U12s York 11-1 Spen Valley

Widdup (3), Jefferson-Hallett (3), Browne (2), Armitage, Rennocks, Hobson.

York hosted Spen Valley in what was their third meeting of the season, the previous two fixtures seeing York win comfortably. In the opening exchanges, York took a while to get themselves going, their passing lacking its usual sharpness and accuracy and, as a result, they found the Spen Valley defence hard to break down. The home side persisted, though, and a chance was carved out for Arthur Jefferson-Hallett, who saw his well-struck shot hit the post. Maintaining the pressure they had begun to create, York took the lead on the 10 minute mark when a Harry Shane cross was finished by Alex Widdup, who slotted home at the far post. 1-0.

Shane then flashed a header just wide from a Ben Armitage corner. Kiam Browne, looking strong and confident in the centre of the pitch, then played in Joseph Meek who saw his low shot well saved by the keeper. Browne then hit a lovely, dipping shot that was turned on to the post by the busy Spen Valley goalkeeper and Harry Fort found space to try a long-range effort, but he saw his shot pushed wide. At this stage, although York were dominating possession, their opponents managed to put together a number of attacks. Defenders Billy Hobson and Shane confidently handled everything that was thrown at them, demonstrating the maturing understanding that they share as a partnership. After 20 minutes, York went 2-0 up. Joseph Meek picked up the ball in midfield, turned smartly and played a nice ball into Browne. As he made his way into the penalty area, Browne was brought down and the referee had no choice but to award a penalty. Browne coolly tucked the spot kick away.

York were soon 3-0 ahead. Following a Meek dribble, Armitage and Browne exchanged slick passes before Armitage drilled the ball home.

3-0 to York at half-time

York came out for the second half determined to show their true quality. They started to zip the ball around a little better, found their wide players more often and pushed on, looking for more goals. Jefferson-Hallett hit a cross-shot from the right wing which found the far corner to put his team 4-0 ahead. James Rennocks quickly made it 5-0, dribbling through the defence to score with a trademark, low finish. Even though they dominated play, York still maintained a good team shape and discipline.

Jack Redman, in the centre of midfield, kept things tidy with his strong tackling, positional play and accurate passing to allow those around him to go forward with confidence. Widdup then scored York’s 6th – Fort played the ball in to the box and Widdup beat his marker before poking the ball home. Shortly afterwards, Jacob Bryant, in the York goal, earnt his appearance money by racing out of his area to bravely head away and then clear the danger as Spen Valley tried to make a breakthrough. Kiam Browne fired in a free-kick that was well saved by the keeper, Jefferson-Hallett controlled the rebound on his chest and hit a left foot volley into the back of the net. 7-0.

York did not let up. A nicely floated corner from Meek found Fort, his shot was turned in by Widdup to make it 8 and then Browne worked an opening and finished smartly for 9-0. Goal number 10 came from Hobson, who put a bullet header into the roof of the net after Meek had crossed from the right. Spen Valley managed to spoil York’s chances of a clean sheet, when their striker forced his way through to give his side a well deserved consolation goal. In the final minute, Jefferson-Hallett completed the scoring with a shot that went in off the crossbar and post. 11-1.

A very pleasing team performance from York. They passed the ball well, in particular in the second half, and showed good quality in all areas of the pitch.

MOM: Kiam Browne – skills, power, goals. A strong, all-round midfield performance.