Newcastle United U18 3-0 Sunderland U18
Sunderland under-18s began their Premier League merits group in disappointing fashion, enduring an afternoon to forget at Newcastle United.
The visitors, however, started life on Tyneside with real intent, going close in the first minute to edging themselves in front.
Newcastle responded swiftly, though, with Callum Smith going straight down the other end and forcing stopper Michael Woud to tip the ball round his post.
With both sides with their foot on the pedal, the high octane opening continued as jinky winger Jack Diamond beat the offside trap but saw his cross from the by-line collected by the Magpies ‘keeper.
But just as the visitors thought they had grabbed a hold of the Tyne-Wear clash, the hosts had an appeal for a penalty in the 14th minute waved away.
Dan Lowther’s low drive was blocked by midfielder Chris Allan, and just as the youngster thought he had dealt with the danger the ball bounced up and struck his arm.
Appeals were aplenty from the Magpies, but the referee dismissed all claims.
However, just five minutes later Newcastle did manage to break the deadlock when Mace Goodridge’s left-footed strike from the edge of the box had enough on it to beat keeper Woud.
The Black Cats responded well to going behind, though, and could’ve equalised shortly after from the spot.
Magpies full-back Craig Spooner was penalised for a foul on Swedish defender Oscar Krusnell as he strode into the box. Unfortunately, though, topscorer Lee Connelly was unable to make amends as Nathan Harker guessed correctly to tip the ball round the post.
Wave after wave of attacks continued to crash against Newcastle’s backline as the young Black Cats seemed undeterred by their penalty miss.
Harker, though, was on top form and produced a string of fine stops to keep his clean sheet intact.
The Black Cats could count themselves unlucky to go into half-time behind, but little could condone their sluggish start to the second period.
Half-time substitute Jack Robson, who replaced Owen Gallacher, doubled the Magpies lead in the 49th minute following a surging run which saw him beat two defenders before slotting home.
Sunderland continued to fight but the hosts made it three against the run of play with 22 minutes left on the clock.
Sloppy defending from the Black Cats presented Smith with a golden chance to drill the ball into the back of the net.
That said, the visitors had several more chances with Jacob Young having his attempted cleared off the line before Diamond flashed a header wide of the post and Alex Storey had an effort tipped onto the bar.
Newcastle: Harker, Spooner, Kitchen, Goodridge (Sangare 66),Aziakonou, Gamblin, Gallacher (Robson 45), Lowther, Watts, Heaney (c), Smith.
Not Used: Huuhtanen, Sorenson.
Sunderland: Woud, Gamble, McAughtrie (Storey 75), Allan, Taylor (c), Young, Best (Kimpioka 63), Hackett, Connelly, Diamond, Krusnell.
Not Used: Newman, Howard, Slack.