By Ryan Plant
Wolves 2 (Samuels 29’, 54’) Everton 0
A second brace in as many games from Austin Samuels earned Wolves Under-18s an impressive 2-0 victory against Everton at Compton Park.
Goals in both halves from Samuels gave Darren Ryan’s side a deserved victory after a much-improved performance from Tuesday’s 5-3 loss to Derby County to end the Premier League U18 North season on a high.
Wolves defended well from the outset and controlled the majority of the possession using a new three-at-the-back system, aided by the return of Dion Sanderson in the centre of defence to captain the side.
Wing-back Callum Thompson created the game’s first chance with an inviting cross that would have been tapped home by Samuels but for a vital interception by Ethan Warnock.
At the other end, Everton looked dangerous on the counter-attack and it took a goal-line clearance from Sanderson to stop them going ahead from Mackenzie Hunt’s volley.
Wolves, though, continued to dominate the game and soon went ahead.
Not long after Thompson saw a shot saved by Nico Defreitas from close range, Samuels fired Wolves in front. He latched onto a loose ball, shrugged off the visiting captain, Elliot Richards, and scored into the bottom-left corner from the edge of the area to deservedly put Wolves in front on the half hour.
Taylor Perry had the final chance of the half with a volley from outside of the area but Defreitas was equal to it.
HT - Wolves 1-0 Everton
Everton, though, began the second half much brighter; almost straight after the restart, striker Ellis Simms had a free shot at goal from the edge of the area, forcing a good save from Jackson Smith in the Wolves goal.
Moments later, defender Lewis Richards made a goal-saving tackle as Tom Warren shaped to shoot; the visitors were soon made to regret their missed chances as Samuels doubled Wolves’ lead.
He pounced onto a loose pass from Richards on the halfway line and drove at Mike Collins, using Thompson as a decoy in a two-on-one to sprint into the penalty area and finish. He had a chance to seal his hat-trick when Luke Cundle found him on the penalty spot but he could only shoot wide with his weaker left foot.
Chances also came and went for late substitutes Taylor Townsend and Ray O’Sullivan, but a 2-0 win nonetheless against third-placed Everton is a result to be proud of for Ryan’s side - a great way to finish the league season.
FT - Wolves 2-0 Everton