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8 November 2015

City youngsters beaten by Citizens

NORWICH City's Under-21s fell to a narrow 1-0 defeat at Manchester City's Football Academy Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

Dmitri Halajko fielded Jamar Loza for his first appearance since returning from his loan at Stevenage, as well as handing a start to Jamal Lewis at left-back.

Speaking after the game, the Development Squad coach told Norwich City TV: "We defended well and worked hard, limiting them to few chances and our lads are gutted.

"Our defensive awareness was excellent and we executed our game plan well, so on another day we could've got a point or even won it, so we're disappointed but proud.

"We were unlucky - we nullified them but got caught by a very good set piece. Now we're just looking forward to the upcoming games we have at Carrow Road."

Quick passing and a high tempo led to a frenetic start and Lewis turned the ball into his own net early on, but the flag was already up as Bersant Celina had strayed into an offside position.

Thierry Ambrose struck the post with a weighted header from Celina's in-swinging corner on 17 minutes as Manchester City sought to take an early lead.

The battle for possession in midfield halted any meaningful attacks, whilst the hosts aimed to utilise their speed and set-piece opportunities to break through a resolute Canaries' defence.

Halajko's side had a chance to take the lead when Benny Ashley-Seal seized a loose ball to go through on goal, but a last-ditch tackle from Kean Bryan prevented any attempt at an opener. 

James Horsfield thundered a shot against the crossbar with Killip beaten, but it would take until the 75th minute for the deadlock to be broken.

Cantwell's foul meant Celina was able to execute an inch-perfect free-kick from the edge of the area into the top corner of Killip's net, and the City stopper's attempt to prevent a goal left him bruised as he clattered into the post, but was able to continue.

It was that stunning strike that would seal three points for the Citizens, who closed down the game despite a late surge from the young Canaries.

FULL TIME: Manchester City 1-0 Norwich

NORWICH CITY XI: Killip (c); Hall-Johnson, Efete, Coker (Wallis 53), Lewis; Grant, McGrandles, Loza; Eaton-Collins (Middleton 74), Ashley-Seal (King 68), Cantwell. Subs not used: Oxborough (GK), McIntosh.

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