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VITAL EXPERIENCE AS YOUNG BANTAMS LOSE OUT

6 January 2020

City’s young under-18s were unable to record victory in their first game after the festive break, falling to a 4-2 home defeat to Rotherham United. 

Due to players out on loan, injuries and illnesses, lead professional development phase coach Mark Trueman opted to field under-16s Harvey Rowe, Luke Harrop and Jack Wilson. 

The game proved a midfield battle for the most part, however two second-half goals - from Joel Spence and Jacob Gratton - saw the Millers emerge with all three points. 

Despite a couple of early chances from both sides, the first goal of the match did not come until the 22nd minute - through Rotherham striker Jerome Greaves. 

An early low cross from Gratton gave the No.9 the opportunity to flick the ball around his man and slot home - giving the away side the advantage. 

Nevertheless, the lead did not last long as the young Bantams responded - six minutes later - when White held up the ball before releasing Kian Scales. 

The midfielder showed his pace to nip past the on-running defender, before thumping it past Rotherham goalkeeper Alfie Burnett - for his ninth of the season. 

With half-time beckoning, Richard Hairyes’ men took the lead once more - courtesy of Greaves. 

The attacker - who had already netted - rose above the rest to head in Spence’s cross - on the 38th-minute mark. 

Despite leading in the first half, Rotherham found themselves level once more - after a Jack Wilson equaliser. 

The No.7 - who signed for Trueman’s young Bantams earlier in the week - received the ball from the left before smashing in after a neat passage of play involving Dan Francis and Charlie Wood.   

However, United soon made up for the errors and took the lead again - a minute later. 

Gratton - who assisted the first goal - found himself free outside the area before hammering the ball into the top corner.

Three minutes later, the Millers scored their fourth - through Spence. 

The No.4 was left unmarked before unleashing an overhead kick - giving Rotherham a two-goal cushion - with 32 minutes left on the clock. 

The young Bantams fought on in an attmept to conjure a comeback but could not breach the away side’s defence - as the South Yorkshire side came away with the victory. 

CITY: Tom Donaghy (GK); Daniel Francis (booked 90’), Harvey Rowe, Luke Harrop (booked 53’), Jorge Sikora ©; Jack Wilson, Kian Scales, Charlie Wood (booked 73’), Oliver Norman (Raj Palit 70’); Wade Ripley (Yahya Toukara 64’), Jonny White. Subs (not used): Darryl Ombang (GK), Harvey Ormerod, Leke Ajibode. 

ROTHERHAM: Alfie Burnett (GK); Bolton Makwedza (Harron Salah 90+1'), Charles Smith, Joel Spence, Jake Hill; Harrison Beeden, George Scott, Wilfred Peel-Evans (Ethan Kenny 83’), Luke Hodgkinson; Jacob Gratton, Jerome Greaves. Subs (not used): Travon Wilnham. 


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