Millwall U13s triumph in Warwick
Congratulations to Millwall U13s who have become Category 2 National Academy champions.
After negotiating a tough regional group with Brighton & Hove Albion, Charlton Athletic and Coventry City, the young Lions earned the right to contest the finals in Warwick, which consisted of eight teams including Sheffield United, Birmingham City, Brighton Hove Albion, Ipswich Town, Cardiff City, Huddersfield Town and Sheffield Wednesday.
The competition was divided into a Quarter-Final, Semi-Final and Final, with Millwall facing Huddersfield Town in the first game.
After a 10 pass move Johl Powell struck a wonder goal from 25 yards into the top corner of the net. After the goal Millwall started to enjoy more possession of the ball creating numerous chances.
Five minutes into the second half came the killer blow. Junior Tiensa created some magic on the left hand side, beating two players and delivering a pinpoint cross for Harry Taylor to volley home.
Following the 2-0 victory over Huddersfield, Millwall drew Premier League Cardiff City who had beaten Ipswich Town 3-0 in their Quarter-Final.
After numerous chances Cardiff City capitalised by going 1-0 up from a set-piece.
Louis Collins and Cameron Grant then combined well down the right hand side to deliver a driven cross which Junior Tiensa slotted home.
Two minutes later Luke Donnalen fired low to the goalkeeper’s left hand side from the edge of the box to put Millwall 2-1 up.
From a quick counter attack Louis Collins then cut inside to fire an excellent strike into the top corner.
Cardiff made it 3-2 late on and had a flurry of corners but The Lions defended resiliently to hold on for the win.
This set up a Final with Sheffield Wednesday who had beaten neighbours United in their Semi.
Having repelled a number of counter-attacking opportunities from Sheffield Wednesday which keeper Jamie Black dealt well with, Millwall went 1-0 up as Malik Morris found Junior Tiensa who delivered an early cross for Harry Taylor to get across his man and finish with the outside of his foot.
Cameron Grant made an excellent attacking run down the right hand side, only to be brought down 30 yards out. Junior Tiensa grabbed the ball and curled it into the top right hand corner of the net for 2-0.
Sheffield Wednesday made some changes at half time but couldn’t find a way back into the game and a third goal for Millwall, scored by George Alexander, was ruled out due to a tight offside call.
And so Millwall U13s where crowned Category 2 National Champions.
It was great to see the players lifting the trophy with five of the current squad of players having been with the club since they were U8s. What made the day even better Cameron Grant being named player of the tournament.
Millwall Academy Director Scott Fitzgerald commented: “This is a fantastic achievement for the players, staff and the club as a whole.
Anthony Gale (13s coach) and the team have worked extremely hard and I am pleased to see them reap their rewards. The 9-16 age groups only enter two competitive tournaments a year, so to end the season as National Champions is something that everybody at the club is very proud of.”
GK- Jamie Black
Defenders-Aaron Ibe, Nathan Carlye, Lewis West, Cameron Grant, Aj Dythe, Poyet Gallimore, Joe Wooten
Midfielders-Malik Morris, Angelo Theophilou, Johl Powell, Luke Donnalen
Strikers- Junior Tiensa, Harry Taylor, Louis Collins, George Alexander