Eardley (18), Lyon (29), Brophy (51), Watt (57), Davidson O.G. (76) – Warnock (44)
Morton Under-20s produced a five-star performance at home to Clyde last night as they registered their third consecutive Development League West victory.
Goals from Ben Eardley, Reece Lyon, Kieran Brophy, Gavin Watt, and a Robbie Davidson own goal saw the Ton record their second 5-1 win over the Bully Wee this term.
Eardley got the ball rolling on 18 minutes, showing real determination to slide in and get on the end of Scott Miller’s low cross from the left, forcing the ball past Clyde keeper Matt Craig.
Midfielder Reece Lyon celebrated his 18th birthday on Wednesday, and he extended the celebrations by scoring his side’s second goal of the evening.
It was in the 29th minute that he took a potshot at goal with is left foot from 25 yards that found the net after taking a slight deflection and spinning inside the right-hand post.
Lee Kilday and Conor Pepper continued their comebacks from lengthy injuries with 76-minute runouts, and the club captain came close to finding the net with a header from a Jack Purdue corner that just flashed wide.
Despite Ton dominating the half, the Bully Wee scored a late goal to change the complexion of the game, Lewis Warnock bundling over the line after Daniel Farrell had parried Ronan Sweeney’s curled effort.
The Greenock side came back out for the second half with the bit between their teeth, and the woodwork came to Clyde’s rescue within a minute of the restart.
Frontman Alexander Easdale unleashed a powerful, rising half-volley with his left foot and keeper Craig was forced to stretch every sinew to touch the ball up onto the crossbar.
Director of youth Anderson had elected to make a change at the break, bringing on Under-17s midfielder Brophy for Purdue.
And the 17-year-old made his mark shortly after his introduction, showing tremendous technique to meet Eardley’s fierce cross from the right with a hooked volley that flashed past Craig into the net.
It was substitute Brophy’s first goal at Under-20 level, and youth academy team-mate Watt matched the milestone in the 57th minute.
The Scottish schoolboy international popped up at the back post to place Reece Lyon’s precise low cross from the right into the net from close range.
Morton were getting a great deal of joy down the right, and another Eardley delivery from that flank caused chaos in the Clyde box.
Visiting defender Robbie Davidson attempted to cut out the cross at the near post but only succeeded in turning the ball into his own net.
Ruaridh Langan thought he had made it a round half dozen on 85 minutes when he tapped in on the line, but his celebrations were cut short after spotting the stand-side assistant’s flag raised for offside.
It was Eardley’s fine left-footed shot that had been tipped onto the inside of the right post by the fingertips of Craig and rolled across the line into Langan’s path.
The 18-year-old had put in a fine showing at right midfield but blotted his copy book in the last minute when he was shown a straight red card for a late tackle on Clyde’s trialist substitute wearing the No. 23 shirt.
However, a late dismissal could not take the shine off what was an impressive second-half performance and another fine three points for the Ton teens.
6. Trialist [Pepper] 2. Kilday 4. Watt 3. Strapp
7. Eardley 5. Langan (c) 8. R. Lyon 11. Purdue
10. Easdale 9. Miller
Subs used: 18. Brophy (for Purdue, 24), 14. Anderson (for Kilday, 76), 17. Rodgers (for Pepper, 76), 19. J. Lyon (for R. Lyon, 84), and 15. Duffy (for Miller, 84).
Subs not used: 12. Durham, 20. Coyle.
Sent Off: Eardley (90).
Images: Gary Bradley