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Burnley’s youth team fell to a 3-0 defeat this morning against Wrexham in our last home game of the season in the Youth Alliance League. It is a defeat that has condemned us to a finish next to bottom of the league, our worse ever finish since the league was first introduced.

It’s been a disastrous season and I would like to think that there would be an inquest at the very highest level at Turf Moor, and that’s in the boardroom. We went out of the FA Youth Cup to the Metropolitan Police and in the league, since the academy’s operations manager Graham Lancashire told us that it didn’t matter if we lost every game, we’ve gone on to lose eight on the bounce in which we have conceded 25 goals.

Work continues at Gawthorpe

Work continues at Gawthorpe

Today’s game featured only six of the current youth squad, all of them first years, with the rest coming from those who will be starting their scholarships next season. It would be unfair, and very wrong, to be pointing any fingers in their direction and it can only be hoped that they get a much better environment to work in from next season.

Things have certainly worsened since the departures of Martin Dobson and Vince Overson in the autumn of 2011 and the effect of the loss of Terry Pashley and Andy Farrell with the youth team this season is there for all to see.

We keep hearing noises from such as chairman Mike Garlick as to how important youth development and bringing through our own players is going to be. I’ve never seen him at a youth game and wonder just how much or how little he actually understands before making those comments.

We fell behind to two goals late in the first half. We hadn’t done too badly but Wrexham did deserve the lead. In the second half they were by far the better side and scored again. We did get a penalty in the 90th minute for a handball on the line which saw the Wrexham player sent off. I’m not sure he did handle it but in any case Nashé Chakwana saw his spot kick saved.

On the Gawthorpe front, the work continues. The pitch I last saw the youth team playing on is now being re-done. The new desso first team pitch is underway and the work on the building continues. I do have to say, with all this work, there was a very rural smell down there this morning.

Our team today was: Connor King, Leighton Egan, James Clarke, Scott Wilson, Kwasinkosi Mpofu, Olatunde Bayode, Miles Fenton, Mark Howarth, Tyler Shrimpton, Dwight McNeil, Nashé Chakwana.

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