United Youth 1-1 Sheffield Wednesday Youth

Last updated : 12 December 2007 By Thetashkentterror
Blues striker Gary Madine
With the carrot of a potential tie at Old Trafford against Manchester United to come it was always going to be a nervy and tense encounter between the Cumbrians and the Owls this evening, and so it proved as both sides were only to able to grab a goal each in 120 minutes of football where few clearcut chances were created.

It didn't take long for the two goals to come though as the visitors took the lead in the seventh minute with the first opportunity of the game. Matthew Bowman knocking the ball back for Callum Harrison 22 yards out who was able to fire an unstopabble right-footed effort into the top corner of the net past Carlisle goalkeeper Alex Mitchell.

United responded quickly though and equalised just four minutes later through Gary Madine, fresh from signing a 30-month professional contract earlier in the day. Blake heading possession to Cook who then touched the ball into Madine running on just inside the Wednesday box. Madine hammering a cracker of a half-volley with his right boot low and beyond the despairing dive of Owls glovesman Aaron Jameson.

Wednesday's Kosovan-born right-back Leon Lekaj went into the book of fussy referee Mr Stockbridge in the 17th minute for a foul on Connor Tinnion. Then two minutes later Madine, Andrew Cook and Stephen Hindmarch all combined well going forward for the Blues, but as they did for most of the night, the visitors defence cleared their lines well.

Midway through the half Leon's brother Rocky fired a cross in from the left but Troy Wood was only able to send a looping header into the arms of Mitchell from ten yards out. Moments later Blake feeding the ball into the feet of Matthew Wood, Blues midfielder Wood sending a 25-yard right-footed drive across goal but inches wide of Jameson's far-post.

Shortly afterwards Tinnion made a great run in from the left and sent in a low cross which was pushed out in front of his goal by Jameson, Wood then seeing his 15-yard shot blocked as the ball broke free. The game went through a really quiet spell now as stage fright seemed to get both sides a little as players in both teams tended to treat the ball like a hot potato.

With seven minutes to go in the half Blake, resplendent in his black gloves (pink had sold out), gave the ball away after a Carlisle corner. Wednesday's Wood then taking the opportunity to hit a long diagonal ball over the top and into the path of Rocky Lekaj breaking away down the left. The Norway under-19 international, who spent most of the night showboating with little actual end product, dragging a poor 20-yard drive across goal and wide of the target.

The last action of the opening period came two minutes later when an Owls corner in from that man Lekaj was punched away by Mitchell towards the back-post. The ball finding its way out to Sam Liversidge 22 yards out, Liversidge showing the usual shooting skills of a centre-half as his right-footed effort disappeared miles over the top and into an empty Warwick Road End.

As they had done in the first-half Carlisle started slowly following the interval and in the 48th minute some slack defending, allowing a cross in from the left by Rocky Lekaj and a knock back by Richard Stirrup, saw Bowman slice an attempted overhead kick well wide of Mitchell's far-post from the penalty spot area.

After 56 minutes Tinnion's corner in from the left was met six yards out at the near-post by Matthew Brown, the United right-back catching the ball sweetly with his right instep on the half-volley only for Jameson to make an excellent reaction save to prevent the Cumbrians from taking the lead. Bang on the hour-mark and Bowman and Wood combined for the visitors, Bowman's 22-yard right-footed pea-roller was an easy one for Mitchell to take though.

Carlisle left-back Matt Duffy was yellow-carded on 65 minutes, seemingly for dissent, then two minutes later Madine's low right-footed drive from the left-hand angle of the Wednesday penalty area was well held by Jameson at his near-post. United were pressing well now and in the 69th minute, Cook, set-up by Tinnion, saw his low cross in from the left hacked away from the boot of Madine on the six-yard line by Owls skipper Mark Beevers.

Sixty seconds later Charlie Tunnard hammered a right-footed drive on the turn from 22 yards out well over the top for the visitors. Blues boss Eric Kinder making his first change of the night from the break in play when he brought on Ged Dalton for Blake, Dalton taking the place of Hindmarch on the right who then moved into Blake's vacant central midfield spot.

Cook surprisingly escaped a booking for a foul on Leon Lekaj in the 72nd minute, then five minutes later Owls manager Sean McAuley made his only substitution of the evening when he brought on Ashley Worsfold for Tunnard upfront. After 80 minutes Brown's throw-in was touched off by Madine to Dalton but the United winger's right-footed drive from 15 yards out deflected away to safety off the back of Wednesday left-back Alex Barnes.

