Young Terriers continue their winning streak in the Premier League Cup
- Huddersfield Town B win 1-0 at the John Smith’s Stadium
- Loick Ayina scored the only goal of the game
- B Team now three wins in three in the Premier League Cup
The Huddersfield Town B Team continued their excellent run in the 2022/23 Premier League Cup campaign with an action-packed 1-0 win over West Brom on Friday evening!
Our captain and centre-back, Loick Ayina scored the only goal of the game, and his first goal of the season, as we defeated reigning champions West Brom to take our record in the Premier League Cup Group C to three wins from three so far.
Despite the first half finishing goalless, there was still plenty of action between the two sides and chances for both sides to take the lead.
The first effort of the game came from West Brom after dangerous winger Reyes Cleary carried the ball into the box and towards the net, but it was finally cleared by Neo Eccleston and went out for a corner, which amounted to nothing.
Ayina then brought his team forward and tried to send a through ball to Eccleston, but this was intercepted well by West Brom and the visitors regained possession.
The first free kick of the game was awarded to West Brom after Akeel Higgins was brought down by Ayina just outside the box, this also resulted the defender receiving a yellow card. The free kick was taken direct by Rico Richards, but went wide to the left of the net.
After this, Cleary drove the ball back into the Town box and shot from the side, but also sent his effort off target.
There was then a double chance for Town to take the lead through Connor Shanks after he hit the woodwork from the centre of the box and then hit the rebound just high and over the bar – this was the first great opportunity for Town in the 11th minute.
Centre back David Adewoju won back possession for the Young Terriers and sent a through ball to Kian Harratt, who drove forward with the ball and then fancied his chances from outside the area after two West Brom defenders were closing in on him, but his shot went just wide.
Once West Brom had regained possession, Cleary sent the ball to full back Zac Ashworth as he tried to drive into the box, but Ernaldo Krasniqi defended this well and denied them the chance to take the lead.
A second free kick was awarded to West Brom after Luke Daley brought down Ethan Ingram on the edge of the box. The set piece was taken by Richards and after bouncing in the box, it was headed clear by Brodie Spencer.
A corner was awarded to West Brom after Cleary tried to cross his ball into the box, but this was deflected by Spencer. The corner was played short and the shot from outside the area curled wide of the net.
Brahima Diarra played with great skill in the midfield, and he soon gave a pass to Luke Daley on the edge of the box. However his shot was plucked out of the bottom corner of the West Brom goal by the visiting custodian.
Another chance for the visitors resulted in a great save from Nicholas Bilokapic, with Cleary's latest effort was saved by the legs of our Australia Under-23 international.
Another shot from Richards in the 40th minute was blocked well by Daley and allowed Town to go on the counter-attack. Harratt was played onside to a thirough ball, but his shot was saved in the bottom corner by goalkeeper Ronnie Hollingshead.
The next effort of a relentless first half came through a free kick on the edge of the box for Town, where Spencer's delivery was just headed wide by Krasniqi.
Diarra sent a fantastic right footed through-ball to Shanks in the 45th minute, who then sent Charles Ondo on goal and his shot required a brilliant save from Hollingshead. Diarra tried to get the rebound and although he found the back of the net, the flag was up for offside.
The second half started just as lively as the first, as both sides created plenty of chances to get their sides in front.
Straight from the restart, David Adewoju made a great block followed by a great save by Bilokapic to block the danger.
This was quickly followed by a massive chance for our Young Terriers to take the lead as Harratt went one-on-one with Hollingshead, but his chance was saved.
Town were very much on the front foot, thanks in no small part to Diarra's amazing ability to beat opposition players at will in the middle of the pitch. He soon took the ball through the midfield and to the outside of the box before shooting just wide.
Town’s goal came in the 57th minute when Ayina scored the winner after being assisted by Diarra. Ayina had won the ball halfway into the attacking half and played a one-two with Diarra before taking the ball past two defenders and curling it low past the ‘keeper's left and into the back of the net, sparking great celebrations from the team by the corner flag!
However, a great save from Bilokapic was soon needed as he tipped Richards' shot over the bar and out for a corner.
Brilliant one-two-play between Diarra and Harratt put the Frenchman through on goal, but after beating the defender he smashed the ball high over the bar.
With West Brom looking for an equaliser - Cleary curling two shots wide from the edge of the box late on - the last action of the game in the 96th minute saw Diarra once again go into the box with the ball, but his shot was saved in the middle of the goal.
300 people came to support the B Team, including First Team Head Coach Mark Fotheringham as he kept a watchful eye over the young prospects.
The B Team is back in action in this competition at the John Smith's Stadium on Friday 25 November, hosting Middlesbrough in a 1pm kick-off!
Town’s Team (3-4-3)
Nicholas Bilokapic; Brodie Spencer, Loick Ayina (c), David Adewoju (Shane Maroodza, 70’); Neo Ecclestone, Ernaldo Krasniqi (Tom Iorpenda, 71’), Brahima Diarra, Luke Daley; Connor Shanks, Kian Harratt, Charles Ondo (Donay O’Brien-Brady, 87’)
Michael Roxburgh, Sonny Whittingham
Loick Ayina (57’)