Report: Bolton Wanderers U23s 0-2 Crystal Palace U23s

David Lee’s side were narrowly defeated 2-0 by an experienced Crystal Palace side in their first home game of the Professional Development League 2 season.

Despite Palace fielding the likes of Jonathan Williams and Jordan Mutch, it was the young Whites took control of the game from the opening whistle. Matthew Fearnley had the first chance of the game in the third minute, his shot from 25-yards was saved by Henry.

A couple of minutes later, Wanderers went close once more. After a period of sustained pressure on the Palace defence, Alex Perry regained possession before his curling strike was seen just wide by the Palace keeper.

Premier League regular Mutch had the first shot on goal for the visitors, he dragged his shot wide from 18-yards before Jeff King picked up his first booking of the game for a late challenge on the experienced midfielder.

With the half drawing to a close, the referee pointed to the spot after Elliott Percival’s late tackle on Mutch. Nya Kirby stepped up to take the penalty and converted sending Jake Turner the wrong way to give his side the lead at the break.

Just minutes into the second-half Turner was called into action, the young keeper produced a stunning point-blank save to deny Ryan Inniss’ goal bound header.

With chances few and far between, the Eagles doubled their advantage in the 65th minute. Collecting the ball on the edge of the box, Mutch curled his shot into the far post and into the back of the net.

This looked to be the last action of the game until King was sent off following his tackle on Mutch.

Wanderers have the chance to grab their first win of the season on Friday 1 September as they face Watford FC at Macron Stadium. Ticket information will be released in due course.

Speaking to after the final whistle, Lee said; “I thought we did very well in the first-half against a good experienced team. In the second-half, I thought we got overrun for 15-20 minutes and obviously, they’ve shown their quality with their second goal.

“I was pleased that the lads kept at it despite the deficit. Coming up against players with Premier League experience will prove to be a learning curve for the young players.”

Bolton: Turner, Percival, Muscatt, Edwards, Brockbank, King, White, Perry, Fearnley, McCarthy, Lonsdale.

Subs: Aspinall, Politic, Moulden, Moore, Morris.

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