England Schoolboy U18 squad selected from the last 33 stage at Lilleshall

Monday 13 January 2014By ESFA Office

Last Updated:
29/01/2014 15:57:59

England Schoolboys Trialists A

As ever, it was extremely difficult to decide on which players should go forward to represent the association in the Centenary Shield for 2014.

Following a couple of coaching sessions with the group on the Friday afternoon, the players were divided into two groups to play in competitive matches the following day. See match reports below by Stuart Inger Council member and selector.

The RAF players and staff were a credit to their badge, the game was played in a competitive and fair manner, just what we were hoping for.

I must also say thank you to Keele University Football, for providing not only a decent team, but also for the way your students approached the game both on and off the field. They were a credit to their institution.

England Schoolboys Trialists B

As manager of the team, it is always the worst part of the role when you know that you are choosing one boy over another in certain positions. Those who have been successful, I congratulate you on achieving something special. Yet, the hard work only really starts now for you, you must be fit and your best as the games come along quickly now. Those who didn’t make it, I am sorry I could not include you, you are excellent footballers and one or two of you may actually come back into the process. But I hope you have enjoyed the experience and you still have a lot of football ahead of you in your life. Enjoy that and I wish you every success in the future.


Andy Buckingham

ESFA U-18 Team Manager


Action from the first game v RAF

11th January 2014

As usual this encounter began at a furious pace with neither side taking control of the game and there were few early chances created until Andre Williams from the RAF forced a mistake allowing him to lob the advancing goalkeeper, Hadler. Quick thinking Jared Acton spooted the danger and raced back to clear from under his own bar. Then an almost identical situation at the other end after 9 minutes saw an RAF defender head away from beneath his own bar.

Gradually ESFA took control with Daniel Bruce prominent, and it was he who raced in from the right in the 22nd minute and hit a right foot shot when all expected a left footer. The pace and swerve on the ball deceived the RAF custodian who could only parry the ball out and into the path of the onrushing Ryan Charnley who neatly volleyed home. 1 - 0.

Both teams then overplayed and created few chances. Acton and Danny Haille looked solid at the back for the ESFA, and Tom Devitt and Harry Smith both had chances to increase the lead before half time.

The second half started pensively as the many subs on both sides settled in, until in the 52nd minute a neat move involving Bruce, Liam Upton and Dominic McGivron, forced a scrambled clearance from the RAF and when the ball was returned from the left Upton was only able to scoop it left footed over the bar from 7 yards out - a very good opportunity to increase the lead missed.

The RAF were beginning to up their game and use their strength, on one occasion bursting through the middle of the defence line only to rattle the right hand post with fierce shot. Then in the 70th minute RAF were awarded a soft penalty after Harry Owen and Devitt were adjudged to have sandwiched a player as he entered the box from the right. Chard slotted home with a vicious shot which Kieron O'Hara reached but could not stop. 1 - 1.

In the 85th minute Bruce had a final chance to win the game but chose to flick the ball weakly with the outside of his right foot when a firm left foot drive past the advancing and stranded keeper would surely have scored.

All in all a fair result and a good challenge for the trialists.


ESFA Trialists v Keele University

11th January 2014

This was a new fixture for an U18 trial and proved to be an excellent test for the trial squad despite the scoreline. Keele put out a strong enough squad which approached the game in an excellent manner.

Early exchanges saw Oliver Brown- Hill teasing the Keele back 4 and winning a corner on the left. This came to nothing but when he was put through by Joshua Wooley in the 10th minute the final attempt was touched wide. In the 14th minute GK Matthew Morrish was called into action when a weak back pass meant he had to scramble for the ball but succeeded at the second attempt. With ESFA gradually becoming more dominant, Brown Hill was looking strong on the left and Tyler Lyttle outpacing Keele on the right. In the 26th minute Little watched as his stunning cross missed by all, when only a slight touch would have put it in the net. From a corner in the next minute Charlie Russell dragged his shot wide of the right hand post. He followed that by setting up Brown Hill who lobbed the keeper into the net but was adjudged to be offside.

Brady Hickey put yet another attempt past the post before Brown Hill at last broke the stalemate in the 34th minute when the keeper fumbled his first attempt and he was onto it immediately, jinked past a defender and the goalie to tap home. 1 - 0.

With Keele looking shaky the strong Andrew White at left back peppered them with crosses, setting up one superbly for Wooley but his header was misdirected.

The second half started much as the first had finished with Brown Hill causing chaos down the left, but his and White’s crosses being set wide of the target by Hickey and Woolley. 60 minutes into the game a mazy run through the defence by Connor Lowes set up yet another chance for Sam Mitchell but he tapped wide from only 6 yards out.

Four minutes later an excellent Mitchell cross from the right found Dean Briggs whose fierce volley hit a defender and went over the bar. From the corner clearance Kane Smith received the ball in midfield from Charlie Russell and raced forward, played a perfect 1-2 with Lowes then rounded the keeper to slot home. 2-0.

It was Smith again in the 71st minute who picked up a poor clearance in the centre of the park and took it forward to about 22 yards out and smashed it past the stranded Keele ‘keeper. 3-0.

With the Keele team looking more and more tired (they had all played the previous day) chances fell to Mitchell, Lowes and Wooley, but were not converted until two minutes from the end when a left wing break from Lowes set up Mitchell who used all the available space in front of him to score. 4-0 and a comfortable victory for the trialists.

Photos Courtesy of RWT Photography


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