Under-18s: Reds stung by a strong Stoke side
Manchester United's Under-18s endured a tough time at the Aon Training Complex on Saturday, losing 3-1 to a more experienced Stoke City line-up.
Deji Sotona grabbed an equaliser for United on his 17th birthday, but Stoke restored their lead just before the break through Josh Ireland.
A further goal for the visitors, scored by Andre Godfrinne, just after the restart proved to be enough to give them the away win.
The Reds were aiming to bring down the curtain on this year’s league fixtures on a winning note, following the 5-3 defeat at West Bromwich Albion the previous Saturday.
On an almost autumnal morning at Carrington, the kick-off was preceded by a minute’s silence as a mark of respect for victims of the recent events on London Bridge and also for Stoke City’s Benik Afobe, whose two-year-old daughter tragically passed away after contracting an infection.
The game started with the visitors taking an early grip on proceedings and it is no exaggeration to say that the Potters could have been three goals to the good inside the opening six minutes. Had it not been for the agility of United ‘keeper Ondrej Mastny and the frame of his goal, that would have been a reality.
It was no more than the visitors deserved following their impressive opening, but the Reds gradually got into the game and just after the half-hour mark, birthday-boy Sotona atoned for his earlier error by scoring with a terrific angled drive to put United back on terms.
So half-time arrived with the game finely balanced but almost immediately after the restart, United’s task of pulling the game around became more difficult after Stoke found the net for the third time. Potters goalkeeper Nathan Broome lofted the ball downfield and strikers Sankoh and Godfrinne combined smartly with the latter placing his shot past Mastny.
That's how the scoring ended, meaning the Reds' four-match unbeaten run at home - a sequence dating back to September's 3-2 reverse to Everton - was brought to a close.
United: Mastny; Neville, Fish, Hockenhull, Bejger (Hughes 46); Svidersky (Helm 59), McCann; Wellens, Shoretire (Mejbri 72), Sotona; Hoogewerf.
Substitutes not used: Denham, Mee.
Goals: United - Sotona 31 | Stoke - Porter pen. 9, Ireland 38, Godfrinne 48.
Reading this in our app? If not, you might miss some exclusive features not found on ManUtd.com. Download the Official App here.