U21s Report: City 0 Southampton 1

Neil Danns, Zoumana Bakayogo and Paul Gallagher all got 90 minutes under their belts as City’s Development Squad slipped to a cruel 1-0 defeat to Southampton at Belvoir Drive on Monday afternoon.

A solitary second half strike from Saints striker Lee Barnard was enough to earn his side the win in extremely blustery conditions, despite The Foxes having arguably the better of the chances.

After going behind City did apply the pressure and Danns had their best chance in the closing stages. However Saints ‘keeper Paulo Gazzaniga pulled off a great reaction save to help his side hold out for the win.

Development Squad coach Steve Beaglehole said afterwards: “I’m disappointed for the lads as they gave everything and the senior players were a great example to the young players too.

“The conditions spoilt it. It was difficult for both teams. I didn’t think it was a fair result as I thought we deserved at least a point. I’m disappointed we didn’t get anything – it’s cruel really. We got in a lot more crosses than them in the second half and a lot more efforts at goal.”

As well as the senior strength of Danns, Gallagher and Bakayogo, Beaglehole also started with new addition Ryan Watson, who filled in at right back in the absence of James Pearson and Jamie Anton.

It was an uneventful first half though in what were difficult conditions that limited both sides. City did have arguably the better of the chances though with Brendan Daniels making the most of good work from Gallagher to fire in a couple of efforts that tested Gazzaniga.

After that Gallagher himself went close with a rasping volley following Harry Panayiotou’s knockdown but it was the visitors who stole a lead on 53 minutes.

Substitute Jake Sinclair raced down the right flank and swung in a searching cross to the far post where a well-positioned Barnard nodded the ball past Adam Smith to make it 1-0.

City stepped it up a gear after the goal but it just wasn’t to be their day as Gallagher and Joe Dodoo were frustrated by some resolute Saints defending before Danns’ drive from the angle in stoppage time was tipped over the crossbar.

City:Smith, Watson, Bakayogo, McCourt, Sesay (c), Frampah (Edler 46), Cain (Paratore 78), Danns, Panayiotou, Gallagher, Daniels (Dodoo 58)

Subs not used:Nkumu, Sharpe

Southampton:Gazzaniga, McCarthy, Targett, Reed, Stephens, Turnbull, Isgrove (Sinclair 27), Flannigan, Barnard, Lee (Moore 46), Rowe

Subs not used:Cropper, Colmer, Mugabi

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