Match Reports

FA Youth Cup report | Birmingham City U18s 0-6 Luton Town U18s

Luton Town Under 18s secured their spot in the Fourth Round of the FA Youth Cup with a superb 6-0 win against Birmingham City at St Andrew’s Stadium.


Alan McCormack’s side transferred their sensational league form into the prestigious youth cup and booked their place in the next stage with a controlled, clinical performance, progressing past the Third Round for the first time since 2016.

The young Hatters have lost just once in 14 league matches so far this season and that confidence translated on the pitch as they made a strong start and put Birmingham to the sword from the first minute.

Jake Burger – one of five starters who featured in last season’s FA Youth Cup defeat against Burnley – tested Bradley Mayo from range inside the opening 10 minutes but the goalkeeper was equal to it.

The energetic Jayden Luker was the creative force for Alan McCormack’s side and created a good opportunity for Oli Lynch to get his head on a teasing cross but for resilient defending from the home side.

Lynch, however, would not be stopped a second time and gave Luton a deserved lead after 14 minutes. Left-back Joe Johnson produced a superb delivery and Lynch guided the ball past Mayo with an impressive header.

It was almost two when Zack Nelson found space in the Birmingham penalty area, though his low effort was saved by the home number one.

16-year-old Johnson, who had set-up the opener, had eyes for a goal of his own midway through the first half after finding himself with a shooting chance on the right side of the pitch but his curling effort was matched by a good stop from Mayo.

The Hatters had a brilliant opportunity to double their advantage after Millar Matthews-Lewis threaded the ball through to Lynch. Unselfishly, the striker squared the ball across goal to Nelson but neither he nor Luker could muster a shot on target.

Just as the chance seemed to pass itself by, Jacob Pinnington’s cross was brilliantly controlled by Luker, who drove towards the by-line and his deflected cross was headed into an empty net by Nelson minutes before half-time.

Birmingham undoubtedly had hopes of regrouping and getting themselves back into the contest but those plans were ripped apart inside the first 20 seconds of the restart after Nelson scored his second and Town’s third goal of the match.

Matthews-Lewis and Lynch were both denied by an impressive Mayo double save but the keeper was unable to keep out a third goal-bound attempt by the attacking midfielder.

His hat-trick attempt seven minutes later was thanks to Lynch’s work in the penalty area although it was deflected wide on this occasion.

Following three Birmingham substitutions, Town were on the hunt for another goal and following neat combination play between Luker and Burger, they almost found it.

The home side had rarely threatened throughout the contest, however Ben Beresford did have space and time as he tested Sam Bentley from range but the Luton number one was equal to it.

Three minutes later, Luton did have a fourth and it was arguably the pick of the bunch. Archie Heron was the architect, after combining with Nelson he played a well-timed ball through to Johnson who fired into the roof of the net.

Four soon became five and Nelson had the opportunity to secure his hat-trick from the spot after Matthews-Lewis was brought down, albeit appearing to be just outside the area. Nevertheless, Nelson seized his chance from the spot, sending Mayo the wrong way.

There was further drama when Engwau Oduka was shown a red card by referee Ben Cooke for a late tackle on substitute Rio Martucci.

And there was even time for a sixth goal of the evening for the side that have scored 59 times in 14 league matches so far this season. Lynch’s goal-bound attempt was deflected in off defender Zach Willis.

The Under 18s will now face the winner of Tottenham Hotspur U18s or Queens Park Rangers U18s at Kenilworth Road which is scheduled to be played before Saturday 21st January 2023.

Birmingham City: Mayo; Pendleton, Mazwi (Ruiz-Rente 65’), Willis, Carsley (Ogor 57’), Oduka, Williams (Oni 57’), Home, Beresford, Rushton, Tattum.

Subs not used: Brooks, Ellis.

Yellows: Carsley (28’), Willis (56’)

Luton Town: Bentley; Pinnington, Bateson, Vickers, Johnson; Burger, Heron (Martucci 74’), Luker, Nelson (Lorentzen-Jones 86’); Matthews-Lewis (Odegah 79’), Lynch.

Subs not used: Hockey, Kayibanda, Giwa, Scott.

Goals: Lynch (14’), Nelson (42’, 46’, 79’), Johnson (72’), Willis (85 og’)

Referee: Ben Cooke

Related Content

  1. 01
  2. 02
  3. 03