Under-18s Report: Walsall 1-2 Bolton Wanderers

Goals from Lamine Toure and Kian Le Fondre saw the young Wanderers pick up a great victory at league leaders Walsall last weekend.

The Saddlers had gone into the game on the back of four successive victories, while Wanderers were searching for their first win.

Wanderers started the better of the two sides with Mitchell Henry proving to be a nuisance down the Walsall left hand side.

The visitors should have taken the lead through Henry who managed to run in behind the defence, but their Saddlers’ keeper made a fine save.

Wanderers continued to dominate the opening 45 minutes creating numerous opportunities to score. 

They eventually took the lead through Toure’s back post header to give them a deserved advantage going into the break.

The visitors started the second half brightly, creating great opportunities to extend their lead but were wasteful in front of goal.

Toure, who had defended brilliantly throughout, caught a Walsall attacker inside the penalty box leaving the referee with no option but to point to the spot, and the kick was duly converted.

Wanderers continued to create chances when substitute Le Fondre broke down Walsall’s left with only the goal keeper to beat, making the keeper pull off a great save.

It didn’t take long for the Wanderers to have the ball in Walsall’s net again, only for the referee to rule it out for off side.

Wanderers eventually got the winning goal with Finlay Lockett putting in a deep cross from Walsall’s right. Le Fondre was in the right place to slot home the winning goal to give Wanderers a thoroughly deserved victory.

Academy Manager Mark Litherland said: “It’s been frustrating time for the coaching staff and players. We have dominated all the games we have played so far, but not picked up the results.

“Today was different the lads played brilliantly in the first half. However, we need to be more clinical in the final third.

“In the first half the score should have been 5-0. We created ten fantastic opportunities to score throughout the game, missing three 1 v 1s. The players understand the importance of being more clinical in front of goal.  

“I’m pleased with how the players are developing, they understand their roles and responsibilities.”


Bolton Wanderers U18s:

Hutchinson, Tweedley (C), Conway (Brown 75), Colvin, Toure, Pettifer, Fitzmartin, Assarsson (Whalley 80), Amoateng (Le Fondre 70), Lockett, Henry (Thompson 85).

Sub Not Used: Litherland

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