SUNDERLAND Under-16s felt the full force of an East Northumberland backlash on Saturday as the home side hit them for six to reach the semi-finals of the Durham Cup.
Following their exit the previous week at the quarter-final stage of the National Schools County Cup against Liverpool, East North’s manager Paul Messenger had asked his playing staff for a response.
And a delighted team boss said: “I got what I wanted and all of the lads played well.
“We had previously defeated Sunderland 2-1 at Ryhope’s ground in the NSCC but today we played them off the park after starting the first half on the front foot and leading 3-0 at half-time.”
Reece Ramsay began the goals rush giving his side the lead after only four minutes when he got on the end of a through ball from Jordan Cuthbertson and applied a great finish with his left foot from eight yards.
Luke Robinson then added a brace with strikes in the 15th and 34th minutes.
Cuthbertson was again the provider for Robinson who struck a right-footed half volley from six yards into the net, and then the same player left the keeper helpless with a snapshot from the edge of the area.
Early in the second period Luke Scott passed the ball into the net from 18 yards with a terrific left foot effort, and on the hour Adam Harvey finished with aplomb from ten yards after the keeper had spilled the ball following a great move down the left which culminated in a cross by Daniel Costello.
With five minutes remaining, East North racked up their sixth when Costello’s ball into the box saw a mix up between the keeper and his centre half which resulted in an own goal.
“The defeat by Liverpool was disappointing,” said Messenger
“But I was absolutely delighted with the response because these young lads have been fantastic today.”
The boss also heaped praise on assistant manager Tony Hayton, saying: “Tony has given me a hand all season and his contribution deserves to be acknowledged.
“He assists in team talks and is a big influence.”
On Saturday East Northumberland Under-15s are away to Newcastle City.
East Northumberland squad: Cameron Bowman, Daniel Costello, George Hayton, Luke Robinson (Ashington High); Nathan Brown, Jordan Cuthbertson, Kyle Dobson, Ross Fuller, Adam Harvey, Danny Sayer (Bedlington High); Melvyn Cook, Reece Ramsay (Duchess’s High, Alnwick); James Loughborough, Keelan Nellis, Liam Taylor (King Edward VI High); Luke Scott (Northumberland Church of England Academy); Louis Lenny (St Benet Biscop High, Bedlington).