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NATHAN CLARKE AND MARSHALL FEATURE IN WALSALL RESERVES GAME

10 November 2015

Nathan Clarke and Mark Marshall featured for City's reserves this Tuesday afternoon in their Final Third Development League fixture with Walsall at the club's Apperley Bridge training ground.

Clarke was given just over an hour, while Marshall and Luke James played in the game until the 72nd minute.

First year professionals Joe Cracknell and Dylan Mottley-Henry featured for the whole match.

Visitors Walsall ran out 3-0 winners in the end thanks to second half strikes from Amadou Bakayoko, James Sangha and Reece Flanagan.

The fixture was a game of two halves really, with City totally dominating the opening period.

James had an early drive held by Saddlers shot-stopper Liam Roberts. Mottley-Henry then fired wide from close range later in the half after Roberts had spilled Daniel Devine's shot inside the box.

As City continued to have the better of things as the first half progressed, James fired narrowly wide with low angled drive from the edge of the box before a Marshall free-kick was held by Roberts shortly afterwards.

Walsall seemed to step their play up a level after the break, however, with Levi Rowley forcing Cracknell into a fine tip-over a couple of minutes into the second period.

Cracknell produced an even better save roughly twenty minutes from the end when he denied Sangha following Liam Kinsella's cut-back from the byline.

As the ball was pulled back into the path of the on-rushing Sangha, it looked a certainly that a goal was coming but Cracknell somehow got down to his right to push the effort up onto his crossbar.

Despite Cracknell's heroics in the half though, there was nothing the goalkeeper could do to prevent Walsall breaking the deadlock a minute later when Bakayoko headed home from close range following Flanagan's far post cross.

Walsall doubled their new-found lead shortly afterwards when Saddlers substitute Rory Oliver found the run of Sangha and the midfielder coolly slotted past Cracknell inside the box.

Three minutes later, Sangha and Bakayoko were threatening again for the visitors when the former's cross eventually found the latter lurking around the edge of the area via James Baxendale.

Bakayoko went to bend one into the top corner but Cracknell sprung up to his right to push the effort over the bar - the young goalkeeper's third outstanding save of the half.

Walsall did eventually add a third to make the victory secure nine minutes from the end when Flanagan latched onto Baxendale's forward pass before slotting into far bottom corner with a low angled drive inside the area.

CITY XI

1. Joe Cracknell
2. Kwame Boateng
3. Luca Mellor
4. Daniel Devine
5. Nathan Clarke (c)
6. Kesi Omolokun
7. Dylan Mottley-Henry
8. Xander McBurnie
9. Luke James
10. Sumaili Cissa
11. Mark Marshall

Subs:
14. Niah Payne
15. Ross Kershaw
16. Alex Laird
17. Ellis Hudson


Substitutions:
Laird for N Clarke (61), Payne for James (72), Hudson for Marshall (72)



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