The under 16’s set themselves up nicely for their Shield Semi-Final showdown next week against Lisburn Youth with a victory against North Belfast on Saturday, click on the link to read more.
Saturday 29th November – Lisburn Invitational League under 16’s
Downpatrick FC 5 v North Belfast 2
Downpatrick were slow to start and quickly found themselves one nil down inside the opening 10 minutes. The goal appeared to waken the Downpatrick side up and they gradually clawed themselves back into the game and started to control the game.
A few positional changes and early substitutions gave Downpatrick a more direct approach to the game, Ben Curran who came on as a substitute after serving a two game suspension played a great ball through for striker Callum Shields who made no mistake from just inside the box.
As the game was approaching half time Andy McCoubrey won the ball on the right wing, he played a superb ball through for Curran to run onto but the North Belfast defender fouled him just outside the box. Shields took the free kick and hit an unstoppable shot into the net to give Downpatrick the lead going in at the break.
Half Time: Downpatrick 2 v North Belfast 1
Downpatrick came out in the second half with more confidence and started to move the ball around with more purpose and didn’t have to wait to long before scoring their third of the day. Shields this time turned provider, good interplay between him and Rory Anderson allowed Callum to play in midfielder James McAleenan. McAleenan timed his run superbly and made no mistake with a classy finish.
Downpatrick’s fourth goal and Callum Shields third of the day was the goal of the game. Caolan Bentham played a super pass down the left wing to Shields who cut inside and from the edge of the box rifled a shot into the roof of the net. With 15 minutes remaining of the game it was all Downpatrick, Bentham broke the offside trap down the left wing, and he drove into the box only to be fouled by the North Belfast right back leaving the referee with no option but to point to the penalty spot. Goal keeper Fintan Canavan took the penalty and sent the keeper the wrong way to make it five one to Downpatrick.
As the game entered the final ten minutes Downpatrick were caught pushing too many players forward and North Belfast broke and score from consolation goal and complete the scoring for the game. Downpatrick can take heart from good periods of play either side of half time and will be looking for a better start in next weeks Shield Semi-Final.