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SSFCIA close the gap on the top after Mansfield Victory

Updated: Apr 26

South Shields International Academy defeated Mansfield Town at 1st Cloud Arena 2-0 in an intense National Football Youth League fixture. 

David Mighten led a strong-willed defense earning his seventh clean sheet of the year, while Jaiden Odle and Timothy Barney earned a tally on the score sheet.

This result meant the Mariners climbed the table to third, two points behind Macclesfield and eight points behind Chesterfield with three games in hand on both clubs. 

Adam Shaw, Head of the International Academy, believed the match was a tough result, but the footballing basics lead his team to victory. He said: “It was a scrappy start, a bit tense. 

“[Mansfield] were better than what we faced and the natural rhythms of the game and fitness came into play.

“Using our football knowledge was really key.”

The first half was difficult for Shields and Shaw said: “The lads reacted really well and had some very strong second half performances.”

This was the first time the academy got to play on the pitch and striker Tim Barney said the feeling was ecstatic. 

Isrrael Morales, a centre-back who made his first appearance for the club, said: “It was amazing. 

“It’s a privilege to play on a pitch like that and it brings about a bit of intensity.”

The Mariners will play their final away game against Tadcaster Albion United on Friday, before finishing the final five matches at home, including another match at 1st Cloud Arena against I2I Red on 10 May.

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