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YOUTH: Walsall 2 Town 0

8 May 2017

Town's youngsters end season with defeat

Walsall: Ganley, Little, Fisher, Friel, Kendrick, Leak, Hayles-Docherty, Mason, Cairns, Candlin, O’Sullivan

Substitutes: Dawe, Freemantly, Massamba, Leivesley, Willis,

Town: Jack Atkinson, Ryan Sears, Callum Roberts, George Hughes, Christos Shelis, Brett Taylor, Aaron Gilpin, Chris Gallagher, Charley Higgs, Ryan Barnett, John McAtee

Substitutes: Rhys Davies, Luke Burton, Harri Lovett, Lifumpa Mwandwe, Tyrone Ofori

Shrewsbury Town’s Under-18s ended their season on a disappointing note as they were beaten 2-0 by local rivals Walsall.

Town went into the game with a strong side as John McAtee and Callum Roberts returned to the fold after being involved with the first team last weekend, whilst Ryan Sears, George Hughes and Chris Gallagher were also in the starting-11.

It was Walsall who had the better of the first half and they came close early when Dan O’Sullivan’s cross deflected just wide off Town defender Christos Shelis.

Walsall took the lead on 25 minutes when a swift counter attack allowed Cody Fisher to find space and he cut the ball back for Joseph Cairns to slot home.

Walsall continued to push forward and Town ‘keeper Jack Atkinson presented Walsall with the perfect chance to double their lead, but Tobias Hayles-Docherty failed to make the most of Atkinson’s loose pass.

Town almost equalised before the break when Chris Gallagher’s corner found the head of Callum Roberts, but the left-back couldn’t guide his header on target.

Half-Time: 1-0

The second half was a far quieter affair as both sides scrapped to gain control of the ball in midfield. Walsall had a couple of long range efforts which flew wide of the post, while Town had penalty appeals waved away.

The next goal seemed key and if Town could have scored it they would certainly have been favourites to go on and win, but Walsall managed to get their second with 15 minutes remaining when Brett Taylor’s back pass was cut out by Mitchel Candin who coolly rounded Atkinson before passing the ball into the back of the net.

Town substitute Tyrone Ofori could have done with a similarly cool head when one-on-one with Walsall goalkeeper Brandon Ganley late on, but Ofori was put off by the Walsall number one and his shot hit the side netting.

Town were presented with the perfect chance to score a late consolation when Walsall handled in the box. But, John McAtee was denied from 12 yards on a disappointing final day of the season.

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