Craig Noone comfortably came through 45 minutes on his return from injury as Cardiff City’s development side defeated Birmingham City 2-1 with a late winner at Wast Hills Training Ground on Tuesday afternoon.
The former Brighton & Hove Albion man almost started the match in style, cutting in from the right wing before curling a left footed shot towards goal that drifted just over the crossbar.
Cardiff continued to threaten the home side, with Noone’s cross field ball finding Tyler Roche, though Roche’s low cross from the left side just evaded the outstretched leg of striker Rhys Healey.
It was the hosts who went in at the break one goal ahead, after midfielder Liam Truslove rose highest to powerfully head home James Fry’s cross, giving City keeper Charlie Horton little chance of saving.
GOAL: BIRMINGHAM CITY 1-0 CARDIFF CITY (Liam Truslove, 43 mins)
HALF TIME: BIRMINGHAM CITY 1-0 CARDIFF CITY
Nilton Terroso withdrew Craig Noone at half time following an impressive opening 45 minute spell. After coming through unscathed, the City winger will hope to be in Ole’s thoughts ahead of the upcoming home double against Norwich City and Middlesbrough.
Coming out of the blocks quickly in the second half, the Bluebirds drew level on 49 minutes with forward Healey scoring his second league goal of the campaign. The former Connah’s Quay man broke clear of United States U23 International Will Packwood before firing under Colin Doyle.
GOAL: BIRMINGHAM CITY 1-1 CARDIFF CITY (Rhys Healey, 49 mins)
The away side continued their impressive start to the second period with substitute Kane Owen almost hitting the back of the net with a long-range free kick. Owen had replaced Macauley Southam at half time in a more advanced position to his usual left-back birth and showed tenacity and strength in an unfamiliar role.
Despite the home team hitting the crossbar three times, it was a fairly even match at Wast Hills with both teams having rightful claims for victory. The winning goal however came on ninety minutes, when the unflappable Doyle was finally caught out by the Cardiff attack.
Forwards Rhys Healey and Dane Griffiths challenged Doyle fairly for a high ball, with the ‘keeper spilling the ball. Fortunately for City, he did so into the path of midfielder Ben Watkins, who composedly slotted home from 10 yards to seal a dramatic late victory for the travelling Bluebirds.
FULL TIME: BIRMINGHAM CITY 1-2 CARDIFF CITY
Cardiff City: Massaro, WilliamsSubs not used:Horton, Wickham (James, 60), Tutonda, Yorwerth, Amondarain, B Watkins, Southam (Griffiths, 45), Bowen, Roche, Healey, Noone (Owen, 45).