Mansfield Town’s under 18s climbed to second position in the Football League Youth Alliance with a 2-1 victory over Oldham Athletic on Saturday.
Goals from Tom Marriott and Cain Smith helped the Stags overcome the Latics in Greater Manchester in what was a hard-fought encounter.
John Dempster’s men were rewarded for their bright start in the contest on 17 minutes when they took the lead. Oldham’s goalkeeper collided with his defender presenting Tom Marriott with the chance to pounce on the ball, take a couple of touches and convert with poise into the top corner of the net.
The hosts then brought the game back level just after half-time which prompted Dempster to introduce Devante Reittie after several months of absence through injury and he played a part as Mansfield ploughed on for the winner.
Soon after Reittie’s introduction, the Yellows hit what would turn out to be the winner with 15 minutes remaining. Tyler Johal and Tyler Blake worked well down the right-wing following a throw-in, and it was subsequently cut back for Cain Smith who buried it past the goalkeeper with conviction.
Marriott could’ve scored more with one notable effort crashing into the side-netting, but the Stags held out to keep up their fine form and climb the league ladder with top spot in their sights.
In their next Football League Youth Alliance fixture, Dempster’s youngsters host Grimsby Town on Saturday 05 December (11am kick-off).
STAGS’ XI: Wilson, Bloor, Ratcliffe, Harrison, Danquah, C Smith, Healey, Johal (Reittie 70’), Marriott, Blake, Hakeem.