York Schoolboy’s league campaign suffered a blow at a windy York on Saturday as they fell to a 0-2 defeat to a strong Barnsley side.
This was York’s first league defeat of the season and although their position is still strong in the league with a number of games in hand, the performance in front of goal will need to be more clinical as the Barnsley boys capitalised on their chances.
A strong cross-field wind made the conditions tricky for both teams, but this was an evenly matched contest from start to finish. Bobby Moore and Bodhi Justice dominated the ball for long periods in the York midfield along with Finn Davis, Oliver Ellis and Charlie Calderwood but finding a way through was proving difficult. At the back Theo Clarke and Joe Turbine were imperious and Zac Watson in goals was strong and assured, quickly off his line to smother any Barnsley attacks.
Chances were limited for both sides with both defences proving difficult to beat. The second period saw York begin to take the upper hand and pressure was beginning to mount but the Barnsley keeper was equal to the task as Bodhi Justice had a glorious opportunity to take the lead. The resulting kick out caught the York defence by surprise as the long ball and bounce resulted in confusion at the back for an easy tap in to give Barnsley the lead.
Back came York, piling on the pressure. Chances came and went as the team became more desperate resulting in misplaced passes, heavy touches and near misses……it wasn’t a day for flicks and tricks. Charlie Calderwood thought he’d scored when his turn and shot was deflected onto the post. Ewan Daly was working very hard up front and was getting some joy when pulling wide to whip in several crosses that were not capitalised on. At the other end Barnsley were always dangerous on the counter as York pushed for the equaliser. With minutes remaining the ball broke to Oliver Ellis who looked set to score only for the Barnsley keeper to beat him to the ball, who then released it straight down the other end for a wonderful counter attack and finish to kill the game off.
It was tough introduction to Schoolboys football for debutants Nathan Smith and Elliot McAleese-Shorney but both performed admirably and will benefit massively from the experience.
York continued to push in the final minute but just couldn’t get a goal their efforts deserved. On another day this could’ve been a draw, but Barnsley were worth their win.
All to play for in the league.