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18 December 2014

City beaten in extra-time by Doncaster

NORWICH City's Under-18s are out of the FA Youth Cup after losing 3-1 to a Jack McKay-inspired Doncaster Rovers at the Keepmoat Stadium.

McKay gave Rovers the lead from the spot in the first half after Ray Grant fouled Matthew Davies, the opening goal of a hat-trick.

Jerry Gill's Canaries improved after the break and forced extra-time when Michee Efete netted a minute from time.

Their hopes were ended, however, as McKay scored in each half of the added 30 minutes to ensure it was the hosts who progressed the Fourth Round.

As planned, City reintroduced players to their team who have featured heavily for the Under-21s this season, namely captain Grant and defender Efete.

Doncaster beat Morecambe and Peterborough United to reach this stage of the competition and went into the game as underdogs.

Norwich started the brighter with Nathan Fox having a half volley blocked out in the box, but Doncaster made their direct intentions clear from the opening exchanges.

They began to push City back, and the visitors' cause wasn't helped by a couple of shaky moments in defence.

Jack McLaren wasn't being tested in the Doncaster goal largely due to Gill's team's sloppiness in possession, and they were punished on 38 minutes.

Davies advanced into the area close to the byline, fell under the challenge of Grant and the referee awarded the spot-kick.

McKay, brother of central defender and captain Paul, stepped up and sent Aston Oxborough the wrong way with a calm finish.

HALF-TIME: Doncaster Rovers 1-0 Norwich City

Norwich will have known that much improvement was required in the second period and they had their first real chance of the game on 48 minutes.

Efete crossed from the right and the ball fell nicely for Jamie Eaton-Collins, but Jack McKay was on the line to make the decisive intervention.

Their continued on the ascendancy and Eaton-Collins nudged another opportunity wide before Ben Burgess then saw a header come back off the crossbar.

Lewis Byrne-Hewitt couldn't convert the rebound and it looked like it wasn't to be for the Canaries until the 89th minute.

Skipper Grant stood over a free-kick that Efete managed to bundle over the line at the far post, and their hopes of progression were revived.

Youth Cup rules dictate that all ties have to be finished on the day, so the game progressed into extra-time with City hoping to capitalise on some momentum.

Doncaster who came out improved, however, and after Oxborough initially kept out McKay, the striker scored his second, finishing calmly after a mix-up between City's two centre-halves Burgess and Fox.

In the second period of extra-time, City went close to levelling through Byrne-Hewitt, who found the woodwork, but that only served as a precursor for McKay's hat-trick goal, one he pounced for after further hesitant City defending.

Rovers comfortably saw the rest of the contest out, and Norwich's FA Youth Cup campaign ended at the first hurdle.

FULL-TIME: Doncaster Rovers 3-1 Norwich City (AET)

GOALS: Rovers: Jack McKay (pen 38, 102, 113) - Canaries: Michee Efete (89)

DONCASTER ROVERS: McLaren, Greasley, Carberry, Head, P McKay (c), Mbuti, Davies, J McKay, Mandeville, Gordon (McCormick 78), Linley. Subs not used: Parkin, Iveson, Wanless, Barker.

NORWICH CITY: Oxborough; Efete, Fox, Burgess, Ramsay (Black 105); Grant (c), Byrne-Hewitt, Cantwell; Eaton-Collins (Cole 84), Lewis (Couzens 68), Ashley-Seal. Subs not used: Beauchamp (GK), Syme.

REFEREE: Mr W Grunnill


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