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Junior Navy Blues crowned champions

Words: ACFC Media

Saturday 16 December 2017

Picture: Phototek

AUCKLAND, New Zealand - The Junior Navy Blues thrash a game Tasman United 5-2 to clinch the club's fifth National Youth League title at Kiwitea Street today.

The Junior Navy Blues rush towards the championship began inside the first two minutes when Dalton Wilkins fired home. Jack Anderson doubled the lead shortly after to send the visitors reeling.

Tullamore MacFadyen halved the deficit midway through the first half only for Leon van den Hoven to restore the Junior Navy Blues two goal cushion six minutes after the break.

Tasman United remained hot on the heels of the hosts when Alex Connor-McLean pulled another goal back from the penalty spot within a minute.

The visitors goalkeeper Scott Morris was in outstanding form as he denied van den Hoven a second then cleared another effort off the line.

Justin Bailey - back from his suspension after being ordered off in the win over Eastern Suburbs AFC - gave the Junior Navy Blues breathing space when he hammered home the fourth with just three minutes left to play.

At the other end Connor-McLean then drew an important save from Cameron Brown only for Bailey to nab a second and his team's fifth to put the icing on the cake for Auckland City FC.

The victory gives Auckland City FC its first National Youth League title since 2014 and its fifth since 2007.

It is also the fourth time Auckland City FC has won the title and remained undefeated in the course of a National Youth League campaign following similar title victories in 2012-13 (9 games undefeated), 2013-14 (11 games undefeated) and 2007 (7 games undefeated).

Canterbury United have a game in hand on the Junior Navy Blues but with the tie breaker determined primarily by teams' head-to-head record, the Dragons can finish no higher than second following their 4-2 defeat to the champions on November 4 at the Croatian Club.


Match Result
National Youth League
Saturday 16 December 2017
Auckland City FC 5 (Wilkins 2, Anderson 19', van den Hoven 51', Bailey 87', 90+3')
Tasman United 2 (MacFadyen 24', Connor-McLean 52'-pen)
HT: 2-1

AC: 1. Cameron BROWN (GK), 2. Robert TIPELU, 4. Dino BOTICA, 5. Hugo KIDD, 8. Dalton WILKINS, 9. Jack ANDERSON, 10. Leon van den HOVOEN, 16. Justin BAILEY, 17. Sione FA'APOI, 21. Callum McNEILL.

SUBS: 6. Oscar SPRAGG, 7. Antonio BONKOVICH, 13. Joshua JONES, 18. James DUNN (GK), 19. Thomas DRILLIEN


National Youth League - Honours Board
2018 - Auckland City FC
2017 - Hamilton Wanderers
2016 - Team Wellington
2015 - Nelson-Marlborough Falcons
2014 - Auckland City FC
2013 - Auckland City FC
2012 - Canterbury United
2011 - Waitakere United
2010 - Canterbury United
2009 - Auckland City FC
2008 - Waitakere United
2007 - Auckland City FC
2006 - Capital Football
2005 - Capital Football
2004 - North Harbour
2003 - Capital Football
2002 - Auckland Football

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