City youngsters beaten by RoyalsNORWICH City's Under-21s fell to a 2-0 defeat at Reading's Madejski Stadium on Monday evening.
Dmitri Halajko fielded a young side for the Barclays Under-21s Premier League contest, with Joe Crowe returning in central midfield and Jamie Eaton-Collins playing as the central striker.
Speaking after the game, the Development Squad coach told Norwich City TV: "It was a very tight game and we had a lack of impact in both penalty areas.
"We felt we outplayed them in the middle of the park, but it was the final third we struggled with and we were a bit hesitant in our own box.
"Conor McGrandles and Cameron King are both coming back from a bad virus so for them to get minutes under their belts is extremely pleasing."
The hosts seized an early advantage when Michee Efete's slip allowed Dominic Samuel to play through Andrija Novakovich, who slotted low past Ben Killip to open the scoring.
A tight and edgy first half was played without any real clear-cut chances, despite City's attempts to push for an equaliser.
That theme continued deep into the second half, as Eaton-Collins tried to pounce on a loose defensive header only to see his shot blocked before being cleared to safety.
The game would be sealed 13 minutes from time, when Royals substitute Samuel Fridjonsson was on hand to steer the ball past Killip with a guided header.
City sought a late consolation but were denied by defensive resilience from the Royals which restricted space for Halajko's attackers in the closing stages.
FULL TIME: Reading 2-0 Norwich
NORWICH CITY XI: Killip (c); Hall-Johnson, Norman, Coker, Efete; Crowe (King, 80), Grant (McGrandles, 80), McIntosh; Ramsay, Eaton-Collins (Lewis, 70), Cantwell. Subs not used: Oxborough (GK), Kamal.