Young Terriers show good character in latest Youth Alliance game
- Young Terriers focus on finishing evident against Burton Albion
- Gulutte Zunda, Sonny Whittingham and Shane Maroodza on target for Under-17s
- George Danaher pleased with the character and finishing of the Young Terriers
Huddersfield Town’s Under-17s showed off their work on finishing as they battled back in the second half against Burton Albion in the Youth Alliance League.
The Young Terriers were 4-0 down to the visitors on the hour mark, however a display of strong mentality and perseverance in the final half an hour saw them nearly get back on level terms thanks to goals from Gulutte Zunda, Sonny Whittingham and Shane Maroodza.
Work in training prior to the match had been heavily focussed on the finish phase, and aside from their goals, the Young Terriers attacked well and created a number of good opportunities throughout the tie.
In the first half the best opportunities fell to Conor Falls, who tapped in from close range only for the goal to be ruled out for a foul in the build-up, and Gulutte Zunda, whose powerful left-footed strike was parried away by the Albion ‘keeper.
Then in the final half an hour after Town went 4-0 down, the young side showed what they were really made of, scoring twice in one minute through Zunda and Whittingham, before Maroodza added another in added time.
Overall the performance was particularly pleasing for Academy Coach George Danaher, who was left happy by a number of factors.
“I thought it was excellent, the character of the lads to come back from being 4-0 down and nearly make it to 4-4 was fantastic really,” he said. “This programme we’re in is going to be a really high challenge, some of the lads reacted really well after conceding the goals and it led to us nearly making a comeback.
“Focussing on the finish phase, we had loads of chances, and actually, we scored some great goals. Some of the goals we scored today were moves that we’d been working on in training, which was excellent to see!
“You play against these teams and you never know what they’re going to set up like, and there is going to be a load of different scenarios in a game. I think we managed these well, we built with the centre backs, sometimes we were able to build with the full backs, and overall it was a fantastic performance.
“It’s also about the mentality for the young players. It’s going to be difficult, and it’s about finding out who the players are that are going to slump and put their head down when you’re 4-0 down and who the players are that are going to react positively and try and get the game back on track, and to be fair, the 11 that were on the pitch at the time did that.”
The Young Terriers will move onto the next block of training now, focussing on the defensive side of the game with fight zones, and next face Bradford City in the Youth Alliance League on Saturday 24 October 2020.
Town’s Under-17 Team (4-3-3)
Michael Roxburgh; Charles Nduwuisi-Ondo (Shane Maroodza, 57’), David Adewoju (Luke Daley, 57’), Josh Okpolokpo, Brodie Spencer ©, Myles Bright (Michael Stone, 46’), Sonny Whittingham, Donay O’Brien-Brady (Andre Edionhon, 80’); Pat Jones (Darnel Baxter Alleyne, 46’), Conor Falls, Gulutte Zunda
Donay O’Brien-Brady 63’, Conor Falls 64’, Shane Maroodza 90+2’
Huddersfield Town Under-17s 3-4 Burton Albion