United celebrate one of the goals.

United progress in FA Youth Cup

Manchester United negotiated the first hurdle in this season’s FA Youth Cup with two goals, one in each half, from Dillon Hoogewerf, which ensured a smooth passage through to the fourth round, where we have been drawn away to Norwich City.

United, by no means, had an easy ride in this encounter against a Lincoln side that pushed us all the way in an entertaining evening’s football watched by 628 supporters.

The opening game of the FA Youth Cup campaign has always been anticipated for countless seasons, particularly for fans of more mature years, and this was no different as United welcomed the Imps for this third-round tie.

Dillon at the doubleVideo

United were surely starting the match as favourites but the visitors hadn’t made the long cross-country journey to make up the numbers and that was apparent in the opening stages when they were brimming with confidence and no shortage of ability.

The Reds were also in the groove and were closer, more than once, to chalking up the opening goal. Hannibal Mejbri was inches wide with a snap-shot and Hoogewerf forced Lincoln keeper Sam Long into using his sharp reflexes to pull off a fine save.

Lincoln also had their moments in front of goal and only the cat-like agility of Ondrey Mastny prevented winger Ben Sault from giving his team-mates a really good reason to celebrate.

Four minutes before half-time, United succeeded in making the breakthrough when Deji Sotona sped down the left wing and his cross was re-directed over the line by Hoogewerf.

United could be under no illusion that we were faced with an easy task against the youngsters from Lincolnshire so it was good to claim the lead just before the half-time whistle.

Sotona’s blistering pace down the left wing provided a constant threat and that was evident in the opening minute of the second half when he very nearly got in behind the visitors' defence.

And, in the very next attack, Mark Helm warmed Long’s hands with a cracking drive from outside the penalty area.

The Lincoln goalkeeper was having an impressive evening and he proved his worth once again when his good work denied Hoogewerf.

However, the Dutch youngster wasn’t prepared to allow Long to have it all his own way and, in the 63rd minute, he finished off Lukasz Bejger’s excellent approach play down the right to double United’s advantage with a cute flicked finish.

Lincoln very nearly claimed a consolation goal in the closing stages but Tobias Liversidge’s acrobatic overhead shot didn’t find the target.

MATCH DETAILS

United: Mastny; Bejger, Fish, Mengi, Svidersky (Neville 89); McCann, Mejbri, Helm; Wellens (Shoretire 72), Hoogewerf, Sotona (Forson 79).

Substitutes not used: Mee, Hockenhull, Hughes, Iqbal .

Scorer: Hoogewerf 41,63

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