Graeme Murty reflects on a difficult afternoon

NORWICH City's Under-18s fell to a 3-1 defeat away to Southampton on Saturday thanks to a first half hat-trick from Saints' striker Dan N’Lundulu.

City began slowly and were duly punished when they conceded twice inside the opening five minutes, leaving them with an uphill task to salvage something from the Barclays Under-18s Premier League contest..

"We were 2-0 down after five minutes, and they were two really poor goals to concede," coach Graeme Murty told 

"We just keep giving ourselves a mountain to climb. Southampton didn't even have to really do anything to win the game.

"They were given a two-goal head start and you can't afford to do that at any level, let alone academy level. I'm frustrated because you work all week on getting the technical and tactical aspects right.

"Then it is undone by basic fundamental errors which leaves you frustrated."

City fought back after the break but could only earn a consolation goal; Emmerson Sambu smashing home the rebound after George Couzens had seen his penalty saved by Harry Lewis.

"I gave them the challenge of winning the second half which they did," added Murty.

"We could have won that half by a bigger margin. We were ahead on every appreciable stat except for the one that really matters so it's a harsh lesson for the players but one that they have to learn from."

"In terms of possession, chances created, territory, corners, shots on target - we were the better side. Those stats mean nothing, however, if you don't dominate the one that matters and we didn't get the right result."

"There's no point one player pointing at another and saying it's their fault – you win as a team and you lose as a team."

NORWICH CITY: Jackson; Pollock, Wallis, Odusina, Syme, Higgs, Aransiba, Sambu, Jaiyesimi, Couzens (O’Donnell, 85), Kamal (Payne, 85). Subs not used: Dickerson (GK), Oddy, Ekumah.

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