An ideal start for the Eagles

Matlock Town Eagles rose to the occasion at the start of the new season to beat Underwood Villa 3-1 in a hard-fought Under 18s League One encounter.

In gusty conditions at Cavendish Fields, both teams fought for supremacy but chances, initially, were limited although in a tight first period, Eagles were on top creatively.

Sam Boam headed a corner narrowly wide and Matt Marshall flicked a through ball just past the post.

At the other end, Charlie Bittner had to be alert to clear the danger and keeper Harry Westnedge excelled.

The breakthrough arrived, following good work from Ben Harrison and Jack Crossley, as Scott Lester lashed home the ball with some venom but Matlock were unable to build on this and, with half-time break in sight, Matlock had calls for a penalty waved away and then saw Underwood secure an equaliser on the break thanks to two defence-splitting passes.

Spurred into action, Jacob Gunton slotted home to restore the lead and the third came courtesy of a thunderbolt Thomas Evans free kick.

Underwood ended strongly but Stephen Moore and Jack Johnson stood strong.