Vale Reserves Lose Out on Double in Penalty Shoot-Out
PORT VALE:Ryan Boot, James Gibbons, Aziz Deen–Conteh, Billy Reeves, Mackenzie Faulkner, Lewis Burgin, Omar Haughton, Chekaine Steele, Jonny Kapend, Achille Campion, Ryan Lloyd.
SUBS NOT USED: Calum Ferrie, Dan Turner, Alex Morris, Taylor Attrell, Brad Ede.
MIDDLESBROUGH: Luke Coddington, Andre Bennett, Bradley Halliday, Mathhew Elsdon, Mark, Kitching, Bryn Morris, Jordan Jones, Robbie Tinkler, Joao Neto, Callum Cooke (Bradley Fewster 66),Junior Mondal (Harrison Chapman 63) .
SUBS NOT USED:Jordan Jowers, Callum Johnson, Joe Fryer, Nathan McGinley.
The delayed Northern Final of the Third Development League Cup saw Middlesbrough U21s arrive at Vale Park for the final game before the 2015-16 season kicks off on Saturday. The Vale team very much reflected the team that featured as the Reserve side last year, so it at least gave the players the chance to win the competition that they had reached the final in.
minute. Bergin was unlucky to concede a free-kick just outside the penalty area and although the shot hit the wall the rebound was lifted over the crowd of players and Boot caught with confidence. 4 minutes later and Boot came to Vale’s rescue after Steele lost the ball in midfield and the ball was worked forward to put in Neto who saw Boot save with his feet.ndBoth teams opened with a passing game but Middlesbrough but there was no end product with neither ‘keeper being called into action until the 22
The respite was brief as after 29 minutes Cooke flighted a ball over Boot and into the corner of the net from 25 yards to put the visitors in front. Vale responded and Ryan Lloyd put in Vale’s first shot from distance but it was well wide and high. Vale’s most promising move saw Deen-Conteh beat his man in the corner and swing a dipping cross to the far post where Kapend rose highest to send a header back across goal but just on to the top of the net. Middlesbrough finished strongly with a neat passing move that cut through Vale’s defence but from 8 yards Neto scooped the ball over the bar to the home crowd’s relief but garnered significant applause for the move.
Vale began the second half on the attack with Kapend getting on the end of a Lloyd cross but directing the header just wide of the far post. A speculative effort from goal-scorer Cooke from 50 yards saw Boot scampering back but without any danger as the ball was well over the bar. With 57 minutes gone Campion made a chance for himself by beating his man in midfield and letting fly from 30 yards but his shot was too high. Middlesbrough’s next attack saw a good chance wasted.
rose highest to send a looping header dropping into the far corner of the net to equalise.Mackenzie Faulkner minute as Haughton cut in and played a near post ball that Kapend was just beaten to and resulted in a corner. Haughton swung the kick over to the far post where thVale came close in the 68
Middlesbrough almost retook the lead after 81 minutes after Deen-Conteh gave the ball away on the half way line allowing a rapid attack that ended with Ryan Boot saving with his feet as the ball cannoned clear to safety. Another raid down the right wing looked dangerous until Boot collected at the near post and was then called into action to collect a free-kick just in front of the onrushing visiting forwards. Vale had a chance in the final minute after Haughton gained a foul near the corner flag and the resulting corner saw a Bergin header hit the back of a defender and go for a corner. The visitors had the last chance as long range effort flew just wide before time was blown and penalties ensued.
Middlesbrough took the first penalty and Morris drove it home into the corner giving Boot no chance. Campion stepped up for Vale’s first and with a stuttering run committed the ‘keeper but then chipped it against the bar to leave it 0-1. Fewster put the visitors second in the same place as the first and Lloyd then hammered his shot against the post leaving Vale in a precarious state. Chapman slotted in Boro’s third meaning Bergin had to net or Vale were beaten without scoring; Bergin made no mistake to provide a life-line. The situation improved as Neto struck the bar and Steele brought it back to 2-3 with a well taken spot-kick. However Jones successful fourth meant that Middlesbrough lifted the cup with a 2-4 win on penalties.
Lindon Roberts – Port Vale Volunteers Group