Seven up for youngsters

by Neville Pilkington

Under-18's notch biggest win of the season.

Sunderland U18 7 Bolton Wanderers U18 0

Sunderland ran riot in a seven-goal demolition of Bolton at the Academy of Light.

It was a smooth, clinical performance enhanced by seven goals of the highest quality, with Wanderers having no answer.

The young Black Cats took an early lead in the seventh minute when Lynden Gooch was brought down inside the penalty area and Martin Smith (pictured) hammered the spot-kick high to the right of Bolton keeper William Jaaskelainen, son of the current West Ham keeper.

Defender Tom Beadling got the second in the 18th minute when he picked up the ball a good 25 yards out and hit a scorcher which skidded off the damp turf low into the corner of the net.

On the half-hour mark it was three when Rees Greenwood fed Gooch, who turned and delicately chipped a super ball into the six-yard box for Andrew Nelson to head powerfully home.

Shortly afterwards Gooch himself made a brilliant pacey run, beating four men only to see his goal-bound effort cleared off the line.

Greenwood made it four on 40 minutes when he came in from the left, beating three defenders before placing the ball wide of the keeper.

Two minutes before the break, Gooch forced a good save from Jaaskelainen but the ball fell to Ethan Robson, whose strike hit the bar before Nelson hit a marvellous volley into the roof of the net.

The visitors marginally improved in the second period but the Wearsiders still added two more goals for good measure with Gooch bursting down the left to draw the keeper and slip the ball home from a tight angle.

The final nail in the coffin came on 65 minutes when Smith, who was outstanding throughout, played a neat one-two with Gooch before side-footing just inside the post to complete the rout.

Coach Carlton Fairweather was delighted with the display, saying: "We have been threatening to do this for a few games now even though this was not one of our best performances.

“Bolton had a young side out but so did we, including the subs.”

Sunderland: Burke, Ledger, T Robson (Ellison, 65), E Robson (Wright, 70), Colquhoun, Beadling, Greenwood, Smith, Nelson (Blinco, 65), Gooch, McEvoy.

Subs not used: Stryjek, Molyneux.