Tuesday 10 December 2013

Barclays U21s: Liverpool miss chance to go top

Liverpool sunk by Bolton, Guidetti inspires Man City and Chelsea win U21 Premier League Cup tie

  • John Guidetti (centre) celebrates his goal for Man City against Middlesbrough

  • George Glendon (right) celebrates his goal with the fit-again Marcos Lopes

  • Bolton's Tom Youngs (left) and Liverpool's Jordan Rossiter battle for the ball at Kirkby

  • Jordon Ibe is brought down in the Bolton area...

  • ... and scores the resultant penalty for Liverpool

  • Alex Kiwomya (second from right) came off the bench to score for Chelsea at Cardiff

In the Barclays Under-21 Premier League John Guidetti inspired Manchester City to a 4-1 win over Middlesbrough, Bolton Wanderers beat Liverpool in a five-goal thriller at Kirkby, while in the Barclays Premier League Cup Chelsea won through to the last 16 with an emphatic win at Cardiff City.

Liverpool 2-3 Bolton

Liverpool missed the chance to go top of the Barclays Under-21 Premier League when they were beaten by Bolton Wanderers in a five-goal thriller at the Kirkby Academy thanks to Rob Holding's late winner.

Despite fielding a strong line-up including Martin Kelly and Aly Cissokho, the home side fell behind to quick-fire strikes by Jan Gregus and Zach Clough. Liverpool soon rallied,  with Jordan Rossiter and Jordon Ibe's penalty levelling the scores before the interval, only for Holding to head home late on.

Bolton took the lead on the quarter-hour when Gregus was brought down in the area and converted from 12 yards. The scorer turned provider eight minutes later when Gregus raced down the right to cross for Conor Wilkinson, whose shot rebounded off a post into the path of Clough, who converted an easy chance.

On 37 minutes, Liverpool were back in the match as Rossiter guided a looping header over goalkeeper Jonny Sutherland and, after a spell of sustained pressure late in the first half, Ibe was brought down in the area and accepted the invitation to level the match from the penalty spot.

In an open second half there were chances for both sides but it was Holding who struck the winner, rising highest to power in a corner with five minutes left on the clock.

Liverpool report | Bolton report

Manchester City 4-1 Middlesbrough

John Guidetti played an influential role as Manchester City sealed an impressive Barclays Under-21 Premier League victory over Middlesbrough.

Goals from George Glendon, Sinan Bytyqi, Guidetti and Jordy Hiwula ensured Patrick Vieira's charges won three points at Hyde's Ewen Fields.

City came into this game having played three fewer matches than many teams in the Barclays U21 Premier League, so were looking to climb up from a somewhat misleading 19th place in the table, and they did so in style, as Guidetti, continuing his rehabilitation from a long-term injury, inspired his side to a victory that took them up to 16th.

The Sweden U21 forward crossed for Glendon to head in the opening goal after 18 minutes, and, six minutes later, a fine piece of individual skill by Bytyqi, who dropped his shoulder before letting fly from range to put the hosts two goals ahead.

Guidetti struck the crossbar with an excellent free-kick two minutes into the second period before Middlesbrough halved the deficit with their first shot on goal three minutes later. Mark Kitching raced on to a long ball over the top before calmly beating Ian Lawlor.

Guidetti soon produced the goal his performance deserved when he fired in a rebound following Albert Rusnak's 55th-minute drive and as Boro pushed forward they were caught out again when Hiwula rounded the Jayson Letwiler to get the fourth with eight minutes remaining.

Man City report | Middlesbrough report

Under-21 Premier League Cup

Cardiff City 0-4 Chelsea

Chelsea can look forward to a round-of-16 encounter against West Ham United after completing an emphatic victory at Cardiff City.

Lewis Baker set the ball rolling with a 13th-minute penalty awarded following a foul on Isaiah Brown by Theo Wharton. The Blues doubled their lead early in the second half when Kane Owen's attempted goal-line clearance from a shot by Scotland Under-21 midfielder Islam Feruz rebounded in off goalkeeper Ben Wilson.

Within 10 minutes of the second half Chelsea substitute Alex Kiwomya raced through to extend his side's lead with a deft lob over the onrushing Wilson and Jeremie Boga, who had replaced Brown moments earlier, made it 4-0 after sending a low strike from outside the penalty area into the bottom far corner, following a neat exchange of passes.

Cardiff report | Chelsea report

Barclays Under-21 Premier League results

9 December
Liverpool (Ibe, Rossiter) 2-3 Bolton Wanderers (Gregus, Clough, Holding)

6 December
Manchester City (Glendon, Bytyqi, Guidetti Hiwula) 4-1 Middlesbrough (Kitching)

Under-21 Premier League Cup result

6 December
Cardiff City 0-4 Chelsea (Baker, Wilson og, Kiwomya, Boga)

Find out the full Barclays Under-21 fixture list here and view the table here.
To discover the Under-21 Premier League Cup draw, click here.

You can follow developments on Twitter with the Premier League's account @premierleague or via the hashtag #BU21PL

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Key Points

  • Liverpool beaten 3-2 in open Barclays Under-21 Premier League encounter at Kirkby
  • Manchester City complete 4-1 victory over Middlesbrough
  • Chelsea hit four at Cardiff to reach round of 16 of U21 Premier League Cup