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WBA U-21S 4 CITY U-21S 0

11 November 2012

Young Canaries well-beaten by Baggies

TWO goals in either half condemned Norwich City’s Under-21 development squad to a 4-0 defeat away to West Bromwich Albion on Sunday afternoon.

Romaine Sawyers and Adil Nabi put the Baggies ahead at the break, before Nabi and Kemar Roofe sealed the result in the second half – although City’s Jamar Loza did fire a penalty wide with the score at 2-0.

Declan Rudd started in goal for a youthful City, who were missing Josh and Jacob Murphy – both away with England’s under-19s side, whilst scholars Harry Barker, Harry Toffolo, Reece Hall-Johnson, Cameron McGeehan, Cameron King, and Carlton Morris all started.

Albion meanwhile gave a start to experienced Premier League campaigner Steven Reid, who was making his comeback from a two-month spell out with a hamstring injury.

U-21s Manager Scott Marshall told "It was a tough day for the young group with six of our starting line-up still eligible for the under-18s, and we were up against a strong U-21 group with league appearances and international experience. 

"There has never been a question regarding the effort and enthusiasm of the group so far this season and that again was excellent throughout. Unfortunately we were unable to take the chances when they were presented in the match.

"At 2-0 down missing the penalty just before half time was vital in terms of the result as we had begun to get a foot hold in the match and going in at 2-1 would have given the group belief for the second period. However, on reflection we were able to highlight areas for each individual that we can improve.

"Days like these are difficult to take but we remain positive and in the long run we tend to learn more with renewed determination to improve."

After an impeccably observed minute’s silence on Remebrance Sunday, it was the Baggies who started the game brightest – Nabi firing over just minutes before the home side were awarded a penalty as Bradley Garmston’s cross struck the hand of the unfortunate Barker.

Sawyers stepped up to the mark to fire past Rudd and give the Baggies a 13th minute lead, and they kept up the pressure on City, who were otherwise standing up well to the challenge.

The Canaries held out until 36 minutes, when Nabi fired home Albion’s second from 18 yards after a nice ball in from Roofe.

City never gave up the fight though and were given a great chance to pull a goal back just three minutes later when towering Algerian defender Adel Gafaiti was fouled by Liam O’Neil inside the area and awarded a penalty.

However Loza’s right-footed spot-kick was dragged wide of Shane Lewis’ right-hand post, ensuring the home side went into the half two goals to the good.

HALF-TIME: West Bromwich Albion Under-21s 2, Norwich City Under-21s 0

The Canaries came out much-improved in the second half, with some good hold-up play from first-year scholar Carlton Morris, however Albion were always a threat and on the hour mark the dangerous Nabi made it 3-0.

Rudd made a superb stop from the attacker’s volley, however he was helpless to prevent the same player scoring from the follow-up, which fell kindly to his feet.

After a couple of half chances for the Canaries, Roofe sealed the victory by finishing from close range from Garmston’s ball with just over ten minutes left on the clock.

FULL-TIME: West Bromwich Albion Under-21s 4, Norwich City Under-21s 0

WBA: Lewis, Atkinson, Gayle, D Daniels, Garmston, O’Neil, Reid (I Brown 69), A Nabi, Thorne (c), Roofe, Sawyers (O’Sullivan 80)
SUBS NOT USED: Palmer, Birch, C Jones.

CITY: Rudd Barker, Clunan, McNeil, Toffolo (Durojaiye 75), Hall-Johnson, McGeehan, Gafaiti, King (Hodd 86), Loza, Morris
SUBS NOT USED: Sharpe, Norman, Browne

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