Bolton Wanderers Under-23s suffered their first defeat of the season away at Birmingham City on Wednesday.
Facing off at St Andrew's, the young Whites twice found themselves under pressure inside the opening ten minutes as Jake Turner was called into action early on.
Bolton's first chance of the afternoon came soon after as captain Alex Honeyball connected with Jack Earing's corner, though the defender was unable to hit the target at the far post.
Turner had to be alert again midway through the half to deny Viv Solomon-Otabor, before Blues shot-stopper Connal Trueman frustrated Alex Samizadeh at the other end.
However, having enjoyed the better of the first half, Birmingham took the lead shortly before the break as Kyle McFarlane prodded home at the second attempt following a goalmouth scramble after a Blues corner.
Having seen Turner keep out Reece Brown's deflected strike soon after the restart, Birmingham doubled their lead on the hour-mark as Charlie Cooper powered home a 25-yard free-kick.
The Trotters looked to fight back and went close to halving the deficit through George Newell, only for the forward to fire over from close-range for Cole Lonsdale's cross.
But Birmingham remained on top and missed further chances to extend their lead as Wanderers were left with nothing to show for their efforts come the final whistle.
Speaking after the game, David Lee told bwfc.co.uk; “It was a tough ask for the lads against a much more mature team, with our average age only 18.
“We stayed in the game for most of the first half before conceding a scrappy goal from a corner, with them then doubling their lead after the break thanks to a thunderbolt free kick from 18 yards.
“We had a couple of good chances with Honeyball missing the target with a header from six yards early in the first half, before Newell had a chance from a Lonsdale cross early in the second half.
"Overall it was a good experience for them to play at St Andrews against some seasoned pros. This will stand them in good stead."
Bolton: Turner, Spooner, Lonsdale, Honeyball, Lavelle, Perry, Tanner, Earing, Newell, McKnight (Fearnley, 53), Samizadeh.
Subs (not used): Aspinall, Brockbank, Marsh, O'Hanlon.