U21s Report: City 0 Man Utd 1

City’s Development Squad were narrowly beaten by Manchester United in an entertaining Barclays U21 Premier League clash at the Ricoh Arena on Monday evening.

Chris Wood, Riyad Mahrez and Jeff Schlupp all featured for the Foxes, but Davide Petrucci’s fantastic free-kick after 36 minutes was the difference on the night as the Red Devils moved up to seventh with the three points. 

Leicester fought back spiritedly in the second period, and were unlucky not to score with a fine turn and shot from Joe Dodoo, but failed to break through a resilient United defence. 

The Foxes survived an early scare when Saidy Janko broke free on the right and played an inviting cross in to United striker Jesse Lingard, but the frontman failed to connect and City ‘keeper Conrad Logan calmly gathered. 

City worked hard to break through the United defence, and with 22 minutes on the clock, Schlupp found himself in space on the right-hand side and broke forward with pace. 

The Leicester forward picked out Dodoo inside the 18-yard box, but his shot was well blocked by United central defender Donald Love. 

The visitors were rewarded for their first half pressure when they took a 1-0 lead with 36 minutes gone, Davide Petrucci scoring a fine free-kick from the edge of the 18-yard box. 

City ‘keeper Logan was adjudged to have carried the ball outside of the 18-yard box after he gathered a loose United pass, and Petrucci punished Leicester in clinical style with the resulting free-kick, firing a right-footed strike into the top right-hand corner. 

Leicester responded well to going a goal down, and had a fine chance to equalise with five minutes of the first-half remaining, after excellent link-up play between Micheal Cain and Mahrez saw Schlupp presented with a chance at goal, but he could only fire over from close range on his weaker foot. 

The Foxes started the second half brightly, and were very nearly rewarded after 59 minutes when Dodoo turned smartly on the edge of the box and forced a brilliant save from United ‘keeper Ben Amos. 

Despite City’s impressive start to the second half, United had a chance to double their lead on 73 minutes. 

Red Devil’s forward James Wilson struck from close range after intricate build up play from Petrucci, but Wilson’s shot was well-blocked by Foxes centre-back Alie Sesay. 

Leicester continued to look for that elusive equaliser, and had chances from substitute Harry Panayiotou, who saw his shot blocked, and the lively Mahrez, who fired a free-kick over from 25 yards out, but City struggled to break through a sturdy United defence. 

City raised their game as the second half wore on, but the equaliser wasn’t forthcoming and although United were made to work hard, they were able to hold on for all three points. 

Next up for City’s Development Squad is a trip to Newcastle United on 10 February. 

CITY: Logan (c), Pearson, Elder, Paratore (Dawson 67), Sesay, Taft, Dodoo (Blyth 78), Cain, Wood (Panayiotou 60), Schlupp, Mahrez 

SUBS NOT USED: Kennedy, Simpson 

MAN UTD: Amos, Janko, James, Love, Keane (c), Pearson, Periera, Rothwell, Wilson, Petrucci, Lingard 

SUBS: Grimshaw, McNair, Rowley, Willock 

GOAL: Petrucci 36

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