Hastings reach national semi-finals

The Hastings United academy team celebrates after scoring against Wealdstone. Picture courtesy Joe Knight
The Hastings United academy team celebrates after scoring against Wealdstone. Picture courtesy Joe Knight

Hastings United Football Club’s academy side has reached the semi-finals of the National League U19 Alliance League Cup.

United continued their remarkable run in the national competition with a 2-0 quarter-final victory at home to Wealdstone yesterday (Wednesday) afternoon.

Hastings United academy on the ball against Wealdstone. Picture courtesy Joe Knight

Hastings United academy on the ball against Wealdstone. Picture courtesy Joe Knight

Jordan Harley and Davide Rodari scored in the opening half-hour as Hastings joined Chester FC, Boreham Wood Blues and Halifax Town in the semi-final draw. The final, incidentally, will be played at the home of League One club Walsall.

A strong Hastings side included first team regulars Rodari, Ansu Janneh, Adam Lovatt and Tom Climpson, as well as players who have appeared occasionally for the first team such as Harley, Zach Kieran and Jamie Fielding.

First team manager and academy manager Chris Agutter said: “It’s a fantastic achievement by everyone at the club and all the work that goes on at the academy.

“I think it’s worth mentioning that we had eight first team players playing for the 19s today. If we can’t, as a town, get excited over what’s happening, I don’t know what will.

“For the first time in a long time I think you can see there’s a plan at the club and a pathway for young, talented local players that are coming through.

“Under your Davide Rodari, Adam Lovatt and co, you’ve got another group of players. I think it’s a reflection of how far the club’s come. Rather than it being a team in terms of the first team, it’s now a club.”

The development squad’s scheduled game at home to Lewes on Monday night was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.

Benefit from an ongoing discount on your Observer by joining our voucher membership scheme. Once you’ve subscribed, we’ll send you dated vouchers which can be exchanged for your paper at any news outlet. To save money on your Observer, simply click here (www.localsubsplus.co.uk)