U18s Report: Middlesbrough 1-1 Leeds United

Hosts snatch a point in stoppage time.

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U18 Premier League North

Middlesbrough 1 (Myers-Smith 90’)

Leeds United 1 (Gray 6’)

Middlesbrough: Fisher (GK), Tawiah, Scott, Wilson, Acheampong (Muwana 46’), Myers-Smith, Hamelberg (Greenup 67’), Coulson (Smith 89’), James, Lennon, O’Gorman (Dore 67’) Subs not used: Lloyd.

Leeds: Grainger (GK), Billett, Lopata-White, Creswell (C), Simo (Morris 74’), Pickles, Lane, Cotcher, Pirie, McDonald, Gray. Subs not used: Balogun-Ajisafe, Howard, Kenyon, Whitehead.

Booked: Tawiah, Greenup (Middlesbrough), Lane (Leeds)

Venue: Rockcliffe Park

A last gasp Middlesbrough Under-18s equaliser denied Leeds United Under-18s from taking all three points from Teesside on Saturday afternoon, after Harry Gray’s early goal left Leeds in front for the majority of the game.

Rob Etherington’s side got off to the perfect start when they were awarded a penalty inside six minutes. A cross was delivered into the box towards Gray who was pushed in the back as he went to head the ball, leaving the referee with no other option than to point to the spot.

Gray stepped up to take the penalty himself and he calmly stroked the ball straight down the middle to put the Whites one-nil up.

After what was a fast start to the game, it then settled down with both sides struggling to create any clear-cut chances. Fin O’Gorman came closest for the hosts as he found space in the box to get a shot off on goal, but Owen Grainger was equal to it as he kept his effort out.

In the 35th minute, Middlesbrough created an opening when Judah Tawiah slipped Frankie Coulson through on goal, but once again Grainger was out quickly to prevent the attacker.

Heading into the last few moments of the half, Lewis Pirie nearly added a second for Leeds. Joe Billett played a beautiful pass over the top to Pirie, who took it down and cut inside but Nathan Fisher was equal to his effort.

HALF TIME: Middlesbrough 0-1 Leeds United

Pirie started the second half the same as he ended the first half, once again with another chance to double the Whites advantage shortly after the restart. He was played in behind and looked to bend it into the far corner, but Fisher was equal to it in the host’s net.

Straight after that chance for Leeds, Coulson found himself through on goal for the hosts. Grainger came out and got a strong hand on his shot with Reuben Lopata-White then reacting quickest the quickest to clear the ball off the line.

Heading into the final 15 minutes of the encounter, Mason Cotcher nearly sealed all three points for Leeds. Pirie set Josh McDonald away on the counter who drove at the heart of the defence and played Cotcher in behind, only to be denied by the Boro keeper.

As it looked like Leeds would be heading back to West Yorkshire with all three points, Alfie Myers-Smith scored in the fifth minute of injury time to snatch a point for the hosts.

Charlie Lennon delivered a free kick and Myers-Smith was there to smash home from close range to level the scores right on the final whistle.

This result leaves Leeds ninth in the Premier League North, as they entertain Sunderland next week at Thorp Arch.

FULL TIME: Middlesbrough 1-1 Leeds United

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