Stanley’s under 18’s secured a hard earned victory against Burnley in blustery conditions at Gawthorpe.
Goals from Nathan Webb and Reuban Dass in the second half sealed a win in a game where the young Reds were forced to defend for long periods, but took their chances when necessary to see off their hosts.
It was the visitors who started brightly, when Webb burst through after latching on to a pass from Callum Gunner, but the his shot was comfortable for Tony Aghaysrs in the Burnley goal.
At the other end, the Clarets sparked into life and Khius Metz was the first to go close for the hosts, skewing an effort wide after a mazy run deep into Stanley territory. Shortly after, Burnley came forward strongly again, but Metz was thwarted by Christian Evans before Tinasyi Chakwana spun his the follow-up wide.
Burnley began to dominate possession, and their control nearly bore a reward when they were awarded for an adjudged handball in the box. Andy Nugent assumed responsibility from the spot, but Evans pulled off a superb save to his right to keep the scores level.
In a back and forth opening 45 minutes, the two sides seemed to take turns at coming close, with Metz the main thorn in Stanley’s side and eventual goalscorers Webb and Dass threatening the Clarets until the interval.
With chances at a premium after the first 10 minutes of the second half, the Reds took the lead. Good work from Jack Hartley down the left resulted in a low cross into a dangerous position, and Webb was on hand to slide in at the near post and break the deadlock.
In search for parity, Burnley continued to apply pressure without carving out a viable goal scoring opportunity, and Stanley made the hosts pay by grabbing a second just five minutes from time. Good link-up play between Dass and James Wolfenden down the right saw the former cut in and, on his left foot, fizzed in a superb strike to secure the three points.
Report by Jordan Eyre