By Yankuba Jallow and Nelson Manneh
The serial winners of Penyem Tournament, Under 23 Football Club last weekend surrendered the title to the U-17s on post-match penalties.
Penyem Youth and Sports Development Committee annual village tournament comes following successfully staging of two cups, – the League and the Knockout.
In a previous group stage meeting, the two sides fired blanks. Saturday’s game also ended on a similar note albeit on a one-all stalemate on regular time before the U-17s clinched the silverware on 4-2 spot-kicks.
U-17 first scored in the 32nd minute of the first half through Ebou Faal before the U-23s equalised via new entrant Demba Jarju in the 77thminute.
The U23 club has been dominating Penyem football over the years but the young U17 boys applied the brakes to the streak. The U23 were the winners of both Penyem Knockout Cup and Super Cup but were denied the trophy by the U17 boys when the U-23s sent Old Hands packing, putting three unanswered goals past them with Yusupha Gibba, Nfansu Sanyang and Mustapha Kolley doing the damage.
Amadou Jatta, the head coach for U17 said he has been encouraging his boys to train hard in order to win the finals.
‘The U23 are stronger than us when it comes to physique but we defeated them through tactics because I used two defensive midfielders in the match to stop all balls and reduce pressure on my backline,’ he said.
‘We were ready and determined to win the League Cup despite the big name U23s,’ he said.
Mustapha Nyassi for the U23 side admitted that his boys lost the game on low performance but commended them for the beautiful football they displayed.
“They deserve the victory because they have dominated us from the first half and their tactics worked,’ he said.