Matlock Town under-18s added a further trophy to their cabinet last week as they secured the NPLFA Cup at Stoke City’s Bet 365 Stadium, writes Andrew Haines.
To add to numerous successes in recent months, such as their Holland Cup exploits and Derbyshire Divisional Cup North victory, the Young Gladiators rose to a 1-0 victory over Mickleover Sports to secure their seventh major title in three years.
To finish their season in style the youngsters notched the only goal of the game through Town prodigy Harry Wood.
Fresh from a stint in the first team, Wood powered the side in front during the first-half as he received the ball deep in Mickleover territory before unleashing an effort from 25-yards which found the top corner via a deflection.
Despite further pressure and chances at each end the side in blue could not be halted on their way to being cup winners.
The development manager Justin Tellus was delighted with the further achievement and praised all those in the development sector for a successful season.
“We are really pleased to finish the season as NPLFA Cup winners making it our seventh major title in three years,” he said.
“To do it at Stoke City’s ground makes it all the more special for the lads and sets us another platform to step up another level next season.”
Tellus added: “We would like to dedicate this cup win to head of development Steve Heath for his tiresome work and commitment to the club over the last three years.”
The Matlock Town Academy head coach Jamie Yates echoed the sentiments made by Tellus in praising his side.
Speaking to the NPL Football Academy, head coach Yates said: “We had lots of work rate, we had lots of endeavour and we had lots of work rate to be fair which we’ve seen all season - they are an honest group of lads.
“In terms of quality I thought we could have been better, I have seen us better but in cup final it’s all about winning and that’s what we’ve done.”