Matt Birchall scored twice as Bradford City Under-18s swept aside Burton Albion Under-18s, romping to a 3-1 victory at St George’s Park.
The Bantams started well and Birchall, who looked lively througout, came close to grabbing the opener after 15 minutes.
Connor Shanks cut infield on the left and opened a shot up for Birchall but he couldn’t find the top corner of the Burton goal.
Pressure mounted on the Brewers’ backline, however, and City were rewarded - in some style.
Kielen Adams found Eddy Prata lurking on the edge of the area. After shrugging off the defender, opening the ball up onto his right foot, the winger curled a sweet effort into the bottom-left corner.
One quickly became two as Birchall found the net with a stunning strike from outside the box. Jake Maltby’s pass through midfield found the talented number-10, who fizzed it past Burton goalkeeper Oliver Fairbrother.
City came agonisingly close to a third on the stroke of half-time, with Birchall again at the centre of the action.
The third came just eight minutes into the second period. Maltby’s pinpoint pass over the defence allowed Prata to run into the area.
Burton’s captain Lal Rueben failed in his attempt to wrestle the ball away but, in doing so, Birchall managed to place the ball under the keeper to make it 3-0.
Kielen Adams, who was called up to the first team for Tuesday’s Checkatrade Trophy clash with Everton Under-21s, came agonisingly close to a fourth for the visiting Bantams.
But the young Bantams were unable to make it three clean sheets from their last three, succumbing to late pressure in the 87th minute.
Jack Bromfield was able to put the ball past keeper Alfie Darke but his effort proved for little more than consolation as City ran out deserved winners.
BANTAMS: Alfie Darke; Hayden Smethurst (Dan Francis 82), Jorge Sikora, Finn Cousin-Dawson, Jeremie Milambo (c); Jake Maltby, Raecce Ellington, Matt Birchall (Dylan Drovi 85); Eddy Prata (Kian Scales 73), Connor Shanks (Wade Ripley 63), Kielen Adams (Dan Aitken 70).
GOAL SCORERS: Prata (15), Birchall (37, 53)
MAN OF THE MATCH: Birchall