Wrexham’s youth team came from a goal down to register a 4-1 victory over table-topping Chorley in a feisty National League U19 Alliance encounter at Airbus; Owen Cushion capping a fine individual display with two second-half goals.
Dan Nolan’s side were forced into a late change ahead of kick-off as Rowan Davies felt a slight pull in the warm-up, Cai Evans deputising at centre-back. Despite the disruption, Wrexham settled quickly, and James Rainbird’s fifth minute cross found Jacob Milner who fired into the side-netting.
Chorley, with former Wrexham striker Andy Preece in the dugout, responded with a snapshot from Harvey Roberts which was blocked before Milner saw another effort well saved by Magpies’ keeper Oliver Green.
The visitors took the lead on 16 minutes when a long ball caught out the Reds’ defence and Sullivan Barker raced through to shoot low past Matty Hess. Unbeaten in nine matches, Chorley then started to show the form which had seen them set the early pace in the division. Their robust style unsettled the Young Reds, but the visitors were unable to convert their possession into further goals.
The game then turned on an incident six minutes before the interval, goalscorer Roberts receiving a yellow card for a challenge on Dan Wright whilst in the aftermath James Wilkinson saw red for foul and abusive language. With Wright unable to continue, Alfie Lussey took over at right-back as Wrexham looked to press home their numerical advantage.
Roberts came close to doubling Chorley’s lead six minutes after the interval, Hess making a smart stop to keep Wrexham in the game. Within sixty seconds, a long range shot from Harry Ashfield almost caught out Green but the keeper managed to tip the ball onto the bar before gratefully collecting the rebound. He was less fortunate three minutes later when Cushion’s low shot found the corner of the net from 20-yards out.
The turnaround was complete after 57 minutes when a great run and cross from Ashfield allowed Caleb Hughes to bundle the ball over the line from close range. The result was put beyond doubt on the hour mark as Hughes was fouled inside the area, Cushion sending the Chorley keeper the wrong way from the resultant spot-kick to make it 3-1.
Preece’s growing frustration on the sidelines saw him also enter the referee’s notebook as his Chorley side struggled to cope with the passing and movement of a rampant Wrexham. Mikey Hayman added a fourth goal on 72 minutes when he held off his marker to rifle home from inside the area, completing a thoroughly deserved win in the process.
Wrexham: Hess, Wright (Lussey 39), Rainbird (Roberts 87), Dean, Cushion, Ashfield, Edwards, Hayman (Simpson 87), Hughes, Milner, Evans
Subs not used: R.Davies, Pilkington
Report and photo courtesy of David Roberts, Wrexham AFC Archive