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Rovers u18s 1 Liverpool u18s 2

10 November 2015

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Rovers' Under-18s slipped to a narrow 2-1 loss to Liverpool at Brockhall on Saturday.

In testing conditions, the visitors raced into a two-goal lead, but although Ramirez Howarth reduced the scoreline, they were unable to turn their chances into goals to earn a share of what was a hard-fought encounter.

Rovers started slowly but were the more threatening of the two sides once they got into their stride. Tre Pemberton struck the post with a fine effort, before the winger went close with another opportunity.

Fellow attacker Howarth also caused the Reds' defence problems, but more often then not his dangerous deliveries just lacked that vital touch in the penalty box.

So it was somewhat against the run of play that Liverpool took the lead when a cross from the right was eventually forced home by Bobby Adekanye.

Rocked by the goal, Rovers recovered quickly to end the first half strongly, and they continued to take the game to the opposition in the second.

However after Lewis Travis saw yellow for a foul on the edge of the box on the hour mark. Liverpool took full command as Yan Dhanda scored direct from the free-kick to double their advantage.

Unbowed, Rovers looked for a way back into the match and their attacking play was eventually rewarded on 75 minutes.

Substitute Mason Fawns attacked well before slipping the ball inside to Howarth and he took a touch before finding the top-right corner with a sweet left-foot strike.

The home side kept pressing, only a fine save from the Liverpool keeper prevented Joe Rankin-Costello from equalising when through one-on-one. But despite plenty of possession, and chances in the box, the ball just wouldn't drop.

To compound home frustrations, defender Travis picked up a second soft yellow card in added time at the end of the match to finish with ten men.

"We were happy with the way the lads went about it," said coach Ian Jones. "We showed a great work ethic and spirit.

"We were a little disappointing in possession and we could have used the ball better with the chances we created.

"Overall we are pleased to have competed with one of the biggest academies with a young squad but just disappointed with our quality on the ball."

ROVERS: Fisher, Travis (c), Askew, Tomlinson (sub Grayson 46 mins), Magloire, C. Doyle, Pemberton, Mols (sub Makinson 75 mins), Steer (sub Fawns 70 mins), Rankin-Costello, Howarth.

Subs not used: Ascroft, Pirretas.

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