Chester FC Youth advanced into the First Round Proper of the FA Youth Cup this evening with a superb win in the North East.
Goals from Cain Noble, Louis Hayes, Stuart Crilly and Lloyd Marsh-Hughes saw Calum McIntyre’s side advance in some style – playing some scintillating football on their way to the victory.
It was a quiet start to the game in the North East – but one through ball suddenly saw the Blues in front. Noble provided it for Marsh-Hughes, he turned beyond Luca Murphy who tripped the striker.
Captain Noble stepped up and confidently dispatched the penalty from the spot – sending Brad Young the wrong way.
The hosts looked to respond to a slow start, winning a free kick on the edge of the box when George Macready tripped Josh Scott. Brad Fox took the responsibility and got his free kick over the wall but also over the crossbar.
Hartlepool got closer with their next attack just a minute later. Aaron Willoughby provided the cross from the right, and Scott was on hand towards goal; forcing Ben Gale into a fantastic low stop to his right.
Calum McIntyre’s side still posed an attacking threat though; Marsh-Hughes showing pace and power to run beyond Miller – but his shot was over the crossbar from inside the box.
Marsh-Hughes’ movement was wreaking havoc. Moments later he headed inches wide of the far post after a delightful deep cross from Danny Edwards.
At the other end the Pools number nine was also having chances, he was slid through one-on-one with Gale – tried a clever dink – but the keeper made the stop.
However Gale was helpless to stop the leveller on 37 minutes. Daniel Boyle’s shot from 30 yards took a wicked deflection and looped over the keeper into the goal.
But the heads didn’t drop, and McIntyre’s side were back in front four minutes later. Superb work on the left from Marsh-Hughes got him away from Jack Naylor, his left footed deep cross was controlled and finished superbly by Louis Hayes.
After the break Marsh-Hughes was again causing problems, bursting into the area but firing off target once more.
Then on 56 minutes the Blues gave themselves breathing space for the first time in the game. A corner saw a scramble, the ball fell to the back post where Tom Ruffer headed towards goal and the decisive goalbound touch came from Stuart Crilly.
With twenty minutes to go, it was four and Lloyd Marsh-Hughes got the goal he deserved. A strong and powerful turn on the edge of the box was followed by a pinpoint low finish into the bottom corner.
Hartlepool restored some hope with a few minutes remaining as sub Joe Jackson brilliantly headed into the corner of the net following a cross from the right.
Nevertheless, the young Blues saw the game out for a fantastic win and the chance to face Barnsley in the First Round Proper.
Chester FC Youth: Gale, Butterworth, Molyneux, Cottrell (Dean 77), Ruffer (Lynch 90), Macready, Edwards, Noble, Marsh-Hughes, Crilly (Kendrick 82), Hayes.
Subs Not Used: S Jones, Woodburn.
Scorers: Boyle 37, Jackson 87; Noble (pen) 6, Hayes 41, Crilly 56, Marsh-Hughes 69.