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Chelsea FC Youth 2 v Manchester United Youth 3


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Chelsea's Under 18s succumbed to a tough Manchester United side today, with the visitors coming back from a two-goal deficit to win in the dying seconds. The hosts built up a two-goal lead in the first-half before Manchester United returned with a strike in each half, the winner came as the result of defensive error but against the run of play.

Milan Lalkovic and Philipp Prosenik netted Chelsea's goals, which arrived in a first-half dominated by the Blues before the visitors pulled one back before the break.

There were several new additions to the line up from last year's regular youth team, with Jamal Blackman taking up his position between the posts.

At right-back sat Todd Kane with Ben Sampayo captaining from left-back. Meanwhile, Danny Stenning and Archange Nkumu both took up midfield positions behind an attacking trio of Bobby Devyne, Prosenik and Lalkovic.

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Youth team manager Dermot Drummy fronted a 4-3-3 formation while the visitors lined up with a lone striker and five in midfield. It was the travelling side who began the game brightly, with Ryan Tunnicliffe weaving through midfield before drilling a shot wide of Blackman's goal.

In retaliation, Milan Lalkovic broke down the left flank, only for his subsequent cross to fly high over the box.

Blackman was then forced into an acrobatic save after Jesse Lingard rifled a chance from just inside the box; the Chelsea keeper to blocked with his hands and deflected for Kane to clear.

Soon after the Chelsea shot-stopper used his feet to deny Lingard once more, as both sides scrambled for possession only feet in front of Chelsea's goal, following a long Manchester United ball.

It would take until the 30th minute for either side to break the deadlock, and it was Chelsea who struck first.

A well-earned goal arrived after Lalkovic, chasing down an Anton Rodgers ball, took advantage of a mistake from United's defence and stole possession on the edge of the box, kicking the ball high before hitting it over the line.

The goal opened the game up and end-to-end football ensued. Blackman kept his presence felt, smothering shots and intercepting through balls, while Chelsea's midfield played one-touch football to maintain possession.

And it wasn't long before the Blues made it two, with Prosenik getting his name on the scoresheet.

After an Nkumu tackle won possession, the ball passed along right flank before Devyne took control. His cross found Prosenik at the near post who expertly headed into the net.

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But the two-goal deficit was short-lived as Manchester United pulled one back from the restart, with John Cofie converting a close range chance after the hosts' defence was overrun with red.

Lalkovic and Prosenik both tried to increase the lead further before the break but to no avail as the Blues went into half-time 2-1 up.

Drummy made one change before the restart but the intensity which ended the first-half had subdued slightly, with most of the play taking place in midfield under Chelsea's control.

George Saville was shown a yellow not far into the half, after a late tackle clipped Sean McGinty's feet, but despite the freekick to Manchester United, Chelsea continued to dominate.

Drummy then made another change with 23 minutes left. Prosenik made way for Lewis Baker, while Devyne went into the centre of attack. Seconds later the referee brandished yellow once more after McGinty cut Banga to the ground.

Devyne took advantage of his new position and was denied a chance shortly after. Manchester United keeper Sam Johnstone dived low, deflecting his shot from danger. The subsequent corner nearly found Banga at the far post but bounced out for a throw-in.

However, the game was levelled with 15 minutes left when Michael Keane netted another goal for the visitors from close range as defensive errors gifted him possession.

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Chelsea threatened from the restart, with Lalkovic in particular looking sharp, but the opponent's defence remained resolute, allowing the hosts no chances.

The visitors managed to net the winning goal in the dying minutes. It was another scramble in the area which fell to Cofie, who smashed home with ease.

'It was a good game today,' said Drummy, 'Chelsea played some really good football and it was just unfortunate to concede at the end.

'But the side did really well, Manchester United are a very tough team to play against and we saw that today.'

Chelsea (4-3-3): Jamal Blackman; Todd Kane, Archange Nkumu, Aziz Deen Conteh, Ben Sampayo ©; Anton Rodgers, George Saville, Danny Stenning (Boumesca Tue Na Banga H-T); Bobby Devyne, Philipp Prosenik (Lewis Baker 67), Milan Lalkovic.

Manchester United (4-3-2-1): Sam Johnstone; Michael Keane, Sean McGinty, Michelle Fornasier, Tom Thorpe; Etaz Hussain, Larnell Cole, Ryan Tunnicliffe; John Cofie, Jesse Lingard; Charni Ekangamene.

Referee Mr G J Collins

Source: Chelsea FC

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