By Dan King
The new season has not even begun yet, but Newcastle United have already lifted a trophy.
The club's Under-16 team won the inaugral Total Football Show Academy Tournament at Lilleshall National Sports Centre in Shropshire after beating Wolves 2-1 in the final.
Jordan Storey's late goal - a composed finish under pressure - saw the young Magpies, coached by Liam Bramley, return home triumphant.
The competition, which took place last weekend, was sponsored by Physicool and PortableFloodlights.com and supported by Puma and was one of the tournaments for Academy and grassroots clubs incorporated into The Total Football Show, an exhibition of football products and services.
In the Academy Tournament, Newcastle started off with a 2-2 draw in their opening group game against Peterborough, with Greg Olley and Liam Smith the scorers.
Rhys Harbottle and a Jonathyn Quinn brace helped United to a 3-1 win in their second game against Walsall, before qualification to the semi-final stage was secured with a 3-2 win over Stoke in the third group fixture. Quinn was again on target alongside Phil Smith and Jake Hall.
Reading were the semi-final opponents and Olley's goal proved to the decisive, putting Newcastle into the final against Wolves. Olley scored again but the game looked destined for penalties until Storey's intervention with two minutes remaining in a hard-fought game.
In the academy tournament, Newcastle started the group games with a 2-2 draw against Peterborough, followed by beating Walsall 3-1 and Stoke City 3-2, to progress to the semi-finals where a 1-0 win over Reading, set up a final against Wolves.
The game was poised at 1-1 with both teams having chances to win the game, with the game appearing likely to go to penalties, the young Magpies successfully converted an opportunity with less than two minutes remaining.
Coach Bramley said: "We were over the moon to win the tournament. Some of the team had been involved in winning the Nike Cup a year ago but for a lot of the team it was their first real taste of competition.
"The lads started quite slowly, but as the tournament went on they grew in confidence and got better and better. We defended much more solidly towards the end and also looked like we could score goals.
"Against Peterborough in particular, we looked a bit vulnerable defensively but we kept a clean sheet in the semi-final and did well to beat a good Wolves team, so it was great to win the cup and I'm proud of all the players."
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