HOT SHOT Joe Grayson, the son of Preston North End manager Simon, has fired his school through to the semi-finals of a national football tournament.
The teenage striker eased Clitheroe-based Moorland School into the last four of the Independent Schools’ Under-16 Shield, scoring both goals in a 2-0 victory over rivals Blackburn Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School at windswept Lammack Road.
Deepdale boss Grayson turned up to see the 14-year-old produce a five-star show, and Grayson junior set the tone early on, his powerful free kick rattling the woodwork.
Stefan Mols and Alex Curran, both rising stars at Blackburn Rovers Academy, had taken the tie by the scruff of the neck and it was no surprise when Moorland drew first blood.
Midfielder Curran delivered the ammunition from a corner – and Grayson did the rest, flicking the ball home with the outside of his boot.
And when Moorland turned up the heat even further, the Blackburn defenders had no answer to Grayson’s firepower as the Year 10 forward made the tie safe before half time.
Grayson chased a through ball and, showing great composure, rounded the goalkeeper before slotting the ball into the empty net.
Grayson, who has scored four goals in the competition so far this season, went close to grabbing a hat trick late on, seeing a 30-yard shot well saved.
“It was a tremendous performance from Moorland and Joe Grayson scored two super goals,” said Moorland School’s football coach Charlie Jackson. “He is quick and has a tremendous eye for goal.”
Moorland face a marathon journey for their semi-final tie after they drawn away to face Kimbolton School in Cambridgeshire.
Moorland Headmaster Jonathan Harrison said: "It is an incredibly proud achievement for Moorland to reach the last four of a national competition and hopefully we can go all the way to the final.”