Avro book place in Manchester Challenge Trophy Final
Tuesday 21st November 2017 @ 09:53 by Mark Phillip
Football Oldham Sports

Avro have booked their place in the Manchester Challenge Trophy Final after beating Heyside 3-0 on Saturday.

Louis Potts smashed home a hat-trick to set up a grand finale against East Manchester, who won the competition last season after a 4-0 triumph over Wythenshawe Town at Hyde United’s Ewen Fields Stadium.

Avro entered the game in high spirits having not lost a game all season, while Heyside had extended their unbeaten run to four games with a 5-2 victory over Bolton County the previous Saturday.

While the odds were stacked against them ahead of kick-off, Heyside gave a good account of themselves but were ultimately undone by a supreme Potts performance.

The 21-year-old gave his side a two-goal cushion before the half-time break and put the game beyond any doubt with a a third in the 60th minute.

Following the game, Potts spoke to Reporter Sport and hailed his team mates’ performance: “From a personal perspective, I’m buzzing with the result and the performance in general” he said.

“The team were unbelievable like they have been all season, and the mood around the team is great. We were all happy with the way we played and can’t wait for the final.”

Potts, who joined Avro during the summer, believes the squad has what it takes to claim the title this season – especially under player-manager James Hampson. He added: “James is a really good to work with, not just as a manager, but as a player on the pitch as well. He knows how to get through different scenarios during a game and his tactics are top quality.

“We’re 100% confident that the title will be ours at the end of the season.”

Although promotion is the key objective for Avro this season, Potts is also hoping to develop on a personal level as well.

Potts is happiest when playing a central attacking midfield role, although the former Bolton Wanderers player is happy to use his skills wherever they’re needed on the pitch. “I prefer to play in a central attacking midfield role, although I played right wing on Saturday” he said.

“I aim to play as best I can in every game, not just for myself, but for the team as a whole.

“I’ll also set myself targets in each game, whether that be scoring or creating opportunities for other players.”

Despite losing the tie, Heyside manager Matthew Wheelton believes his side had plenty of opportunities to take something from the match. He said:  “We conceded two soft goals inside the first ten minutes, but then we had three good chances before half-time. Their keeper saved two and we missed the target with the third. We then conceded on 60 minutes and the tie fizzled out.

“I’m disappointed that we didn’t make more of a game of it, but we’ve still all to play for in the league and Gilcryst Cup.”

Both sides return to action in the Manchester Premier League this weekend.

Heyside have a chance to return to winning ways with a home clash against Stockport Georgians, while Avro entertain Old Alts.

The visitors enter the clash rooted to the foot of the table, having failed to win a league game this season.

Of the 15 games played so far, Old Alts have drawn four and lost 11, conceding 47 goals in the process.