Academy aces impress in USA

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The AFC Sudbury Academy marked a successful first year in existence with a trip to the USA to play six friendlies last month.

A party of 29 including players, staff and officials from the club flew out to Philadelphia for a seven-day tour which took in half a dozen matches against various opposition.

Brad Beevis netted four times and Ryan McNicholas twice as AFC got the tour off to a flyer with a 6-0 win against a youthful FC Revolution team.

The boys kept the winning run going with a 3-1 triumph over an older Revolution side, with the goals coming from Charlie Gilbert (two) and Jordan Blackwell.

Gilbert and Blackwell were among the goals in AFC’s third friendly, as the duo struck once each to complete a 2-1 win over the reserve side of Reading United AC.

Sudbury tasted their first defeat of the tour after their academy counterparts from Continental FC sealed a 2-0 victory.

A Gilbert brace and a second-half goal from Tyler French ensured the Yellows got back to winning ways with a 3-0 success in another game against a Reading reserve side.

AFC’s tour culminated with a 2-0 reverse against Junior Lone Star Under-23s.

The Sudbury Academy’s director of football and youth development, Danny Laws, labelled the tour as an ‘unbelievable experience.’

Laws, who is also the club’s reserve team manager, said: “It’s always difficult to blow your own trumpet but our academy is continuing to go from strength to strength.

“We’ve just completed our first year and there are exciting times ahead, with the growth over the summer seeing us double in size from 22 to 44 players in the academy.”

n AFC Sudbury Reserves were announced as the runners-up for the Integrity Award at the Thurlow Nunn League presentation evening held in Norwich last month.

n AFC Sudbury Under-18s lost 3-1 to Biggleswade Town in the Thurlow Nunn Youth League Championship play-off final, held at Diss Town FC.

n The week five AFC Gold winners are: £100 (335) B Beevis, AFC Academy; £10 (353) L Jordan, AFC Academy; £10 (194), Mrs K Middleditch, Brent Eleigh Rd, Lavenham.