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Club News


30 September 2015

Under 18s’ coach Will Ryder reflects on his side’s cup turnaround.

  • Latics win 3-2 away at Preston in the LFA Youth Cup.
  • Comeback completed after trailing 2-1 at half time.
  • Will Ryder delighted with response after back-to-back league defeats.
Wigan Athletic’s Under 18s began their defence of the Lancashire FA Youth Cup with a highly competitive 3-2 victory away to Preston North End yesterday afternoon, with Latics coming from 2-1 behind at half time to win 3-2 thanks to goals from Nathan Randell and Callum Lang.

Speaking after the win at Chorley FC’s Victory Park, coach Will Ryder reflected on his side’s performance, delighted with their efforts and quality to turn the game around.

“We went behind early,” he began.

“We knew then that we needed a quick response, and we got that from Baz (James Barrigan), he’s shown great quality so far this season and he continued that with a brilliant free kick from the edge of the box.

“Equalising so early on after going behind in the first minute gave us a massive boost, something we really needed after back-to-back defeats in the Youth Alliance.

“We passed the ball really well in the first half, we were quick in possession, managed it well and our combinations in the final third were very effective.”

Latics fell behind just before half time, with Preston taking the lead just moments after Randell had a penalty claim turned down, but Ryder’s side didn’t let that get to them, and after some words of encouragement at the break they were soon level.

“We went in at half time disappointed because we didn’t deserve to be 2-1 down, so I just told the lads to carry on what they were doing.

“It worked and credit has to go to the lads for sticking with the system, the style and the aim.  Nathan was rewarded with a brilliant goal from the edge of the box and the momentum was back with us.”

Latics continued to impress with some free flowing football, a good achievement against a strong outfit said Ryder:

“Preston were a physical, direct and highly competitive team, so for us to keep playing in the manner that we did was a massive positive.

“All-in-all it was a very pleasing morning, and Langy (Callum Lang) came off the bench to win it for us with another quality finish.  We had to dig deep to defend for the final 10 minutes or so, but we managed it and we deserve our place in the next round.”

Eight of Latics’ starting XI against Preston were first year scholars, just one of a number of reasons for Ryder to be happy with the performance and result.

“We had a young team out, Theo (Roberts) was making his first appearance, and we had seven other first years who stood up to the test really well.

“It was good to welcome back Arnie (Baxendale) as well because he missed the Development Squad game at Burnley, and he’s been excellent for us this season.”

  • REPORT: Read the match report from the 3-2 win against Preston.
  • FIXTURES: See the full schedule for the Under 18s in 2015-16.
  • PROFILES: Get to know our youth team.

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