Kinder on the Alliance Cup win
Head of Youth Eric Kinder gave us his reaction to the 5-2 Youth Alliance Cup victory over Accrington Stanley last weekend.
“It was good to get back into action after a couple of blank weeks and the Alliance Cup is always one that I target," he said.
"Having said that, we never really seem to get anywhere so it’s nice to still be involved this time round. It’s always good to be drawn at home and the training throughout the week leading up to the game was centred around getting a quick and powerful start. That worked for us and we were a goal up with just seven minutes on the clock.
“Kyle Dempsey played the ball in for Greg Peel and he used his strength to turn his man and put it away. It was one of those where he took the shot early and the keeper didn’t see it until it was too late.
“It was all looking very good us and then Brad Staunch made a mistake in our half. He came lunging out at the midfield player as he tried to put it right and he ended up with a straight red card. I decided not to change the formation after that other than to play with three dedicated centre halves.
“We had a nervy ten minutes while we got to grips with being a man down, but we steadied things and doubled the lead ten minutes before half time. Patrick Brough broke clear and finished it nicely, and we then scored the goal of the day to make it really comfortable.
“That came when Dale Minor played a ball down the line and Patrick [Brough] cut back inside with his first touch. He took a few steps before he rattled it into the back of the net with the keeper well beaten.
“We didn’t start the second half well at all, if I’m being honest, and we to make matters worse we then had to make a substitution as Jack Lynch started to struggle with an injury. That knocked our rhythm and they took advantage by scoring a goal just on the hour mark. The lads seemed to react to that quite well but I had the Burnley scenario running through my mind and it was a bit of a worrying spell for me.
“It was a massive relief when we scored the fourth goal ... and it wasn’t a bad finish either. Kyle Dempsey took charge of a free kick just outside the box and showed great technique to bend it into the top corner.
“They got another one back but even at 4-2 we knew the game was ours. We rounded things off for the day when Connor Thomson came off the bench and got our fifth. He broke through, drew the keeper and slid it under his body to make it look a very convincing victory for us.
“I was delighted with the lads because they had to play for 70 minutes with ten men. They had to cope with that and they played their football, so it was very good for confidence. It’s a shame we haven’t got a game this weekend because we don’t play again now until the next round of this competition on 19 January [Shrewsbury Town at home, kick off timing tbc].
“We’ll fit a couple of friendlies in between now and then but I think we’re all looking forward to pushing on again already. The length of this break isn’t ideal but we can’t do anything about it. We’ll just have to make sure we come back in the right frame of mind.
“The goals in this game were all terrific. We had some competent performances all round and it is a very good way for the lads to round off what has been a decent first half of the season. We look a good side when we do it right but we do know that we have to better with certain parts of our game. We have to be stronger out of possession because that has cost us against the more powerful sides. That will be addressed.
“We’ll have a right good go at it through January and February and we’ll see where we’re at in terms of the cup competition and our position in the league from there.”
United – Parker, Gwinnutt, Staunch, Morse, Minor, Lynch (Thomson 51), Berwick, Dempsey, Salmon, Brough, Peel (Clarey 66). Subs – Brass, McEvoy, Chisholm, Dixon.