Report: Leeds United U18s 4 Hull City U18s 2
Hull City Under-18’s slipped to a sixth defeat of the season with a 4-2 loss away at Leeds United at Thorp Arch on Saturday.
Goals from Rob Guilfoyle and Tommy Best wasn’t enough for the young Tigers, as braces from Leeds’ Niall Higgins and Nohan Kenneh sealed all three points for the hosts.
The Whites tested the visitors early on, with Leeds captain Charlie Cresswell stealing the ball off Rob Guilfoyle on the edge of City’s penalty area but, thankfully, the defender’s shot flew over the bar. Cresswell then had to be alert at the other end as Jay Rouse played a good one-two with Guilfoyle before Cresswell slid in well to stop Rouse from pulling the trigger.
Leeds opened the scoring in the 23rd minute. Joe Stanley's cross was headed back across goal by Cresswell, and Kenneh was perfectly placed to head home his first goal of the game.
The home side could have been two up shortly after following good play between Kenneh and Theo Hudson, only for the latter to fire his effort over the bar.
It proved to be a key miss as the Tigers equalised moments later. Dan Hawkins’ effort was well-saved by Josh Rae, but Guilfoyle was the quickest to react to rifle in the rebound to bring the game level.
And it was almost 2-1 to the John Anderson and Terry Boyle's side continued to press with Hawkins seeing his effort kept out by the leg of Cresswell.
Chances came at both ends of the pitch in quick succession when Dane Burlace put in a decent cross for striker Henri Kumwenoa, but his effort was blocked by Harvey Cartwright.
In the opposite penalty box, Hawkins' corner was punched by Rae. The ball dropped to Rouse - and his second cross hit the inside of the right post before bouncing away.
However, the hosts were back in front before the break following a well-worked corner routine. The ball came to Higgins on the edge of the box, and he curled a fine effort past the diving Cartwright, which went in off the post.
In the second half, Cartwright produced a good stop to keep out Kenneh's low strike before Hawkins’ loose pass was collected by Jack Jenkins and the midfielder passed it through for substitute Nikolas Haugland, who dragged his effort narrowly wide.
The constant pressure paid off for Leeds though as Haugland played a through ball for Higgins, who kept his compose to slot the ball underneath Cartwright and bag his second - and Leeds’ third - goal of the game. And it was 4-1 two minutes later, with Haugland the creator once again as his superb pass, this time for Kenneh, was dispatched by the midfielder.
The Tigers never let their heads drop though fought back, with Rouse’s cross somehow not being put away by captain Jacob Greaves as his close-range header flew across goal.
Tommy Best produced a fantastic lofted ball for Guilfoyle to control inside the Leeds area, only for the striker to see his effort deflected over. And the revitalised Tigers came within inches of pulling a goal back when Rouse was denied by the crossbar. Greaves' low cross was parried into the path of Jake Nicholls, who intelligently laid it off to to Rouse, but the midfielder was left disappointed as his effort cannoned back off the frame of the game.
Guilfoyle came close with two headers in the space of a minute, sending his first effort wide of the target before seeing his second claimed by Rae.
However, the Tigers' pressure finally told when they grabbed a deserved goal. Winning the ball high up the pitch, Hawkins found Best inside the box and the midfielder fired his effort past Rae to make it 4-2.
There was still time for the visitors to create further chances in the latter stages. Nicholls send a header wide of the target, whilst Jake Leake saw his header cleared off the line before substitute Will Jarvis fired over from the rebound.
Leeds United: Rae, Burlace, Stanley, Blunt, Cresswell, Casey (Gibbom 79), Hudson (Rubie 90), Kenneh, Kumwenoa (Haugland 45), Jenkins, Huggins.
Substitutes Not Used: Turner (GK), Shergill.
Hull City: Cartwright, Nicholls, Leake, Taylor, Adamson, Greaves, Hawkins, Best, Guilfoyle (Jarvis 84), Rouse (Beckett 74), Bayram (Smith 58).
Substitutes Not Used: Robson, Carew.