Essex Cassells Under 16s Cup Final

AFC Hornchurch 0

Tilbury 3

FOOTBALL: EARLY goals from Ruben Duarte and Harry Pearson set Tilbury Under 16s on their way to a historic Essex Cassells Cup triumph over the teenagers from AFC Hornchurch.

The third Tilbury FC goal came in the second half from the boot of Bradleigh Curtin.

The result of the final at final at New Lodge delighted Tilbury’s manager James Imber.

He said: “We started on the front foot and played with pace and power, which Hornchurch struggled to deal with.”

A spirited second-half fight-back from Hornchurch could’ve brought the Urchins back into the tie, but Curtin sealed the match and made sure the silverware went to the Dockers. Having become Essex champions for their age group, James is now considering the future path of his side: “We’ll go into Under 18s next season and hopefully a few of the lads will push into the Tilbury Reserves and then the first team. There’s certainly enough ability in the squad.”

Tilbury’s goals came in the ninth and 11th minutes. Duarte beat the Hornchurch defence and clipped a fine angled finish into the far corner. The second came when Pearson burst through and slipped a low shot beyond Urchins goalkeeper Connor McCann.

Tilbury settled the contest on 64 minutes as a left-flank cross evaded the Hornchurch defence and was side-footed home by Curtin at the far post. And the trophy went to Tilbury for the first time.

AFC Hornchurch: Connor McCann, Harry Gibbs, Fred Houseago, Daniel Boyce, Jack Hadley, Frankie Parlour, Hamza Lounis, George Farmer, George O’Connor, Harry Catherall, Charlie Mills-Baldock. Substitutes (repeated): Ross Dipple, Billy Page, Jack Edmonds, George Booker.

Tilbury: Alfie Cobden, Roche Bailey, Ollie Hanlon, Jake Chaplin, Jake Tansel, Will Baldry, Harry Pearson, Bradleigh Curtin, Ruben Duarte, Charlie Spalding, Reiss Curtin. Substitutes (repeated): Shane Willie, Ryley Fuller, Harry Higgins.