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Youth Team on Cloud NINE

23 January 2017

Academy coach Dylan Kerr was understandably happy with his team's performance after they thrashed Lincoln City 9-0 on Saturday.

Four goals from Joe Rowley, a hat trick from Robbie Foster and one apiece from Josh Tipping and Joel Phillips completed the demolition job, in what was their first game of 2017.

The result was revenge for the reverse fixture at Clay Cross in October, while the performance was exactly the reaction Kerr was looking for.

He said: “The last time we played Lincoln they beat us 6-2, and one of the things we needed to do was give them a good game. We also needed to get ourselves back on the front foot and start the new year in a positive fashion.

“The players had been told a few home truths about looking after themselves and being professional by giving themselves the best opportunity in training and in games and it worked!”

Saturday’s victory was the young Spireites’ fifth of the season in the EFL Youth Alliance, and Kerr was happy to see that his team finally took their chances.

“All season we’ve created chances to score but our finishing has let us down, and we’ve come off with a defeat or a draw,” he said. 

“On Saturday, we got nine goals, but in all honesty we could have got double that!

“We needed it, in previous games we’ve dominated, not taken our chances and conceded silly goals. On Saturday we didn’t concede a goal and scored nine but I don’t want the lads to get carried away with that."

While all of the team contributed to the win, Kerr was especially pleased with the performances of his strikers and the u16 players involved.

He said: “All of the strikers scored bar Owen Darwent – who was unlucky not too, their ‘keeper pulled off some great saves from him.

“Joe scored four goals and Robbie – who we’ve just offered scholarship too last week and accepted – came off the bench with 25 minutes to go and scored a hat trick.

“We had three u16s on the bench and we like to get them involved as they’ve all got scholarships for next season, Luke Rawson and Zack Walker could have scored too and the score would have been more embarrassing but for their ‘keeper.”

The performance capped off a good week for the youth team, after several members of the squad stepped up to the reserve team for the match with Shrewsbury Town where they recovered from a two goal deficit to claim a creditable 2-2 draw. 

Kerr said: “Only Rowley, Dylan Hand and Dylan Parkin were not involved in the game with Shrewsbury, but I think the application and effort they showed in that game carried through to the Lincoln game.

“I said to them before the game, in football you’re rewarded for everything good you do, and your luck changes. 

“But if you’re playing bad and not caring about the game it goes against you and you come out with a telling off rather than a pat on the back.”

Several of the squad could potentially be involved in the reserve match with Notts County on Tuesday afternoon, before they return to youth team action against Grimsby Town at Clay Cross on Saturday (11am).

And with no first team match this weekend, Kerr hopes to see a few extra faces in the Clay Cross crowd, for a fixture he has fond memories of.

“Grimsby away was my first game in charge and we won 4-1, but across the academy and the scholars we’ve got to keep on getting better and improving,

“Maybe some supporters will see the result from the weekend and think there’ll be more goals. And who knows? Maybe even a couple of first teamers will come watch too, which would be a great boost for the lads,” he added.

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