Bluecoat and Emmanuel battle on
THREE Nottingham schools are getting closer to winning a national trophy in knockout competitions organised by the English Schools' FA.
Bluecoat U16s and Nottingham Emmanuel U14s have reached the last 16 of their knock-out competition, while Bluecoat U15s are through to the last 32.
A total of 733 teams entered the U16 Boys. Bluecoat entertained Nene Park Academy (Peterborough) in round six, having reached the last 32, but were hit when three players had to withdraw due to injury or illness.
Bluecoat soaked up the early pressure and, in the 60th minute, they got their reward for patience and discipline as Connor Gilbey broke the deadlock with a stunning 30-yard shot.
Two minutes later Offrande Zanzala increased the lead as he powered through the defence to score a superb individual goal.
The visitors quickly pulled one goal back, when a shot was deflected past the Bluecoat keeper. Zanzala soon restored the two-goal advantage.
With only ten seconds remaining, Nene Park converted a penalty, but the Bluecoat boys held on for a great 3-2 victory and now have another home tie against the English Martyr RC School (Leicester) on Friday.
The Nottingham Emmanuel boys also had to face Nene Park Academy at home in their round six fixture in the ESFA "Premier League" U14 Boys' Cup. This proved to be another very hard-fought game. Two goals from Adrian Lang and one from Zydane Richardson meant that the score was 3-3 with only minutes of normal time remaining. Extra time seemed certain until the Emmanuel right back, Joshua Wilkinson, struck the ball from 35 yards into the left hand corner of the net. Emmanuel will have home advantage in their round seven match against either Wolfreton School of South Holderness Technical College (both for East Riding).
Bluecoat had to travel to play the Frederick Gent School (Amber Valley) in the ESFA U15 Boys' Cup and returned home with a 2-1 win.
In the second half, Bluecoat raised the pace of their game and were soon 1-0 up thanks to a powerful header by Alex Cover. The home team responded with a well-worked equaliser but, ten minutes later, Immaan Samuels fired home to make it 2-1.
Bluecoat U15s are also fortunate to have received a home tie in round seven.
They were due to play South Hunsley High School (East Riding) on January 14, but the snow intervened and the match will be re-scheduled.