Young Canaries beat Southend to win BC Worldwide Challenge 2012
NORWICH City's Under-18s secured their first silverware of the season on Sunday after being crowned the BC Worldwide Challenge 2012 winners with a 2-1 win over Southend United U18s in the final.
Seedy Njie had put the defending champions ahead, but a resilient City showed their quality by hitting back with goals from Carlton Morris and Cameron Norman to secure the victory, having overcome Millwall 4-1 in Saturday's semi-final.
The tournament, which was moved from Southend's Roots Hall to the Boots and Laces training ground, saw City, Southend United, Millwall, and Colchester United all compete to win the prize.
Southend disposed of Colchester 2-1 in the semi-final to set up a clash with the Canaries, and got off to a bright start in the final as Njie gave them an 11th minute lead.
The striker was picked out by Jack Edwards on the right flank, and showed great strength to hold off a challenge before rifling the ball into the top corner, making it 1-0 to the hosts.
City responded to the set-back well, with midfielder Cameron McGeehan's powerful header rattling the woodwork after he rose to meet Josh Murphy's corner.
The breakthrough finally came for the Canaries in the 31st minute courtesy of first-year scholar Morris, as he broke clear of the defence and hit a well-placed shot beyond Blues 'keeper Ted Smith to level the scores.
Some good play and constant pressure from City again paid dividends on 36 minutes as versatile midfielder Norman completed the turnaround with an angled header at the far post after Morris' looping cross found its target.
Southend did attempt an quick respond through Njie, whose faint touch on Pinnock's dangerous corner kick wasn't enough to equalise for the Blues as City went into the break with a deserved 2-1 lead.
With the final in the balance, Southend started the second half on the front foot, and City needed goalkeeper Arie Hammann to be at his best to deny first Michael Ademuliyi, and then to turn the ball behind after a deflection from Pinnock's corner took it goal wards.
Despite Southend's Payne hitting the post with a free-kick and missing the target with a shot from Agyakwa's cross as the game entered the later stages, City were able to see out the game and win 2-1 - securing what was a well deserved tournament victory, and a fantastic way to start their season.
Southend United: Smith, Jeffery, Hyams (Farrell 41), Edwards (Barlow 56), Tatham (Snook 40+1), Banton, King (Twum 46 [Payne 61]), Bridge (Creary 41), Njie (Williams 41), Payne (Ademuliyi 35 [Agyakwa 73]), Pinnock (Mullings 46).
Subs not used: Ben Crickmay.
Norwich City: Hammann, Romhoum, Barker (Wyatt 59), McGeehan, Ramhoum, McFadden (Lokko 59), Norman (Browne 41), Hall-Johnson (Carroll 53), Morris (Norman 71), King (Hodd 53), Murphy (Hall-Johnson 68).
Subs not used: Joe Gill.