FC Rangers take Blackpool and District Youth Football League title and Poulton Town take plaudits from draw

FC Rangers Under-16s completed a league and Hogan Cup double in the Blackpool and District Youth Football League, clinching the title with a 1-1 draw away to Poulton Town.

Thursday, 24th June 2021, 12:30 pm

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Rangers manager Steve Jackson admitted Poulton were the better team on the day at Thornton Sports Centre, where they could take satisfaction from being the only team all season to take a point against the champions.

George Wharton gave Rangers the lead only for centre-half Sean Davies to come off the bench after injury and head the equaliser for Poulton with 10 minutes remaining.

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Action from the game between FC Rangers Under-16 and Poulton Town at Thornton Cleveleys Sports Centre

Unbeaten Rangers applied late pressure but the hosts were good value for their point and double-winning boss Jackson paid tribute to both sides.

He said: “We played as though we had won the league already, which isn’t like us, but Poulton posed more problems for us than any other team this season and gave us the best game.”

The title race had looked destined to go to the wire, with a possible decider between FC Rangers and Poulton FC on the upcoming final weekend. However, the latter’s defeat by St Annes Yellows saw FC Rangers crowned with a game to spare.

Jackson added: “We’ve conceded eight goals all season and scored 96, and that’s without an out-and-out striker and the goals shared between 14 players, so the lads deserve full credit. They have been absolutely brilliant – the best group I’ve had in 20 years.”

FC Rangers (from left): Back row, Jack Murphy, George Wharton, Warren Meek, Cal Hardingham-Clarke.Kaiser Mercer, Roman Holden, Jack Huartson, Jacob Cleary and Stephen Forbes; Front row, Lewis Fenton, Will Parkinson, Max Webster, Bobby Roske, Matty Sillett and Harvey Fenton.

Poulton Town manager Steve Malone said: “It was a tight game against a very good side, and we had a couple of the better chances until the final few minutes, which were a bit like the Alamo.

“But we’ve had a good season after a slow start and we play for runners-up spot in our final game against Wyre.”

Malone named all-action midfielder Max Carter as his side’s man of the match, while centre-back Will Parkinson stood out for FC Rangers.

Summing up the season, Jackson concluded: “Thanks to the players and parents for all their efforts, and to the league and committee for a great season. We look forward to picking up the trophy on Saturday.

Poulton Town (from left): Back row, Alec Davies Ward, Thomas Powl, Matt Pearson, Joe Barton, Sean Davies Ward, Maddox Jones, Liam Birchall, Dario Pertica, Jack Ong, Alex Bartholomew and John Bull. Front, Tom Nassari, Regan Malone, Max Calter, Archie Addison, Ollie Hulme and Ted Balshaw.

“Thanks also to Blackpool Council’s parks department because Boundary Park has been great. They take massive pride in the pitches and don’t get the thanks for great facilities.”

Look out for our match picture gallery online later today

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