Report: Everton U23s 2 Swans U23s 0
Swansea City Under-23s saw their eight-game unbeaten run in Premier League 2 come to an end with a 2-0 defeat against Everton at Goodison Park.
Toffees skipper Antony Evans opened the scoring in the 21st minute as he curled a free-kick into the top corner beyond the reach of Gregor Zabret, before Con Ouzounidis sealed the win in the final quarter of an hour.
The young Swans made six changes to the side that claimed a crucial 1-0 victory over Burnley in the Premier League Cup last time out.
Gregor Zabret returned in goal and Brandon Cooper rejoined captain Cian Harries in the heart of defence. Daniel James, Adnan Maric and George Byers also returned in midfield, with Courtney Baker-Richardson starting up front to complete a 4-2-3-1 formation.
Meanwhile, Everton named a strong side which included first-team players Ramiro Funes Mori and Davy Klaassen.
The Swans had the first clear sight on goal as Jordon Garrick sprinted into the box before his shot from a tight angle was well-held by Mateusz Hewelt.
However, it was the hosts who took the lead just before the midway point of the first half when Evans’ pinpoint free-kick left Zabret with no chance.
The visitors responded well with Harries drilling just wide of the target, while it took a wonderful last-ditch intervention to deny Byers from getting a clear shot on goal.
After the break, Everton did well to scramble the ball away to prevent Baker-Richardson from capitalising after Hewelt could only parry James’ initial shot, although the keeper held on to Maric’s effort soon after.
But the hosts sealed the win 14 minutes from time when Conor Grant’s free-kick was bundled into the net by Ouzounidis from close range.
Everton U23s: Mateusz Hewelt, Nathangelo Markelo, Lewis Gibson, Beni Baningime, Con Ouzounidis, Ramiro Funes Mori, Antony Evans (Capt), Davy Klaassen (Conor Grant, 70), Fraser Hornby, Bassala Sambou (Alex Denny, 62), Josh Bowler (David Henen, 85).
Subs not used: Joe Hilton, Shayne Lavery.
Swans U23s: Gregor Zabret, Mael Davies, Aaron Lewis, Jack Evans, Cian Harries (Capt), Brandon Cooper, Daniel James, Adnan Marić, Courtney Baker-Richardson (Liam Cullen, 73), George Byers, Jordon Garrick (Botti Biabi, 77).
Subs not used: Steven Benda, Marco Dulca, Joe Lewis.