford, O McAuley, J Montgomery, P Ferris, M Las, C Martin, C Young, P Esler, A Pescaru
Northend United 3 Banbridge Town 1 Saturday 6th October 2018
Northend started the brighter of the two teams with the midfield of Ferris, Martin and Montgomery all on the front foot and looking dangerous as they took the game to Banbridge. Some early nerves led to Banbridge having a fee chances from corners that the Northend boys defended well. Northend took the lead midway through the half with Ferris picking up the ball in the centre of the park and dribbling past three defenders before scoring from an acute angle.
Northend doubled their lead twenty-five minutes into the half, when Ferris was on hand to steer a Telford corner past the Banbridge keeper. The Blues were coasting at this stage of the game and Las went close with another chance. Northend conceded a goal towards the end of the half as a defender sliced the ball into his own net. Half time 2-1
Into the second half and a rejuvenated Banbridge took the game to Northend with the defence of King, Shirley, McAuley standing firm against the Banbridge attack. Joel Telford and Pearse Esler playing in front of the defence were covering every inch of the pitch as they broke up the Banbridge play. When the Co Down side did get through on goal, they found an inspired Ollie Kerr in the Blues nets. Matty Las had a number of chances to score as Northend began to get back in their rhythm, but with more focus and aggression he could have added to his tally for the season. After a fantastic counter attack involving Andrei Pescaru, Las found himself again through on goal and after the Banbridge keeper make another great save, diminutive striker Cameron Young was on hand to slot the ball into the top corner of the Banbridge net, to give Northend all the points. Full time 3-1
This was a hard-fought win that highlighted the great improvement from the team as a whole this season.
Panel: O Kerr, R Shirley, P Esler, C McAuley, O McAuley, J Telford, J Montgomery, P Ferris, M Las, C Martin, D King, C Young, A Pescaru, B O'Boyle
Northend United 6 Mountjoy Juniors 1 Saturday 29th September 2018
Northend U16s turned in an impressive performance against Omagh based side, Mountjoy Juniors. The Blues were quickly into their stride and opened the scoring on 10 minutes with ace marksman Matty Las outpacing the Mountjoy defence and slipping the ball past their keeper. This was followed 5 minutes later with a second goal from Jamie Montgomery. Matty Las scored the third 20 minutes into the half, planting the ball past the keeper into the top corner.
Northend scored a 4th goal when Las was upended twenty yards out and up stepped Jamie Montgomery to plant the ball past the helpless Mountjoy keeper. Northend scored a fifth goal minutes before half time when Ciaran Martin outpaced his marker, cut inside and lofted the ball over the advancing keeper. Half time 5-0
Into the second half and it was more of the same with Northend on the front foot. Patrick Ferris added another goal after some good work, attacking from midfield. The same player scored his second goal in a carbon copy of the first, five minutes later. However, it wasn't all one-way traffic as Mountjoy attacked the Northend defence, where Joel Telford and Pearse Esler were on top of their game. With Northend's wing backs Dylan King and Ruben Shirley attacking at every opportunity, Northend looked like they could add another goal and Ciaran Martin duly obliged with another top finish, after beating his marker.
Patrick Ferris scored his hat-trick 30 minutes into the half with another great run from midfield. Mountjoy again attacked the Northend goal mouth where Ollie Kerr had to be alert to make a good save but he could do nothing with almost the last kick of the game, when Mountjoy scored a great goal.
Panel: O Kerr, R Shirley, D King, J Telford, O McAuley, P Esler, J Montgomery, P Ferris, M Las, C Martin, C Young, A Pescaru, B O'Boyle
TTBS 3 Northend United 3 Saturday 15th September 2018
Northend U16s went down to an early goal after some dominant play from the TTBS midfield. After several good opportunities, Matty Las deservedly got his name on the score sheet with a calm finish. TTBS scored again with a challenging shot that caught Northend keeper, Ollie Kerr, off guard. Ciaran Martin took the ball down the wing and with some brilliant play, laid it off to Las who equalised again for Northend. Half time 2-2
Northend came out the more determined in the second half. Matty Las found himself in space thanks to the movement of the supporting midfield, and after beating his TTBS defenders, he slotted the ball past the TTBS goalkeeper. Ollie Kerr was quickly pulled in to the action, making a fine save from a venomous TTBS free-kick. TTBS pushed forward to tie the game, and after a brief lapse of concentration in the Northend defence, managed to squeeze the ball in to the Northend goal. Northend threw everything forward, with Pearce Esler and Dylan King making great passes, and Patrick Ferris and Connor McAuley making determined runs against the opposition. Sadly, they couldn't find a winner on the day. Full time 3-3
A result which seems like two points dropped after all the effort and chances the lads had, but that effort and hard work managed to maintain Northend's unbeaten start to the season.
Panel: O Kerr, R Shirley, D King, C McAuley, O McAuley, J Telford, P Esler, J Montgomery, P Ferris, M Las, C Martin, A Pescaru
Lurgan Town 4 Northend United 4 Saturday 8th September 2018
Northend U16s, missing a number of regulars, faced a daunting task against a Lurgan Town side, fresh from the National League last season. With a slow start from the Blues, they quickly went 3-0 down within 30 minutes, failing to get to grips with the towering Lurgan strike-force from a series of corners. Just before half time, Northend's Matty Las broke into the Lurgan box and won a penalty. The same player dusted himself down and calmly dispatched the ball past the Lurgan keeper. Half time: 3-1
Following some words at half-time, Northend came out much stronger in the second half, getting an early second goal. Matty Las' hard work down the wing was rewarded with a great finish from captain Joel Telford. Ollie Kerr, in the Northend goals and Connor McAuley in the heart of the Blues defence were on top of their game and both had an outstanding second half as Lurgan pushed for more goals. Northend almost pulled a further goal back when Dylan King scraped the Lurgan crossbar with a wrasping free-kick.
In a frantic last fifteen minutes in the game, Northend pulled level, when Las outpaced the Lurgan defence and planted the ball past the advancing Lurgan keeper. Northend heads were now up and with Pearse Esler pulling the strings in midfield, a great throughball to Matty Las was controlled superbly and volleyed into the back of the Lurgan net to give Northend the lead for the first time in this game.
However, just as it looked like the Blues would take all the points, a lack of concentration in the Blues defence led to Lurgan equalising with almost the last kick of the game. Full time 4-4
Panel: O Kerr, R Shirley, D King, C McAuley, O McAuley, J Telford, P Esler, M Las, C Martin, B O'Boyle, C Young, A Pescaru
Lurgan Celtic 1 Northend United 2 Saturday 1st September 2018
The U16s started brightly against Lurgan Celtic, having the better of the opening play. Lurgan then got in to the game and scored shortly before half time. A solid show of tackling in the midfield area held the score at 0-1 until half time. Half time 1-0
The second half started at a much faster tempo for the Northend lads, with both Mateusz Las and Ciaran Martin coming close to equalising. Midway through the half, Northend equalled the score with a well-taken goal in the bottom right corner after Lurgan failed to clear a corner. Northend pushed to get the winner and when Mateusz Las was brought down in the box, the same player dusted himself down and slotted the ball into the corner to give the Blues the lead. A strong defensive display from the back four, as well as confident goalkeeping from debutant Ollie Kerr, helped keep the lead until full time, with Northend coming out deserved 2-1 winners in a tough match. Full time 1-2
Panel: O Kerr, R Shirley, D King, C McAuley, O McAuley, J Telford, P Esler, J Montgomery, M Las, C Martin, P Ferris, C Young