Report: Blues Under-18s 1-1 Arsenal Under-18s
Blues Under-18s drew with Arsenal in the Premier League South on Saturday afternoon.
In a well-contested match at Wast Hills Training Ground, a first-half strike from Kieran Wakefield was, unfortunately, cancelled out by a fine finish from Bradley Ibrahim.
However, the point means that Birmingham City ended their four-game losing streak and it was well deserved, battling to the very end.
The opening stages of the game saw Blues hold the ball well and they got their reward when Wakefield opened the scoring within the first ten minutes. From this, Blues looked to push on and get another goal, creating a couple of good opportunities but Alex Kovacecic did well to keep the scores as they were.
Arsenal began to put on the pressure after the break and Bradley Mayo was forced into some smart saves before the visitors eventually found a way through. Ibrahim created some space and unleashed an unstoppable strike into the top-left corner to level the score.
The Gunners continued to apply the pressure, but Blues were resilient when required to make sure they gained a well-earned point.
Speaking to BCFC.com after the match, Under-18s Lead Coach Martyn Olorenshaw said: “I was very pleased with the first-half. I think we should’ve been a 3-0 up on chances created.
"I think we moved the ball well on a really difficult pitch, and I’m really happy with how we acted out of possession as we did a lot of work on that during the week. I’m very pleased with the performance and the point.”
There are four games left in the league term and Olorenshaw spoke about the expectations for the final stretch of the campaign.
He explained: “We’ve set ourselves a target for the end of the season. We’ve got four games to go and we’ve set a points target and also a couple of other things that we want to get out of the season.”
Blues: Mayo, Ogor (Willis 58), Browne, Manton, Carsley, Patterson, Hamilton, Bellingham, Home, Wakefield, Rushton (Dance 71).
Substitutes not used: Beresford, O'Sullivan.
Booking: Rushton 53, Browne 90.
Goalscorer: Wakefield 8.
Report by Will Furness.