Match Reports

Albion rescue point in opening Premier League Cup match

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Our men's under-21s came from 2-0 down to draw on Friday night.

By Richie Mills • 15 September 2023

By James Boardman
Marcus Ifill netted late on to rescue a point.

Our men's under-21s came from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Aston Villa in their Premier League Cup opener on Friday night.

Two goals in less than 10 minutes early in the second half from Kerr Smith and Frankie Ealing looked to have secured the three points for the visitors, but a rasping 20-yard strike from Benicio Baker-Boaitey and a stoppage-time equaliser from substitute Marcus Ifill meant both sides picked up a point.

After a relatively uneventful first half at the American Express Elite Football Performance Centre, where the Albion had the majority of the chances and possession, the game burst into life after the break.

By James Boardman
Louis Flowers is beaten to the ball by Villa keeper Filip Marschall.

The hosts failed to clear a corner, a goalmouth scramble ensued, and after Tommy Reid saved once and then twice from close range, he was unable to stop Smith from bundling the ball home in the 47th minute.

Shannon Ruth's team were 2-0 down nine minutes later as Ealing was allowed too much time to run at Brighton's defence and he snuck a shot into the corner at Reid's near post.

But Albion showed their fighting spirit as Baker-Boaitey rifled the ball past keeper Filip Marschall from long range just after the hour mark to halve the deficit.

Albion  dominated the closing stages but it looked like an equaliser would elude them.

But, in the fifth minute of stoppage time, Ifill nodded home after fellow substitute Brody Peart whipped in a delightful ball. 

The under-21s are back in EFL Trophy action on Tuesday when they take on Shrewsbury.

Lineup: Reid; Tasker, Jackson, Atom (McConville 60), Slater; Hinchy, Hinshelwood, Duffus (O'Mahony 60), Baker-Boaitey (Ifill 77), Chouchane; Flower (Peart 70)

Subs not used: Fisher