Swans U21s lose out away to Derby
Swansea City Under-21s surrendered a second-half lead as a late Derby double saw the visitors lose 2-1 in their Premier League Division Two clash at Ste George's Park on Monday night.
The Swans took the lead 12 minutes after the break when striker Oliver McBurnie headed home his fourth of the season.
But the Rams continued to attack and they equalised after 75 minutes when a freak goal from defender Max Lowe beat substitute goalkeeper Gregor Zabret.
And the hosts claimed all three pointsminutes later when winger Ivan Calero fired home a cross from the right.
The result is the young Swans' second defeat in category one football this season.
DERBY U21s: Jonathan Mitchell, Isak Ssewankambo, Ethan Wassall, Tom Koblenz, Max Lowe; Callum Guy, Charles Vernam (Alefe Santos, 62) Ivan Calero, Alban Bunjaku (Kellan Gordon, 88) Mason Bennett, Offrande Zanzala (Shaquille McDonald, 67)
SUBS NOT USED: Devlin MacKay, Alex Cover.
SWANS U21s: Josh Vickers (Gregor Zabret, 45), Liam Shephard, Dan Alfei, Jay Fulton, Joe Rodon, Alex Gogic, Botti Biabi (Adnan Maric, 67), Josh Sheehan (capt), Oliver McBurnie, Henry Jones (Kyle Copp, 83), Ryan Hedges
SUBS NOT USED: Owain Jones, Keston Davies.
Coach Gary Richards conceded Swansea City Under-21s were second best at St George’s Park on Monday night.
“We didn't reach the levels we have performed at in the first three games,” he said. “We did not control the game or pass the ball enough and lost possession too much when it counted which meant the game became stretched.
“We were not at our best in the first-half but we started the second much brighter with Ollie scoring at a good time for us.
“But Derby kept pushing and equalised through a freak goal that caught out Gregor (Zabret) and then punished our defending minutes later with the second goal."
Swansea went into the game making three changes due to injuries to Raheem Hanley and Daniel James with Stephen Kingsley also unavailable due to his loan move to Crewe.
And the Under-21s suffered another loss when goalkeeper Josh Vickers had to be substituted at half-time after the 19-year-old took a blow to the head while bravely keeping out an attack in the first half.
“We have had to make changes because of loans and injuries,” Richards added. “But we have a big squad of players who can do the job at this level.
“Josh (Vickers) had to come off at half-time after taking a knock to the head and Botti Biabi made his debut and did well for the hour that he played.
“We have done really well in our first three games but our levels dropped and that cost us.
“We have a week before our next game against Wolves and we will need to work on areas that let us down."