Report: Millwall U18s 4-3 Blackpool U18s

CONOR Wilkinson's last-gasp winner took Millwall U18s into the fourth round of the FA Youth Cup following a goal-fest at The Den.

The tie never looked like it would be a dull affair after four goals were scored in the first 15 minutes and Wilkinson's second of the game in the dying embers saw off a resilient Tangerines side.

The opening goal came after only two minutes when, after the Lions failed to deal with a teasing Adeyinka Cole corner, the ball fell kindly to Henry Cameron, who had a simple finish from close range.

Within three minutes of falling behind, Millwall conjured up an equaliser through Wilkinson.

Winger Twum did well to beat his man down the flank before pulling the ball back for the striker, who cut onto his weaker right foot and tucked the ball into the corner.

The visitors restored their lead when Conor Ready curled a shot over goalkeeper Tom Wellham and into the top corner, moments after Wilkinson had almost scored in a carbon copy of his first goal at the other end.

But the Lions found themselves level once again with only 15 minutes played. Goalscorer turned provider as Wilkinson crossed neatly for Charlie Penny, who finished with ease from inside the box.

The Tangerines had a chance gifted to them by Niall McManus when his back-pass inadvterantly played in Ramone Blackett, but the forward could only scuff his shot tamely at Wellham.

Blackpool continued to press and took the lead for the third time when, after a blatant handball by Blackett went unpunished, the ball dropped into the path of Cole, who tucked in the fifth goal of the game.

Millwall responded through Twum's fierce left-footed strike before Wilkinson's sublime through ball put Penny in on goal, but his shot was cleared off the line after he had rounded the keeper.

Blackpool nearly opened up a two-goal cushion courtesy of Sam Turner's lung-busting run and shot, but his effort drifted wide, before Ade Cole's hopeful 20-yard effort was well held by Wellham.

Penny had the last chance of the first-half when he eluded his marker from Wilkinson's corner and attempted a cheeky back-heel, but the ball floated over.

The Lions equalised just four minutes into the second period when Twum finished off a neat triangle of passing, inspired by Wilkinson's clever flick.

Millwall had a chance to take the lead after 54 minutes when pressure from Penny forced a poor clearence into the path of Khari Oriogun, but the forward could only fire wide.

Penny's movement presented the Lions with another opportunity on 68 minutes when he eluded his marker and latched onto Thompson's neat through ball, but the end product was lacking and his powerful shot fizzed wide.

Twum was inches away from adding his second goal when his shot smacked the foot of the post at the end of a flowing move involving Wilkinson, Thompson and Penny.

Moments later, Millwall keeper Wellham stuck out an instinctive boot to keep out Cole's deflected free-kick as the teams headed into the final ten minutes locked at 3-3.

But in the dying seconds, Wilkinson stole the show with a superb winner. The Republic of Ireland U19 international swivelled between two Blackpool defenders and, after his initial effort had been blocked, made no mistake from the rebound.

Millwall U18s: Wellham, Newman, Hunter, Oriogun, Fitzgerald (c), De Havilland, Callaghan (Webb, 76mins), McManus (Thompson, 36mins), Penny, Wilkinson, Twum. Subs not used: Beadle, Nelson, Thongvivat.

Blackpool U18s: Hunt, Schuster, N'Daw, Turner, McGahey, Cross (c), Cameron (Fraser, 65mins), Shaw, Ready, Cole, Blackett (Charles, 59mins). Subs not used: Clayton, Rowely, Lomax.

Conor Sefton


4 thoughts on “Report: Millwall U18s 4-3 Blackpool U18s

  • December 5, 2012 at 08:20

    Wilkinson seems to be a player for the future. Always seems to do well and scores some cracking goals too. Lets look after him a bit better than we did with marquis cos that poor bloke is finished at Millwall already.

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  • December 5, 2012 at 08:57

    Is Marquis really finished though? KJ has frequently mentioned his name amongst Henderson and Keogh as our strikers for the first team. People say we should loan him out however KJ does genuinely see him as back up for the first team. But yes, Wilkinson does look a right prospect.

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