North End’s youngster cruised into the second round of the FA Youth Cup with a crushing 6-1 victory in the first round over Mansfield Town.
The young Lilywhites were four up by half-time with Sam Livesey, Joe Whittington and a brace from Jack Ryan brushing the Stags aside with flowing, fluid football in front of a good crowd at Deepdale.
Whittington scored a second straight after the interval before Stags skipper Jack Thomas scored from the spot with their first shot of the game on 52 minutes. Skipper Tyler Forbes made it six in the last ten minutes to add a scoreline to reflect their dominance.
The first half was at times played in driving rain, but all that did was ensure the pitch stayed slick, suiting North End fast-paced passing football, with the ball worked quickly out to the flanks, where the wingers showed their abilities time and time again.
It was 1-0 after only eight minutes. A long ball from Nick Anderton was run onto by Sam Livesey, it looked like he couldn’t control first time, but he managed to gather the ball. The Mansfield defender almost brought him down, which would have surely resulted in a penalty and red card, but Livesey slid the ball with the outside of his right boot into bottom right hand corner.
It was one-way traffic throughout the first 45 minutes. Harry Waldran in the visitors goal came out to gamble in a 50/50 versus Tyler Forbes on 11 minutes, however, the North End forward beat him to it and almost put it past him, but keeper managed to smother.
Nick Harrison and Andy Fensome on the bench switched the wing men of Livesey and Whittington and the former cut in from the left hand side, beat the full back, but fired just over the right hand corner of post and bar.
Bradley Roscoe saw a header from Tyler Forbes’ corner go just over and Sean Holmes had a great opportunity to score, scuffing an effort wide after great play and ball in from George Gray on the right.
It was as one-sided as the report suggests with Ross Dalton a mere spectator at the other end and North End made it two on 40 minutes. Great play by George Gray down the right beat a man then split the full back and centre half with a pass, Joe Whittington looked up and fired from tight angle into top left hand corner with the defence expecting the cross.
It was three just two minutes later as Jack Ryan fired low and hard into the bottom right hand corner. Nick Anderton had broken through and was cynically upended, but excellent refereeing by match official Aaron Jackson allowed play to go on and Jack Ryan was in and scored with an acute finish.
And the front man made it four in first half injury time with a brilliant hard finish into top right hand corner after long ball through, collecting and finished with aplomb.
There was even time for Waldran to make a brilliant save to deny Whittington from making it five after Livesey marauded down the right yet again.
The second half didn’t change much and within two minutes of the restart Joe Whittington made it five. Tyler Forbes closed down Charlie Brownlie and Whittington raced onto the loose ball and fired hard and low into the bottom left hand corner of the Town End goal.
The visitors got some rest-bite as Bradley Roscoe was adjudged to have fouled Kevin Hemagou giving the Stags a penalty on 52 minutes. Skipper Jack Thomas fired low into the bottom right hand corner to pull one back with their first shot of the game.
George Gray from right back fired a shot just narrowly wide of the left hand post after a clever step inside on his full back just before the hour mark.
In the wet conditions on the big Deepdale surface it was unsurprising that the pace slowed after 60 minutes had passed. The Stags had dropped very deep to try and nullify North End, with the young PNE side having to playing a more patient probing game, keeping the ball and waiting for space.
Joe Whittington could and perhaps should have had his hat-trick from Tyler Forbes’ corner before North End made their first change, Lyle Magolis replacing Sam Livesey.
The sub was inches away from a sixth from Jordan Scott’s quality set piece on the left flank with 15 minutes left as North End’s dominance continued.
It was six with nine minutes left; Tyler Forbes got a goal his play deserved, the only one to react when Jack Ryan burst through the middle and forced Waldran to make a save; but the keeper could only push it out and PNE's No.10 fired back into the bottom left hand corner and North End left it at that on a good night at Deepdale.
: Dalton, Gray, Anderton, Scott, Sampson, Roscoe, Livesey (Magolis, 66), Holmes (Wicks, 83), Ryan, Forbes, Whittington (Forbes, 81). Subs not used: Hudson, Hagon.PNE line-up
: Waldram, Walker, Green, Simpson (Fitzpatrick, 11), Brownlie, Koczalski (Asare, 46), Fletcher, Thomas, Hemagou, Spencer, Lamb (Damar-Thompson, 46). Subs not used: Fell, Roome.Mansfield Town line-up
: Mr A JacksonReferee