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Burnley 0-4 Academy

25 February 2015

Luke Pritchard was the star of the show with four goals as Preston North End blew Lancashire rivals Burnley away in the North West Youth Alliance League.

North End scored two goals in each half at Manchester City’s Carrington training ground in treacherous winds on a difficult afternoon for playing football.

The win was PNE’s second in consecutive matches – cleansheets being kept on both occasions.

The game could have had a different storyline had Burnley forward Khius Metz converted his golden chance early in the game.

The first year scholar collected the ball in the box before forcing a sublime point blank save from Ross Dalton in the Preston goal.

And on the half hour mark Preston were ahead.

A short back pass from defender Vashiko Dixon was latched upon before England schoolboy goalkeeper Connor King felled the advancing attacker.

Pritchard stepped up and the resulting spot kick was coolly placed into the bottom right corner, sending King the wrong way.

The Lilywhites doubled their advantage four minutes later with Pritchard scoring the pick of the goals.

The Preston winger went on a mazy run, creating space to slot into the far corner, via the post.

Burnley’s own winger, Bradley Jackson, came close to reducing the arrears just before half time.

Jackson, who scored a brace at the weekend, attempted an audacious chip from 30 yards, but the effort floated just wide.

After the break Burnley continued to search for a way back into the game.

Midfielder Brandon Wilson fired a ball across goal which was begging for a final touch that would have inevitably cut the deficit.

The Clarets fielded a teenage trialist in the fixture and the winger almost created a goal, cleverly flicking the ball on to Metz who was in on Dalton.

The Irishman attempted to round the Preston stopper, but Dalton was alert enough to claw the ball to safety.

From that, Preston countered and Pritchard grabbed his hat-trick with an arrowed strike from the corner of the box which flew past King.

And with ten minutes remaining the North End No.7 grabbed his and Preston’s fourth of the afternoon, powering through on goal before firing home despite the best attempts from King.

The Clarets almost grabbed themselves a consolation in stoppage time through Jackson who picked the ball up on the wing, cut inside and then produced a shot which looked certain for a goal.

But in keeping with a terrific day for the young Lilywhites, Dalton somehow got a fingertip to it, preserving his side’s cleansheet.



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