Wednesday’s under-18s exited the FA Youth Cup in a 2-1 fifth round defeat to Blackburn Rovers at Ewood Park this evening.
After a great run to this stage of the competition, it was always going to be a tough test against a side from a higher level of the academy set-up and who currently sit top of the under-18s Premier League, but it was Wednesday who shocked their hosts after just four minutes, going in front when Leojo Davidson’s effort from outside the box took a big deflection to beat home keeper Felix Goddard.
However, the home side soon began to dominate and Wednesday were dealt a blow when captain Caelen Kilheeney limped off on the half-hour mark following a strong challenge.
Harry Leonard then hit the Wednesday bar and, just as it looked as though we would go into the interval with a 1-0 lead, Rovers grabbed an equaliser when Harrison Wood’s effort beat Jack Hall in the Owls goal.
Hall twice came to the rescue with saves at the start of the second half but the home side’s pressure finally paid off just before the hour when Patrick Gamble headed Blackburn in front.
Bailey-Tye Cadamarteri tested Goddard in a rare Wednesday attack with 15 minutes remaining, while Hall produced further excellent stops to prevent Blackburn adding to their lead in the closing stages, and while the home progressed to the next round, the Hillsborough youngsters could reflect on an outstanding achievement in the competition.