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Match Reports

U23 Report: Cardiff City 3-0 Crystal Palace

1 November 2016

Palace's Development side fell to a 3-0 defeat away to an experienced Cardiff City team on Monday night, stretching the under-23s run without a victory to five consecutive games.

The Eagles fielded a young side to take on the Bluebirds and it was experience that won out, with the home side boasting first team players Bruno Ecuele Manga, Emyr Huws and Lex Immers in the starting eleven, along with strikers Kenneth Zohore and Frederic Gounongbe, who both scored on the night.

It was the Welsh side who started brightest, with Palace stopper Kleton Perntreou being forced into an excellent save to deny Kadeem Harris inside the opening 10 minutes and it was soon after that they took the lead.

On 12 minutes, Wales international Huws played a corner into the Palace box, finding the head of Gounongbe and the 28-year-old made no mistake, powering the ball past Perntreou.

Both Zohore and Gounongbe went close to doubling Cardiff's advantage shortly after, with supply from Huws, but the former was denied by Perntreou before the latter prodded wide within two minutes of each other.

Palace's main outlet was on the counter for the remainder of the opening half hour and the best chance to draw level came through the speedy Randell Williams, who burst through the Bluebirds backline and fizzed a low ball across the face of goal. However, Manga was alive to the danger and managed to deal with it.

Cardiff missed chances through Zohore, Gounongbe and Matt Kennedy as the first half continued, before Zohore doubled their lead, diverting a powerful cross from Tom James beyond Perntreou on 40 minutes.

The theme of the home side's dominance continued after the restart and it was Zohore who notched the third, scoring a header on 55 minutes. The Eagles' best chances to get back into the game came through Williams and Andre Coker, but both wingers were denied by goalkeeper Brian Murphy.

The Bluebirds had chances to extend their lead, but it finished 3-0.

Palace: Perntreou, King-Elliot, Akiotu, McGregor, Wynter (c), Phillips, Wan-Bissaka, Husin, Andrews (Coker 65’), Williams (Sturgess 86’), Lumeka (Lokilo 68’). Unused Subs: Funnell, Flanagan.

Cardiff: Murphy, James (c), John (O’Sullivan 72’), Huws, Manga, Ajayi, Harris (Tutonda 57’), Kennedy, Gounongbe, Immers (Wharton 57’), Zohore. Unused Subs: O’Reilly, Baker. 

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