Mansfield Town's under 18s can move a point clear at the top of the EFL Youth Alliance with a victory against Hartlepool United at Clipstone's Worksop Van Hire Stadium this Friday (12.00pm kick-off).
A hard-fought draw against an experienced Doncaster Rovers side was a positive result for the Stags last time out and kept them in touch at the top of the North-East Division.
An early goal from striker Riley O'Sullivan was unfortunately cancelled out by Stags' centre-back Aiden Walker who turned the ball into his own net in stoppage time in the first-half.
Rovers had six players in the side who had already tasted first team football, and at times it showed. However, John Dempster's team were more than a match and had chances to clinch all three points.
After the game, Dempster was quick to praise his defenders who had helped Stags to a six-game unbeaten league run, with just one defeat from nine in all competitions.
Oldham Athletic stand between Stags and the top spot with one point separating the two teams but Mansfield have a game in hand and the superior goal difference.
Hartlepool's last win came in early October when they beat Morecambe 3-0. Since then they've played six, losing three and drawing three which sees Pools at the bottom of the league, 19 points behind Mansfield.
The Monkey Hangers have prospered in cup competitions, qualifying for the knock-out stages of the EFL Youth Alliance Cup by topping their group. They also reached the third round of the FA Youth Cup where they were beaten by Liverpool.
The last time both teams met was in September at Hartlepool's Victoria Park ground. The Stags took the spoils that day, winning 2-0.
Supporters are welcome to watch the encounter with food and beverages available. Car parking is also is free around the ground.
The address for this fixture is:
The Worksop Van Hire Stadium
Clipstone Road East