Preston North End youth team forward Harry Garstang felt a lack of quality in attacking areas was the difference as the U18s fell to a 3-1 home defeat against Burnley on Saturday.
After trailing at half-time, with the visitors scoring twice in the final 15 minutes of the first-half following Tom Stead’s early header, the Lilywhites were unable to make their possession count in the second-half of the match.
“We just needed the quality in the final third,” said the 17-year-old. “Crosses were coming in, but we weren’t getting into the box as much and the quality just wasn’t there.
“We knew it was going to be a tough game because Burnley are fighting to win the league, and we knew that they were going to start strongly. But after the first ten minutes when we weren’t at our best, we got into the game and started playing well for about 20 minutes.
“After our goal, we just weren’t competing as well as we were before the goal. We weren’t competing as much, or winning as many second balls in midfield and up the pitch.”
With only one game remaining this term, Garstang sits second top of the scoring charts in the youth team squad and top with goals from open play, having netted eight times this season.
He has enjoyed his first season as a scholar and is ready to join up with the new scholars, who signed earlier this week, most of whom he knows well from playing in the academy’s lower age groups since he was just eight-years-old.
“It’s been good. It’s been challenging as well but it’s got better and better as it’s gone on. It’s easier to come in and cope with it now.
“I just to try to play my game and score as many goals as I can to help the team to get the wins.
“We’ve played with them [the new scholars] coming through the age groups for years, so we know what everyone is about and we know what it will be like next season.”