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Academy 0-1 Wrexham

7 October 2013

Preston's U18s were unfortunate to be knocked out of the Youth Alliance Cup after being beaten 1-0 by Wrexham at Victory Park.

Matthew Hudson started in net for the Lilywhites, James Boyd and Harry Hagon also came into the starting XI.

Preston started the match the better of the two sides with attacking threat.

Corners were coming thick and fast for the home side and Preston were unlucky not to go ahead, after Hagon did well only for John Hodgin in the Wrexham goal to save well.

While Preston had the better of the early stages, Wrexham forwards Richard Harvey Davis and Danny Reynolds were tricky customers and impressed for the visitors. 

For the home side, Tyler Forbes was impressive throughout the match down the left side, the winger brimming with confidence taking on the full backs and creating good openings at every given opportunity.

The best chance of the first half for Preston came through full back George Gray who went on a great run unchallenged, his shot just over the bar.

Gray continued to create opportunities for the forward line with a fantastic cross into the box. 

Sam Livesey headed on to keep the chance alive but the goalkeeper was alert.

From the resulting corner, Forbes fired in a low cross which the Wrexham defence cleared.

Wrexham nearly put the ball in the back of their own net after the ball came off one of the defenders but Hodgin was quick back on to his line to stop the ball going in. 

The visitors went ahead on 33 minutes after good play by Reynolds saw him slot the ball past Matthew Hudson.

Preston pushed hard for the equaliser through yet more good play by Forbes.

But despite periods of bright play, the Lilywhites trailed at the interval.

As the second half commenced, it was a fast scrappy start to the proceedings.

Preston pushed hard for the equaliser as Livesey troubled the goalkeeper and Nick Anderton put in a great ball which was also saved.

Anderton put in a great ball again – with both full backs getting involved in the attacking play but the chances weren't falling for Preston. 

Joe Whittington and Jack Ryan came on for Livesey and Lyle Magolis mid-way through the second half, Whittington, threatening from the moment he came on with Preston pushing for an equaliser.

Wrexham nearly extended their lead however but Hudson pulled off a great save to keep Preston in the match late on.

Ryan nearly levelled up the score for the Lilywhites but his effort went agonisingly just past the goal and that was to be that.

Nick Harrison said post-match: “The performance was disappointing, it was a cup game and we needed to win it to get through to the next round and we haven't achieved that.

“It is about winning games but more importantly we've said to them in the changing rooms it is about performances and that's what we're most disappointed about today.”

Harrison said about Brownhill's inclusion in the first team squad which travelled to Peterborough: “It's a great experience for him. We don't know if he'll be involved but it's fantastic and that's what it's all about.

“It'll be a great experience for him, just to be in and around the first team environment, and he deserves it. 

“The message to the other boys is if they perform well and push themselves they might get the opportunities as well.”

Tyler Forbes said on his own performance: “I thought I did well, good to be back in the team and I put some good crosses in but the sad thing is we lost the game.

“We're frustrated and no one wants to lose in the first round of the cup, so we're just going to move on to Monday now and hopefully win that.

“We see it as a learning curve we need to improve on the mistakes we made and hopefully get a win Monday and show what the team is made of.”

Hudson, Gray, Anderton, Scott ©, Sampson, Hagon, Livesey (Whittington), Holmes (Wicks), Magolis (Ryan), Boyd, Forbes.

Subs not used: Dalton, Roscoe.

Hodgin, Simpson, Simpson, Smith, Duran, White, Cartwright, Hummunds, Weaver, Harvey Davis, Reynolds, Smith

Subs: Davies, Whitlock, Phillips, McCoil, Newton.

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