Darland's football boys are a class act as they become Welsh Schools champions


Staff reporter (Leader Live)

DARLAND High School's u14s side lifted the Welsh Schools Shield after a stunning 4-1 win over Swansea's Olchfa Secondary in the final.

A fine attacking performance at The New Saints’ Park Hall stadium saw Darland net all four goals in the first half to all but secure the trophy.

Iwan Roberts put the Rossett side ahead with a superb half-volley from 25 yards out to give the Olchfa keeper no chance.

James Smith-Morgan struck from close range to double Darland’s advantage, before a superb free-kick by Morgan Thomas-Sadler made it 3-0.

 Harry Fuller netted a fourth shortly before the interval.

Emerging after the break with nothing to lose, Olchfa pulled a goal back soon after the restart to give themselves a glimmer of hope.

But there was to be no fightback as Darland showed their defensive mettle to close the game out and lift the trophy.

The victory capped a memorable cup run for the Rossett school, who overcame Mold Alyn in the opening round, before beating Aber Conwy to  reach the quarter-finals.

There the Rossett-based side beat Castell Alun on penalties to reach the semi-final, where a spirited fightback secured a dramatic 3-2 win over Aberystwyth side Penglais.

The team’s coach Andy Newland hailed his side’s performance, saying: “I thought we were excellent in the opening half hour of the game. We started quickly and took control after some fantastic individual and team goals.

“Overall we were deserved winners and there’s a lot of pride among the team and around the whole school after this win.

“Our head teacher Peter Agnew has been very supportive of the team’s efforts throughout this competition – allowing them time off study to travel and compete in these games where necessary.

“We’re are really proud of how the boys have progressed in this competition after some brilliant performances. They have represented the school superbly both on and off the pitch.”

Saturday’s Inter Schools event also saw finals contested across three other age categories with wins  for Monmouth, Whitchurch and Caernarfon schools.

Darland team: Sam Burke; Ryan Williams; Nathan Roberts; Ethan Churchill; Matthew Marshall; Iwan Roberts; Harry Fuller; Sam Williams; Joel Edwards; Morgan Thomas-Sadler; James Smith; Alfie Lythgoe; Josh Venables; Kai Jones.

See full story in the Leader

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