Neither side was doing much with the ball now as legs tired and the extra 30 minutes began to look more and more inevitable. Carlisle creating the only real opportunity to nick a late win in the 85th minute after Hindmarch had made a tremendous run forward, beating three defenders on his way into the Wednesday box. Sadly his cross was cleared by Barnes though and we were on our way to extra-time.

With 95 minutes now on the clock Harrison sent an extremely speculative right-footed drive miles over the top from long-range. Carlisle's Wood responding in kind from slightly closer territory when his off-balance left-footed half-volley thundered into the advertising hoardings at the back of the Waterworks end.

Three minutes before half-time Tinnion cut in well from the left only to fire a weak 25-yarder straight at Jameson. Then, just after the interval, United made their second change when Simon Lakeland came on for Wood in the centre of midfield. The Cumbrians were doing most of the pressing for a late winner and in the 109th minute Cook sent a right-footed half-volley over Jameson's crossbar from 20 yards out in the left-hand channel.

John Seaton was United's third and final change of the match when he came on for Cook in the 112th minute. With both sides looking like a completely spent force Carlisle skipper Hindmarch was booked for a foul on the half-way line on Rocky Lekaj. Barnes humped the ball forward into the Blues penalty area, Dan Wordsworth headed it out then Harrison thumped a 25-yard volley a long way wide of Mitchell's far-post with his right boot.

A draw was more than likely the fairest result over the 120 minutes when the final whistle came, although some shocking play-acting from Rocky Lekaj on the left and Matthew Bowman upfront from the visitors during the game hardly endeared the Carlisle contigent of the 188 spectators present at Brunton Park. Referee Stockbridge didn't have the best of matches either, over-fussy officiating being worsened by the ridiculous logic of not allowing either side to take in liquids during the change-around in extra-time.

Still, onto penalties, which were taken in front of the Warwick Road End. Blues regular taker Madine hammered his home before Wood thumped the base of the post for the Owls. Lakeland then slotting comfortably home, Harrison coming next for Wednesday and Mitchell was extremely unlucky as Harrison's poorly hit spot-kick squirmed under his body and just over the line.

Duffy scored next for United with Liversidge then seeing his effort excellently parried away by Mitchell to leave the scoreline at 3-1 to Carlisle after three penalties apiece. Brown had his spot-kick saved though, with Bowman converting comfortably to leave it at a nervy 3-2. Tom Aldred was the man with the next chance to take the Blues through, and he took that opportunity well by sending Jameson the wrong way to close the deal at 4-2.

Aldred then peeling away into the Paddock/Warwick corner with the rest of the United lads chasing him down for a big pile-on of celebration. Manchester United face Brighton at Northwich Victoria on Thursday night and it is only then that Carlisle will find out if the fantastic effort and work-rate they put in to emerge victorious this evening will result in, what for them, could be the night of their footballing lives at Old Trafford in January.


United - Madine, 1-0, right-footed, high to right
Wednesday - Wood, 1-1, right-footed, low to right, hits base of post

United - Lakeland, 2-0, right-footed, low to left
Wednesday - Harrison, 2-1, right-footed, low to left, squirms under Mitchell

United - Duffy, 3-1, left-footed, low to left
Wednesday - Liversidge, 3-1, right-footed, low to left, parried save by Mitchell

United - Brown, 3-1, right-footed, low to left, parried save by Jameson
Wednesday - Bowman, 3-2 right-footed, low to left

United - Aldred, 4-2, left-footed, low to left

United line-up :

Alex Mitchell, Matthew Brown, Matt Duffy, Jonny Blake (Ged Dalton 70), Dan Wordsworth, Tom Aldred, Stephen Hindmarch (c), Matthew Wood (Simon Lakeland 107), Gary Madine, Andrew Cook (John Seaton 112), Connor Tinnion.

Unused substitutes :

John Jamieson (GK) and Michael Dowson.

Wednesday line-up :

Aaron Jameson, Leon Lekaj, Alex Barnes, Callum Harrison, Sam Liversidge, Mark Beevers (c), Todd Wood, Richard Stirrup, Charlie Tunnard (Ashley Worsfold 77), Matt Bowman, Rocky Lekaj.

Unused substitutes :

Arron Pratt (GK), Jamie Hadfield, Mukhtar Mohammed and Tom Connolly.

Referee - Mr SM Stockbridge.

Attendance - 188.

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