Tuesday 26 of March 2019 saw the first of theESFA National Finals kick off with the ESFA Boys U18 Elite Schools’ & Colleges’ Cup at Blackburn Rovers’ Ewood Park.
After six rounds of exhilarating cup matches, the finalists were confirmed as Doncaster’s Balby Carr Community Academy and Gloucestershire’s Hartpury College.
Watch the FULL MATCH HERE –
Kick off: Balby Carr Community Academy V Hartpury College
Hartpury started on the front foot and in the 11th minute, King Baidoo gave Hartpury an early 0 – 1 lead, Baidoo hunted down a soft back pass, rounded the Balby keeper and slotted home into the empty net for 1.
Once the first goal came, Hartpury looked like they planned to add to their lead, however their efforts were thwarted by multiple smart saves from Shay Evans Booth.
The second goal came following a wide free-kick that was fired across the face of goal and was met by Josiah Dustan’s head at the back post making it 0 – 2 Hartpury in the 32nd minute.
The last clear cut chance of the first half fell to Balby Carr’s Sam Caygill, after the Balby boys initiated a quick counter attack. Callum Marsh burst down the right wing and smashed a low cross the box to Caygill at the back post. Before he could unleash a clear shot, Hartpury keeper Lewis Adams got down bravely to smother the ball and prevent the goal.
Half time: Balby Carr Community Academy 0 – 2 Hartpury College
Not long after the second half kick off, an own goal brought about the third goal of the game. The goal came from a Hartpury corner when the ball was fired in to the Balby near post by Romeo Fabrice Yao. The cross caused major confusion in the box and it was eventually knocked in by an a Balby defender making 0 – 3 to Hartpury.
Come the 58th minute, Hartpury found a forth from a good initial hold, turn and pass from King Baidoo to Owen Windsor in box. Windsor had a cool head as he slotted the ball past the Balby keeper right for four.
The fifth and final goal of the game came from Hartpury’s Theo Maye (83rd minute) after he whipped a cross free-kick towards the Balby back post. The cross managed to find its way through everyone in the box and into the back of the net.
Full time: Balby Carr Community Academy 0 – 5 Hartpury College
The final score at Ewood Park finished Balby Carr Community College 0 – 5 Hartpury College. Congratulation to Hartpury College on earning the title of 2018/19 ESFA Boys U18 Elite Schools’ & Colleges’ Cup National Champions.