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YOUTH: Half-Season Review

23 December 2015

How The Under-18s Have Fared At The Halfway Point

But with the second half of the season to come, and with one scholar already having signed a professional contract, there is plenty for the youth team to look forward to in 2016.

November proved to be a tough month for the Shrews as they made an untimely exit from the FA Youth Cup.

And Ethan Jones grabbed a late winner for Town in their 2-1 win at home to Wrexham in the following game.

A late header from Josh Agbozo in extra time gave Dawes' side a 2-1 win against local rivals AFC Telford United at Greenhous Meadow in the FA Youth Cup First Round Proper.

It took a good Blackpool side to end Town's seven-game unbeaten run, but the young Shrews responded again with straight victories.

The former Wolves youngster had been training with the first-team for several weeks prior to signing his contract, with Manager Micky Mellon delighted at what he had seen.

Second-year striker Ethan Jones was rewarded for his hard work with the youth team as he signed his first professional contract with the Club in the middle of October.

October started with a 2-0 win at Mansfield Town in the second round of the Youth Alliance cup, and a late Callum Roberts goal earned Shrewsbury a hard-fought 1-1 draw in the following league fixture at Wigan Athletic.

Tranmere Rovers were also on the end of another three goals from Shrewsbury and then Dawes' side showed their progression from last season with a 2-0 win at Port Vale - a place where they were beaten last season.

Bury were brushed aside 3-0 in early September and then the young Shrews put four past Fleetwood Town away from home.

A 2-0 victory at a Scunthorpe United in the Youth Alliance Cup first round set Town on their way again and the goals kept on coming.

Defeats at Carlisle and Walsall did follow, but Town's under-18s picked themselves up again and won six out of their next seven - drawing the last one.

The start of this season kicked off with a bang as they dished out a  4-1 drubbing of Morecambe away from home in their opening league fixture of the season with Ethan Jones hitting a ten-minute hat-trick. The following week, three goals were put past Burnley up at Lilleshall.

Additions to last year's squad were made, including the signature of Chris Gallagher who as quickly as he arrived was being called up to represent the Northern Ireland U-17's side.

Midland Youth Cup finalists and Shropshire Senior Cup winners, last season proved to be a very successful one for the young Shrews, topped off with the signing of 'keeper Shaun Rowley and striker Kaiman Anderson on pro contracts. 

Ian Dawes' side have had to deal with matches being postponed in recent weeks, but they are still in with a chance of a high finish in the Football League Youth Alliance - North West league this season.

Shrewsbury Town's youth team have plenty to look forward to heading into 2016.

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