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Match Reports

Under 16s Report: Mayo International Cup

27 August 2015

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The academy under 16 squad spent the weekend in Ireland at the Mayo International Cup, competing against the under 16 sides from Republic or Ireland, Northern Ireland, Millwall and Castlebar.

Darren Molloy - lead coach, development stage (U9-U11) - was present on the trip and gave details of the experience: "The trip itself was very successful, it was a great opportunity for the lads to get away as a team and bond. 

"The competition that we played in was very strong, especially compared to last year. We played the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland's first teams, not their development teams, which made it a stern test for the boys and they had to work hard out of possession.

"They were forced to be mentally strong and it was a different challenge to what they're used to back over here. It really gave us a chance to understand the different players we have both off and on the pitch." 

The young Spireites side were involved in four challenging games over just two days, and while they were unable to win any, Molloy felt that there were positives to be drawn from the matches.

"The results were mixed," he said. "But the kids showed themselves as having great attitudes across the weekend and they continually worked hard. We had no issues with them and they carried themselves correctly.

"The first game was against the Republic of Ireland and they were the ultimate winners of the competition. We were 3-0 down after nine minutes and I thought it was going to be a long game for us. But we got to half time at 3-0 and after the break the boys came out with a real determination and great attitudes and we were 1-0 up for most of the half until an unfortunate late own goal, making the final score 4-1.

"We carried that into the game with Northern Ireland and it was a cracking game of football. We made life really uncomfortable for them at the back and worked them hard. We were 1-0 up, but let in two sloppy goals to lose 2-1, but had the result been the other way round I don't think anyone would have complained.

"The game with Castlebar was disappointing, and I think the lads were struggling for energy after two games the day before. It was a game we should have won, but after dominating for 20 minutes there didn't seem to be much left in the tank and we lost 3-1.

"The last game with Millwall was a good game where it could have gone either way, but we lost 2-1 in a good challenging match.

"Overall it was a really good experience with some really promising moments and I know each of the lads will have learned an awful lot from the trip."

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