U21 Match Report | Cardiff City 0-2 Charlton Athletic
Cardiff City's U21 side fell to a 2-0 home defeat against the Addicks on Tuesday afternoon.
The young Bluebirds controlled play well throughout the first half, but being held for a goalless first half proved costly as the visitors took the lead late in the second, to secure three points.
Having the majority of possession throughout the first half, City started on the front foot with two good chances at the quarter-hour mark. Cameron Antwi and Chanka Zimba had shots from good areas, but couldn't quite find the back of the net as the hosts looked to gain an early lead.
City later had a great opportunity to break the deadlock with five minutes of the first half remaining, as Tanatswa Nyakuhwa played Zimba through on goal. However, in a one-on-one with 'keeper Ahmed Kone, the striker wasn't able to round and beat the shotstopper.
Minutes later, Zimba again came close as his shot was saved, before Isaac Jefferies' effort was blocked on the rebound, keeping the scores level going into the interval.
Charlton Athletic began the second half with two changes made, and responded to the pressure the Bluebirds had in the first half by putting the hosts on the back foot quickly.
Nyakuhwa found Jefferies with a good cross, but the forward volleyed high and just over the bar. Moments later, Vontae Campbell also saw his shot from inside the area go just wide of the mark.
With 15 minutes remaining, substitute Henry Rylah fired home for the visitors, tapping in at the far post from a low cross. The Bluebirds responded by upping their efforts to find the back of the net in the final quarter hour, chasing the newly-established lead.
In injury time, the hosts saw Xavier Benjamin's goal disallowed for being offside, and after a goalmouth scramble in the Addicks' area, the visitors quickly countered and scored their second of the afternoon thanks to Daniel Kanu.
FINAL SCORE: CARDIFF CITY 0-2 CHARLTON ATHLETIC
Cardiff City: Dennis, Campbell, Bagan, MacNamara, Benjamin, King, Nyakuhwa, Antwi, Zimba, Pritchard, Jefferies. Subs: Thomas, Semenyo, Ware, Crole, Ashford.
Charlton Athletic: Kone, Chin, Oguntago, Mitchell, O'Connor, Elerewe, Kedwell, Adigun, Kanu, Santos, Casey. Subs: Ladapo, Molyneux, Roddy, Rylah, Asiimwe.
Following the final whistle, U21s Manager Darren Purse discussed the performance:
"I'm gutted for the boys, because I think that the work-rate that they put in, and some of the individual performances we had made it that we played really well," he began. "In the second half we let them back into the game a little bit, and didn't start it as well as we could've done. Other than putting the ball in the back of the net, we played really well.
"I'm disappointed with the result, but the performance was really good. It was nice to get some of the lads back from injuries, so getting some more strength in depth to the U21 squad is a big positive.
"It's a learning curve for us, and I don't think we started the second half in the same way that we did the first, but again, it was a good performance overall and we deserved something from the game."