Brighton & Hove Albion’s under-21s were beaten by AFC Bournemouth in a behind-closed-doors friendly at the American Express Elite Football Performance Centre.
First-half strikes from Brandon Goodship and Ben Whitfield were enough to give the Cherries victory, despite Jason Davis’s goal in the final 10 minutes.
Albion made an early assault on the Bournemouth goal when Rob Hunt cut inside to deliver a dangerous ball into the path of Davis, but his header went over the crossbar.
The visitors then settled into the game as Whitfield’s effort from a corner forced a fine save from Seagulls keeper Josh Smith.
Bournemouth broke the deadlock just past the quarter-hour mark after Goodship capitalised on a slip by Tom Dallison and fired the ball beyond Smith.
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Albion came out after half-time looking to quickly reduce the deficit, as George Cole’s shot produced a good save from O’Flaherty before Hunt set up Cameron Wiltshire’s strike that went over the bar.
Ireland’s side continued to probe the Bournemouth defence with Robin Deen seeing his deflected strike stopped by O’Flaherty, while Jimmy Muitt had another effort that rose over the goal.
The Seagulls put their south coast rivals under a spell of more intensive pressure in the last 10 minutes and Davis returned from the bench to make an immediate impact.
The pacy forward took advantage of a defensive mix-up and slotted the ball home from close range.
Albion could have taken a share of the spoils in the minutes that followed, as Jesse Starkey shot wide from inside the box, before Davis showed good close control only to see his strike hit the side-netting as Bournemouth claimed victory.