THE ACADEMY

U18 Premier League Elite Phase
Trafford Training Centre, Carrington

MANCHESTER UNITED 1
(Nortey og 82)

CHELSEA 0

06/04/2013 14:58, Report by Cliff Butler

U18s: United 1 Chelsea 0

Manchester United's Under-18s collected a hard-fought three points with a 1-0 win against much-vaunted Chelsea at Carrington.

The Blues are generally regarded as having one of the best youth set-ups in the country, with some justification, but a bizarre own goal by Nortei Nortey proved decisive in pleasant weather in the North West.

There was not a great deal between the two sides but Chelsea had the best attempt of the first half when captain Alex Davey fired a splendid shot just wide of Jonny Sutherland's goal.

Two substitutions and a tactical adjustment, that led to Jack Barmby playing in an unfamiliar wing-back position, helped United find some rhythm. Soon after the break, Byrne was presented with a one-on-one opportunity but Ben Killip pulled off a good stop.

Joe Rothwell was through in similar circumstances but was denied by a defensive block and the Reds were unlucky not to score when Byrne stretched to meet an Andreas Pereira cross but saw the ball hit a post and roll to safety.

The pressure eventually told as James Weir released Byrne again and Nortey rushed back but his backpass bobbled past Killip for a calamitous own goal.

After Byrne passed up an opportunity to wrap up the victory, Chelsea piled on the pressure towards the end and went closest to grabbing an equaliser with a George Cole drive that swerved off target. 

United: Sutherland; Love, McNair, Grimshaw, Evans (Barmby 46); Weir, Pearson, Rothwell (A.Pereira 66), Rudge, Daehli, Wilson (Byrne 46). Subs not used: J.Pereira, Ioannou.