Mansfield Town’s under-19s were made to rue missed chances as Huddersfield scored two first-half goals to secure a 2-1 win at RH Academy on Saturday.
Terriers' striker Hazeem Bakre and midfielder Hakeem Sandah found the back of the net to put the visitors 2-0 up at the break.
Mansfield netted a consolation when substitute attacker Louis Bonser was only on the pitch for a matter of minutes to score in the 71st minute.
The hosts had an array of opportunities in the opening exchanges but were unable to convert them into goals.
One of the main chances fell to inform striker McKeal Abdullah thanks to a superbly weighted ball over the Terriers’ back-line by right-back Taylor Anderson but Abdullah fired wide of Michael Acquah’s goal.
Huddersfield took the lead on 25 minutes as a deep cross from the right-hand side saw Bakre rise highest to head home and break the deadlock.
Two minutes later, the Terriers doubled their advantage as Hakeem Sandah found himself one-on-one with Stags’ shot-stopper Louie Turner as he placed his effort into the back of the net.
Following a Huddersfield corner, the hosts had a brilliant opportunity to score on 38 minutes thanks to a rapid counter attack with attacker Jakub Kruszynski at the heart of it but ultimately draged his shot wide.
Mansfield came out looking a much brighter side in the second-half and won a free-kick on the edge of the Terriers’ area just minutes after the restart. Anderson’s effort was well hit and heading for the bottom corner but was saved well by ‘keeper Acquah.
Both sides made their first changes of the game six minutes into the second-half as the defensive minded Lewis Warnaby replaced midfielder Bailey Hamilton for the young Stags and Joseph Johnson replaced attacker Joshua Jackson for the visitors.
Full-back Elliot Hartmann, the 15-year-old, was also replaced by Tyler Whyle on 55 minutes. Regular starting left-back Darien Wauchope moved into his preferred position following the change after starting the game at centre-back.
Mansfield’s Kruszynski found himself with a couple of good opportunities couldn't convert any of his chances in the early stages of the second-half.
Today’s captain for the hosts, Taylor Anderson, had one of the best efforts of the game as the ball fell nicely for the full-back inside Huddersfield’s box but his shot went just wide of the post.
With 20 minutes left to play, Louis Bonser replaced Jakub Kruszynski as the Stags looked to inject new attacking energy into the game.
The amber and blue were rewarded for the change just minutes later as Bonser guided a brilliant header into the back of the visitors’ net to half the deficit.
Abdullah had a superb chance to level the game with eight minutes left to play as Anderson whipped the ball towards the front-post and the Mansfield striker looked certain to score the equalising goal, though his flick landed the wrong side of the post.
The home side piled on the pressure in the closing stages of the game but unfortunately couldn’t find the goal to bring them level.
MANSFIELD TOWN: Turner, Anderson, Whelan, Wauchope, Hartmann (Whyle 55), Carter, Flanagan, Hamilton (Warnaby 51), Kokkinos, Kruszynski (Bonser 70), Abdullah (Colton-Balogun 84)
UNUSED SUB: Leech
Huddersfield Town: Acquah, Mrisho, Weston, Parker, Sheppard, Helliwell, Sandah (Fletcher 62), Okuwa, Bakre, Jackson (Johnson 51), Sanusi
UNUSED SUBS: Hurl, Vost
REFEREE: Robert Pealing