Brighton & Hove Albion’s under-21s fought back from a goal down to claim a hard-fought 2-1 victory over Conference South side Chelmsford City.
Goals from Daniel Akindayini and Charlie Harris were enough to cancel out Marvel Ekpiteta’s opener, as Simon Rusk’s side made it two wins from two games in pre-season.
Albion created their first chance of the game when a ball from Harris fell into the path of Jeffrey Monakana, who had his cross-shot saved by Clarets keeper Ashley Timms.
The save from Timms saw the ball fall into the path of Akindayini, but he could not divert his shot on target.
Chelmsford punished Albion for that missed opportunity, as Ekpiteta charged forward and sent a superb strike past Seagulls keeper Josh Smith after 18 minutes.
Charlie Henry came close to doubling City’s leader when he hit the crossbar from just outside the box with a free kick, before Akindayini went close once again - only to be thwarted by Timms from close range.
The striker managed to put his name on the score-sheet in the 44th minute, when his low shot beat Timms to put Rusk’s side on level terms going into the break.
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Billy Bricknell had a golden opportunity to regain Chelmsford's lead; he latched onto Ekpiteta’s ball across the area, but his shot was dealt with by Rob Hunt and Ben Barclay in the Albion defence.
Albion’s second-half keeper Harry Doherty was called into action moments later, when he produced a fine save to deny Hugo Skepelhorn from a free-kick.
Former Chelmsford winger Joe Ward received a warm reception from the crowd when he was introduced on the hour mark, and almost made an immediate impact but scuffed his final shot.
The game looked to be heading for a draw until Harris darted forward from midfield and sent a low, rasping strike past Timms in the 86th minute to earn Albion the victory.
ALBION: Smith (GK) (Doherty 45); Hunt, Barclay, Dallison, (Tighe 45), Barnett; Harris, Starkey (Meyers 45); Davis (Kandi 45), Tilley (Davies 70), Monakana (Mar-Larusson 75); Akindayini (Ward 60).