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YOUTH REPORT | Wrexham AFC 2-0 Walsall

Young Red Dragons secure back-to-back victories

2 October 2023

Match Reports

YOUTH REPORT | Wrexham AFC 2-0 Walsall

Young Red Dragons secure back-to-back victories

2 October 2023

Wrexham made it four league wins on the bounce after beating Walsall 2-0 in the EFL Youth Alliance at Colliers Park.

Victory was secured thanks to goals either side of the interval from Rio Owen and Harry Ashfield as the Young Dragons dominated the game from start to finish. 

Only a superb display of goalkeeping from the Saddlers’ Jenson Kilroy prevented Wrexham from recording a greater margin of victory, the young stopper denying Owen a hat-trick with a series of stunning saves.

PDP Lead Coach Nick Chadwick opted to make four changes to the team which beat Blackpool last time out, Max Hayes, Dan Davies, Harry Ashfield, and Mikey Hayman all coming into the starting lineup.

As early as the ninth minute Kilroy was forced to make a stunning double save to keep the scores level.

A fine flowing move involving Ashfield, Callum Edwards and Owen presented Hayman with a shooting opportunity. His effort deflected into the path of Owen, but his two snap shots were both parried at point-blank range by the impressive Kilroy before Cayden Bennett cleared the loose ball off the line.

Three minutes later and Kilroy was again in the thick of the action saving well from the impressive Owen.

Charlie Wragg tested Reds’ keeper Liam Hall with a long range shot but this merely proved a prelude to renewed Wrexham pressure. 

First Hayman saw his shot fly across the face of the goal, Owen then fired over the bar before Hayman sent a low shot inches wide of the post.

The opening goal finally arrived after 25 minutes when Edwards broke down the right wing and his low cross was met at the far post by Owen who netted from close range. 

Wrexham almost doubled their advantage sixty seconds later when Ashfield raced onto a poor back pass, but Kilroy raced out quickly to save the situation. 

There was still time for Kilroy to make one more full-length diving stop from Owen before the interval provided the visitors with a chance to regroup.

Wrexham’s territorial superiority continued in the second period with Hayes, Owen and Tom Kelly all going close before Ashfield added a second goal on 65 minutes. 

The attacking midfielder took full advantage of his team’s collective determination to win the ball back high up the field by rifling a 20-yard shot into the back of the net, his goal sparking joyous scenes of celebration amongst his teammates.

To their credit, Walsall refused to lie down, and Will Uchenna went close with a header before Hall produced arguably the game’s best save when he tipped a Piers Juliff free-kick round the post deep into injury-time. 

In between, Wrexham created a succession of goal-scoring opportunities as they ran out thoroughly deserved winners with a performance of impressive maturity.

Wrexham:  Liam Hall, Max Hayes (Hari Roberts 66), Tom Kelly, Alex Moore, Max Purvis (Harry Dean 81), Dan Davies, Callum Edwards (Regan Nicholas 81), Owen Cushion, Rio Owen, Harry Ashfield, Mikey Hayman (Keane Hazeldine 59).  Sub: Bryn Owen (not used).

 


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