Report: Sheff Wed U18s 3 Hull City U18s 1
Hull City Under-18s suffered a 3-1 defeat away at top of the table Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday.
A penalty by Conor Grant and a brace by Elliot Vasalo secured all three points for the hosts in the U18 Professional Development League clash at the Owls' Middlewood Road, with Rob Guilfoyle scoring a late consolation for the Tigers.
John Anderson and Terry Boyle's young side had the first chance of the game when Dan Hawkins’ free-kick was missed everybody in the box, forcing Josh Render to push the ball around the post.
But, it was the Owls who opened the scoring with just eight minutes on the clock. Will Taylor was adjudged to have fouled Conor Grant inside the box resuming in the referee pointing to the spot. Grant stepped up and chipped the ball down the middle to score.
The Tigers almost produced an instant response to going behind, only for another Hawkins free-kick to clear the crossbar.
At the other end, Andy Smith blocked Grant’s effort while Lewis Farmer curled an effort past Harvey Cartwright’s post, before the Tigers came agonisingly close to levelling the scores following a flowing passive move.
Hawkins and Jay Rouse linked up well with the latter drilling a low ball across the face of goal, with Will Jarvis just missing the decisive touch at the back post. Smith then sent a header over the bar from Hawkins’ free-kick as the Tigers continued to press.
However, Sheffield Wednesday were two up before half time. Winger Elliot Vasalo picked the ball up from a throw-in and was allowed to venture forward before drilling a low effort into the bottom corner to double the hosts’ lead.
The Tigers had one more chance before the break when Rouse’s deflected cross fell to Rob Guilfoyle inside the box, but the striker could only slice his effort into Render’s hands.
The visitors made a bright start to the second half as Rouse and Hawkins up linked once again only for Charlie Reaney's last-ditch tackle to stop Hawkins from pulling the trigger.
More pressure was applied to the home defence as Jarvis' cross had to be cleared by Josh Dawody, with Hawkins looking to capitalise at the back post, whilst Cartwright had to be alert for the Tigers as Grant’s free-kick was punched away by the keeper with L’Varn Brandy putting the rebound wide.
But, the Owls put the game beyond doubt 22 minutes from time. A good free-kick routine saw the ball come to Vasalo inside the box, who showed neat control before slotting the ball under Cartwright.
Jarvis nearly got the Tigers back into the game with a mazy run into the box, only to see his effort well blocked by Reaney, although a late consolation did arrive when Guilfoyle headed home
The Tigers got a consolation late on with substitute Tommy Best putting a cross in for Guilfoyle to head past Render to give the Tigers a chance.
Wednesday came close to restoring their three-goal lead when Issac Rice headed over from Vasalo’s corner before Cartwright produced a brilliant double save to deny both Farmer and Hagan.
The Tigers had one more chance before full-time when Hawkins’ cross field pass found Jarvis. The winger squared the ball back for Guilfoyle, who blazed over from six-yards.
Sheffield Wednesday: Render, Dawody, Ellery (Oliver 58), Kenyon, Reaney, Rice, Brandy (Hagan 74), Farmer, Hammond, Grant, Vasalo.
Subs Not Used: Jackson, Cox, Thompson.
Hull City: Cartwright, Nicholls, Leake (Jacob 62), Taylor (Best 62), Adamson, Smith, Hawkins, Lovick, Guilfoyle, Rouse (Wood 73), Jarvis.
Subs Not Used: McAuley, Ward.