Craig Bellamy’s U18 side travelled to face Milton Keynes Dons in FA Youth Cup Round Three action at Stadium MK on Tuesday, 12th December 2017.
The match started with Cardiff City having the majority of possession against the Dons with some quick thinking football on display from the lively Bluebirds.
Their early persistence could’ve led to a goal with 12 minutes played. Sion Spence gained possession from six yards out after a defensive mix-up from the hosts. However the Welshman dragged his low shot narrowly wide of the far post.
With half an hour played City had another good chance to take the lead. From a 35 yards, Sam Bowen’s drilling free kick was denied brilliantly via a diving save from Alfie Jones.
The visitors continued very much where they left off after the interval with two quick-fire chances. Ryan Reynolds saw a direct header saved well, with 56 minutes played, before Spence had a shot blocked from 15 yards.
Nine minutes later, the Bluebirds came agonisingly close once more. Sam Parsons was denied by the inform Jones inside the area before Tommy Hope blocked a powerful Spence effort from six yards.
As the game approached the end of normal time the home side broke the deadlock against the run of play. Central defender Tommy Hope scoring a sensational volley which went in off the crossbar to make it 1-0.
After four minutes of added time the referee blew the whistle on what was a harsh defeat for Bellamy’s young side.
The former Cardiff City player gave his thoughts after the match saying: “These young players learned the hard way tonight. They deserved a goal and we were punished for not being clinical.
“It’s difficult because you want to win. We have a very young squad overall so it’s important to remember that this is for their development.”
U18 FULL TIME: MK DONS 1-0 CARDIFF CITY
MK Dons: Jones, Ackom (Hourican-Harvey 73’), Sorinola (Wright 79’), Pattison, Tapp, Hope, Bell, Kasumu, Martin (Evans 59’), Bird, Sole. Subs not used: Rose, Brennan.
Cardiff City: Ratcliffe, Reynolds, Jones, Bodenham, Parsons (Evans 85’), Patten, C. Davies, Wootton (Williams 85’), I. Davies, Spence, Bowen. Subs not used: Sharif, Burwood, J. Davies.