GREAT SEASON: Barney U18s enjoyed an excellent season but missed out on the League Cup on penalties
GREAT SEASON: Barney U18s enjoyed an excellent season but missed out on the League Cup on penalties

Barnard Castle Junior FC

THE U18s travelled to Washington FC to play in the League Cup final against Whitburn and Cleadon which was a fitting end of season game for the squad this term.

Having had only one day's rest after playing the semi-final at home to Shinncliffe the U18s were still in a buoyant mood for a great occasion.

The game started with both sides having early chances but it was Barney who struck first. A pinpoint accurate ball in from the left found Cole Layfield who hit a great shot on the half volley leaving the Whitburn keeper with no chance.

Whitburn then started to come into the game and caught Barney out down the right side on a few occasions but Barney managed to deal with it. Barney then changed formation slightly and the danger was cut out.

Barney played some good football but Whitburn kept knocking on the door and they pulled a goal back midway through the half.

However, this didn’t seem to bother Barney and they were rewarded late in the half when Ty Morgan combined well with his strike partner Nathen Mawer who put a clever shot past the keeper making the game 2-1 going into the break.

In the second half, Barney were the brighter team, creating some good chances.

But Whitburn refused to give up and a high lob from the left found its way into the net.

Barney then upped the pace with Jonny Robinson now heavily involved in the middle. Barney went in search of the winner and after great approach play were unlucky on several occasions.

Whitburn then had a player sent off but with only a few minutes remaining but the game ended level – and it was straight to penalties.

Whitburn won the penalty shoot-out and Barney had to be content with runners up.

It was a cruel way to end the season in a game they thoroughly deserved to win but the occasion was great and every player showed themselves to be truly great ambassadors for Barnard Castle and can be proud of themselves.

Afterwards, managers, Lewis and Alan paid tribute to their squad.

They said the team had shown a great attitude and will to succeed. When the dust has settled this season will live long in the memory.