Mill United secured a thrilling 4-2 victory against ten-man North Motherwell Blue in the U13 Central Lanarkshire Youth Football Association B Division.
A double from United’s Cole Mills, as well as strikes from Jacob Straub and Nicolas McGuire helped the home side claim all three points at Fairhill Park.
A fine double by North Motherwell’s Justice Solomon after his team were reduced to ten men inspired the visitors in the second half, but ultimately the unbeaten Mill United came out on top at full time.
The home side showed their intent early on when they created the first chance of the match just two minutes in. Ethan McMullan dragged his shot from the left just wide.
They had another great chance to open the scoring with 15 minutes played. Straub agonisingly hit the woodwork after he found space in the penalty area.
But the deadlock was broken just 60 seconds later when Mills fired home a cool finish with his left foot inside the six-yard box. The midfielder, who can also play at centre-forward, showed a striker’s touch from close range following a corner from the left-hand side.
North Motherwell looked to respond instantly from a direct Declan McKendrick free kick, but Finnlay Craig held well.
And the keeper was there again to preserve the lead, this time denying Solomon after the striker fired a shot away on the angle.
The away side continued to search for an equaliser but were hit on the counter attack eight minutes from the interval. Defender Danny Preston was red carded for stopping a goalscoring opportunity as North Motherwell found themselves thin at the back.
From the resulting set piece, Straub showed brilliant technique, whipping in a free kick for 2-0.
Mill United looked to put the game beyond their opponents after the break, but an excellent save by Luke Simmonette from McGuire’s effort gave his teammates hope.
This stop proved crucial as in the 48th minute, Solomon grabbed a lifeline for North Motherwell, showing great strength and determination to evade the opposition defence before rounding the keeper and finishing into the empty net.
However, McGuire restored the two-goal advantage for the team in red and black. He sent a fine low shot from the right side across the face of goal and saw the ball nestle in the far corner.
There was to be another twist in the tale, though, when Solomon scored a fantastic second. He found space from far out and dinked the keeper superbly to set up a dramatic last ten minutes.
Nevertheless, United wrapped up the win as Mills got in on the act again, picking up a brace of his own. After being played through, the number 14 showed a cool head once more to beat the goalie one-on-one in what was the last kick of the ball.
The result in Hamilton means that Mill United remain undefeated in the league, with games in hand due to their exploits in cup competitions.
North Motherwell on the other hand can hold their heads high having produced a spirited performance, despite playing the majority of the game with a man down.
Mill United Player of the Match: Cole Mills
It is clear why he started the season as a forward, producing two fine finishes to accompany an all-round accomplished midfield performance.
North Motherwell Blue Player of the Match: Justice Solomon
The striker put in a great effort the whole game, inspiring his side to a late fight back with an excellent double.
Mill United Magic Moment: Free kick speciality
Jacob Straub put United in the driving seat in the first period with a superb strike from a dead ball. A wonderful goal.
North Motherwell Blue Magic Moment: Long-range chip
Justice Solomon’s spectacular dink from long range was a joy to watch and capped off a very impressive all-round showing from the attacker.
Mill United U13s
1. Finnlay Craig
2. Kai Tootle
3. Ellis Brown
4. Jamie Robertson
5. Calum Gillespie
6. Jack Thomson
7. Thomas McCandless
8. Cameron Kerr
10. Nico Caira
11. Jacob Straub
14. Cole Mills
15. Blair McDonald
16. Jamie Stewart
17. Nicolas McGuire
21. Ethan McMullan
North Motherwell Blue U13s
1. Luke Simmonette
3. Dylan Thomson
4. Danny Preston
5. Aiden Simmonette
6. Findlay Clarke
7. Brodyn Lewis
8. Cayden Kennedy
9. Brandon McBride
10. Fionn McGuiness
11. Dom Duckett
12. Jude Provan
13. Declan McKendrick
14. Justice Solomon
18. Freddie Walker
19. Samuel Ngandu
20. Aidyn Stevenson
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