Report | Swansea City U23s 1 Bristol City U23s 3
Swansea City Under-23s were beaten by new Professional Development League South leaders Bristol City at Landore.
Despite Adrian Akande’s second goal of the season, the youthful Swans – whose squad included 11 scholars – came unstuck against an experienced Robins side boasting well over 100 EFL appearances.
Jon Grey’s side fell behind after just 25 seconds as their opponents pounced on loose play from the kick-off, with Josh Owers crossing for Tommy Conway to finish.
The Swans responded in the 20th minute following a quickfire counter that saw Akande bend a left-footed shot home from the edge of the box after Morgan Clarke’s initial cross was only half-cleared.
But the visitors regained the advantage just before half-time when Conway latched onto Sam Pearson’s lofted ball before beating Jamie Searle.
And Bristol put the game beyond the Swans seven minutes after the break; Louis Britton making it 3-1 following a neat through ball from Ayman Benarous.
“We’ve asked the boys to go out and start with a positive attitude, but we’ve conceded within 25 seconds," said under-23s coach Grey.
“The positive is that we kept going right to the end. We created a few chances at the end which we should have scored, or the keeper made some good saves.
“We were coming up against players with a lot of senior experience; two 24-year-olds, some 22-year-olds – then we’ve got players aged 16 and 17.
“There are glimpses of us playing the right way and doing the right things, but the boys are finding it difficult at the moment.
“There’s a global pandemic going on. The most important thing for Swansea City is the first team and we have to ensure that bubble is kept there.
“The safety of the players is important, so these players are having to be tested and stretched physically, mentally, technically and tactically every single game.
“They’re getting vital exposure to that level earlier than they’ve ever done. We’re ensuring that they’re being stretched to the maximum all the time. They will only benefit from this.”
Swans U23s: Jamie Searle, Morgan Clarke, Cameron Congreve, Matthew Blake (capt), Jake Thomas, Panashe Makokowe, Erick Kenko, Ryan Bevan, Bradley Gibbings, Adrian Akande, Rio Campbell.
Substitutes: Tyler Evans, Ryan Bassett, Adnaan Moti, Michael Murphy, Aaron Hillier.
Bristol City U23s: Jojo Wollacott, Khari Allen, Vince Harper, Josh Owers, Joe Law, Ryley Towler, Sam Pearson, Joe Williams (capt), Louis Britton, Tommy Conway, Ayman Benarous.
Substitutes: Laclan Robertson, Alex Scott, Marlee Francois, Callum Wood.