Everton U23s 1 - 2 Manchester CityEverton Under-23s suffered a late reverse, losing 2-1 to Manchester City on Sunday after a last-minute penalty proved decisive.
Everton had earlier equalised through striker Ellis Simms — his fourth goal in four Premier League 2 games this season — after Samuel Edozie had given City an early lead.
Man City scored when Edozie found space on the right of the Blues box and his effort took a heavy deflection to wrong-foot Harry Tyrer.
The equaliser came midway through the first half when Simms took advantage of some indecision to prod the ball into an unguarded net.
Everton had a goal disallowed on the half-hour, Ryan Astley won a header from a corner and Matthew Pennington nodded the ball past the keeper, only to be flagged offside. Simms had an effort blocked a minute before the break after some excellent work on the right by Tyler Onyango.
Everton were quick off the blocks in the second half. Rhys Hughes forced James Trafford into a low save just 30 seconds after the restart and then Callum Connolly headed over from close-range. At the other end, Tyrer was alert to save an angled effort from Ben Knight.
As the half progressed, City looked more an more likely to win it and disaster struck for Everton with less than 20 seconds to go. Joe Anderson fouled McAtee inside the box, the referee pointed to the spot and Doyle stroked home the winner.
Everton U-23s: Tyrer, Pennington, Connolly, Baningime, Ouzounidis, Astley, Hughes [Y] (74' Hunt), Onyango, Simms, Iversen, Anderson [Y]. Subs: Hansen, Quirk, Carroll, Cannon.
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1 Posted 05/10/2020 at 13:11:43
For City, Tommy Doyle, Mike Doyle's son, who”s featured for their first team was the key player in midfield, controlling the pace and tempo of the match, a classy player. For us, I had Tyler Onyango as our best player, he's developing into quite a beast of a player and developing his forward play into a real box-to-box midfielder. You could hear Unsworth constantly shouting his name throughout the match, which I took as a good sign him getting special attention. Iversen was also very prominent in attacking moves, Hughes was often deeper but was spraying some great passes forward. At the back Astley had another composed game at centre back, interestingly he played left centre-back in the first half but switched with Ouzounidis to right CB for the second half.
Simms worked hard throughout, and scored a pretty simple goal really made by him harrying their goalkeeper into a mistake resulting in a tap in.
We really missed the pace and skill of Josh Bowler out wide, I suspect he's now moving out on loan as he should do. But it meant we had no out-and-out attacking threat alongside Simms. It looked like Iversen and Onyango had been told to play the attacking role, Iversen left, Onyango right side, then when we didn't have the ball drop back into a five-man midfield with Baningime in the centre, Hughes widest right, Joe Anderson widest left.
While this sounds a bit like a defensive format it was very much in line with how the first team played at times on Saturday, a hard-working No 9 supported by two attackers who dropped into a 5 man midfield to defend. We don't have the wide attacking skills at this level to imitate the first team but the formation and work ethos is very similar which is encouraging.
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