Chester FC Youth progressed to the Quarter Finals of the National League Under 19 Alliance Cup with a one-nil victory over a dogged Gateshead side tonight in front of over 1,000 fans.
The only goal of the game came from Cain Noble, who converted into an open goal after Rhain Hellawell beat ‘Heed ‘keeper Lumsden to a through ball.
The young Blues forced a couple of quick corners with just five minutes on the cross but Alex Downes’ efforts were blocked both times.
It wasn’t long before the home side had the lead though. Rhain Hellawell, playing on the right side of midfield, beat ‘Heed goalkeeper Ryan Lumsden to a through ball, and squared perfectly for Cain Noble to convert into an open goal.
The visitors looked capable of creating chances of their own though and Lewis McGeogh forced Ben Gale’s first save of the evening when latching onto a ball in behind, though he couldn’t get the ball high enough to lob over Gale.
Lloyd Marsh-Hughes almost doubled the Blues advantage as he latched onto a backpass but Lumsden was on hand to save well.
The Young Blues forced another chance as a free kick was knocked down to Rhain Hellawell, but his effort was off-target as the ‘Heed defence tried to close him down.
Gateshead struggled to create chances as the half went on and Blues forward Nathan Brown almost doubled their advantage with a twenty-five yard effort, but Lumsden was equal to it.
Substitute Brandon Dickinson was next to create a chance, but his lob was off target.
The second half began with the Blues in the ascendancy, with Alex Downes striking too close to Lumsden after good work from Wallis to win the ball back.
The visitors began to press as the hour mark approached and almost found an equaliser through Dan Ord, but his effort was just off target.
Nathan Brown was almost able to feed in Dickinson but for a last ditch interception, before Brown got the ball back and was denied by Lumsden from twenty-five yards.
Gateshead had a glorious chance to equalise inside the final five minutes, Lewis McGeoch did well to beat the Blues centre halves only to be superbly denied by Ben Gale.
In the end that save proved crucial as the young Blues held on to secure a one-nil victory to progress to the Quarter Final of the National League under 19 Alliance Cup.
Chester: Gale, Thomson, Hardman, Wallis, Dobson (c), Downes, Hellawell, Noble, Marsh-Hughes (Dickinson 33), Brown (Murray 76), Cottrell (Crilly 60).
Subs: Jones, Hayes.
Gateshead: Lumsden, Outerside, Stephenson, Ord, Bennett (c), Garrity, Brearton (Siddick 56), Robertson, McGeoch, Carrick (Chapman 81), Cranston.
Subs: Logan, Valurna.
Goal Scorers: Chester: Noble (10).