Norwich City Under-23s were marginally beaten 3-2 by Newcastle United Under-23s in Premier League 2 Division 2 on Monday night.
It was a cagey affair in the game's opening exchanges, neither side really able to get a control on keeping possession. Aidan Fitzpatrick volleyed a knock-down from Isak Thorvaldsson wide for the visitors' first real sight of goal.
As the first half wore on, Newcastle began to look more dangerous, coming at Norwich's defence time and again. City got away with it when Archie Mair spilled a cross into the path of Owen Bailey, only for the Newcastle skipper to shoot over the bar.
Mair made a good save at the near post moments later to deny Luke Charman before Rosaire Longelo volleyed the rebound over.
But the increasing pressure on City's defence eventually had the desired effect for United, Longelo finding the breakthrough on the 35th minute. Receiving the ball from Jamie Sterry on the right wing, Longelo cut back inside, opened his body up and curled a long-range effort expertly into the far corner.
Newcastle, who had won one and lost three of their opening four PL2 fixtures, made no mistake with capitalising on their advantage, scoring the second goal inside the 41st minute. Charman, who looked a threat all night, charged down the right and buried a powerful strike into the far corner.
At 2-0, United were beginning to look comfortable, but Norwich continued to asked questions, and eventually made half-time a tad less relaxing than it otherwise would have been for the hosts.
Right on the brink of the break, a fast City counter led to Fitzpatrick drilling a driven pass cross-field to Dan Adshead. Without hesitation, Adshead picked his head up and smacked the ball into the bottom left corner from distance, taking a nick off the inside of the post for 2-1.
Newcastle came flying out the traps in the second half, Longelo drawing a foul from Mair and inviting a yellow card for the City goalkeeper.
The home side had a chance to increase their lead early on with Thomas Allan threading a precise ball down the right to Charman. The latter pulled the ball back into the danger area, but Andrew Omobamidele showed good reading of the game to poke the ball out for a corner kick.
With 64 minutes played, City completed the comeback. A Thomas Scully corner sailed all the way to the far post, where Thorvaldsson was on hand to pick out the top right corner for 2-2.
The celebrations were short-lived, however, as it didn’t take long for United to restore their lead. Sterry switched the ball accurately to the left wing. Allan took it down well and darted into the 18-yard box before squeezing the ball between Mair’s legs for 3-2.
Norwich piled the pressure on in search of a late equaliser, but Fitzpatrick’s long-shot and Ciaren Jones’ effort from Scully’s indirect free-kick were to no avail. Newcastle held on and picked up their second win of the season.
Newcastle United U23s: Langley, Sterry, Cass, Bailey, Walters, Allan, Young, Sangare, Longelo, Charman, Touré (Scott 90)
Subs not used: Turner, Swailes, White, Anderson
Goals: Longelo (35), Charman (41), Allan (73)
Bookings: Sangare (27)
Norwich City U23s: Mair, Thomas, Omobamidele, Jones, Nizet, Fitzpatrick, Milovanovic (Hondermarck 81), McAlear (Parsons 55), Adshead, Scully, Thorvaldsson
Subs not used: Johnson, Ahadme, Tomkinson
Goals: Adshead (41), Thorvaldsson (64)
Bookings: Mair (46)
Referee: Joseph Johnson
Kick off time: 7pm
Venue: Northumberland FA