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Match Reports


13 February 2024

Match Reports


13 February 2024

Town fight back from three goals down!

- Huddersfield Town U19s 4-4 Rotherham United
- Young Terriers denied the win by late added time goal
- Bakre, Mebrahtu, Philpott and Isaac on the scoresheet

Town’s Under-19 side played their part in an extraordinary EFL Youth Alliance League game on Tuesday morning, coming from three goals down to get a point against visitors Rotherham United.

A young Town side fell three goals at the Millers Oils High Performance Complex, only to mount a second half comeback to take a 4-3 lead.

However, Rotherham managed to head home an added time equaliser to ensure a share of the spoils.

Coach Oran Thompson had to set his team up without any fit natural centre backs after Anthony Gregory reported ill on the morning, opting for a 3-4-3 featuring three full backs in defence.

Town tried to play out right from the off, and unfortunately that led to an error in possession from which Rotherham took the lead through striker Josh Ayres.

The Young Terriers did respond well initially. First Danny Isaac had a shot saved after being put through by a header from midfielder Marlie Neil, and then Cian Philpott squandered the chance to put Hazeem Bakre through on goal by delaying his pass too long.

Bakre and Isaac went close again before Rotherham took the ascendancy once again, and the visitors doubled their lead just after the half hour mark through a tackle that rolled into the bottom corner.

Town did keep going and only a great save from goalkeeper Bailey Hamilton denied Bakre a goal soon after, but Rotherham looked to have put the game to bed with a third in the 39th minute after a cross from our left was turned home at the far post.

Our goalkeeper Alex Walpole made two further great saves before the interval, at which point Thompson and Head of Academy Coaching George Danaher changed the shape of the side to a 3-5-2, with Neil dropping into the centre of the back three and Danny Isaac operating behind the front two of Zak Abbott and Bakre.

That move dramatically changed the momentum of the game. Just three minutes in, Bakre played Abbott through on goal, only for Hamilton to deny him with a great one-handed save.

However, it wasn’t long until Bakre was put clear again by Isaac’s pass and this time he finished comfortably past the helpless goalkeeper.

That spurred Town on, and they netted a second just four minutes later. Some patient passing ended with Bakre pushing a pass across the face of the penalty area for Under-16 trialist Milkyas Mebrahtu, who hammered home a beautifully hit drive into the corner of goal.

Town then equalised with their third goal inside only eight minutes, this time from the penalty spot. It was Abbott who was fouled when stretching to meet a ball in the area, allowing Philpott to step forward and convert from 12 yards.

The game was frenetic at this point. Walpole was absolved of a potential red card offence by the referee when Rotherham claimed he had come out of his area and handled the ball as a striker tried to knock it past him, but then Town immediately attacked again, with Abbott shooting wide.

Thompson’s side then took the lead for the first time in the game in the 62nd minute when forward Isaac, who had come to life in the second half, was played through by a combination of Bakre and Abbott, placing the ball confidently past Hamilton.

Town could and should have scored more. Bakre missed the target when well placed in the box and was then denied by Hamilton, who made an outstanding double save to keep out his shot and the follow-up from returning substitute Oliver Calland.

Hamilton also made an impressive save to push another shot from Philpott around the post, and he was rewarded for his efforts when the visitors equalised in added time. Rotherham had a distinct height advantage over us, and made it count when Ayres headed home a free kick delivered into the box from out wide.

Town’s team vs Rotherham United (3-4-3)
Alex Walpole; Jay Smith-Sway, Omari Mrisho (c), Gabriano Shelton (Mo Fikri, 44’); Donnell Garrick, Cian Philpott, Marlie Neil, Milkyas Mebrahtu; Hazeem Bakre, Zak Abbott, Danny Isaac (Oliver Calland, 77’)

Unused substitute
Hugo Bennett

Town goals
Hazeem Bakre (50’), Milkyas Mebrahtu (54’), Cian Philpott (58’ - penalty), Danny Isaac (62’)

Town booking
Milkyas Mebrahtu (66’)

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