HALF-TIME: North End Youth 0 Burnley FC Youth 0.

HAVING missed out on the Youth Alliance League by a solitary point to rivals Preston North End, the young Clarets sought revenge in the Lancashire FA Youth Cup final.

Wednesday, 2nd May 2012, 8:09 pm

And at the interval Terry Pashley's side still have a chance at 0-0. The clash at Deepdale was always going to be a tough task, with former Claret Jamie Hoyland guiding the Lillywhites to 10 consecutive victories.

The fixture began at a laboured pace, with both teams intent on retaining possession. The Clarets worked the first opening of the half, Luke Gallagher's drilled cross into the box was met by Alex Mullin, though the winger miscued with time and space at his disposal.

Gallagher blazed over from distance moments later after dispossessing Naim El-Harrati in midfield but that acted as a wake-up call for North End. Brandon Zibaka, who bagged a brace against Oldham in the previous round, always looked capable of threatening with his frightening pace and the striker came close to opening the scoring, latching on to a long ball, cutting in to the area, only to be denied by a superb block from skipper Alex Coleman from close range.

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With the home side's pace, precision and penetration it was no surprise that they'd won the competition in three successive years, and with Luke Clark very impressionable in the middle of the park, orchestrating the tempo, they looked measured and organised.

After Coleman was booked, hacking down Samuel Ade Osobe, North End went close again. Zibaka chased another hopeful clearance in to the corner, crafted a route past full-back Luke Conlan and squared the ball to Clark on the edge of the box who forced Josh Cook in to a smart save at the foot of his post with a venomous, low drive. And soon after Zibaka found the side-netting with a clever half-volley on the turn.

The Clarets tried to involve the wide men with long, often overhit, passes in to the corner but when the ball was played on the ground North End's rearguard looked penetrable. And Shay McCartan was unfortunate after piercing through the home side's backline and lifting the ball over keeper Jordan Watson, though his clipped effort span away from goal.

That would be the only time Watson would be called in to action, but the Clarets continued to press. Ade Osobe felled Gallagher on the edge of the box, finding himself in the referee's book in the process, and a well-worked free-kick routine saw Archie Love slice wide. And Steven Hewitt was next to miss the target after trading passes with Gallagher.

At half time it's Preston North End 0 Burnley 0.