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Report: Bristol City U23s 1-1 Huddersfield Town U23s

City Under-23s were held to a 1-1 draw in the Professional Development League by Huddersfield Town at Ashton Gate.

The development group trailed midway inside the first half when Tin Plavotic's attempted clearance landed in the back of his own net, before Arnold Garita restored parity with a thumping strike as the half-time whistle approached.

Luke Williams handed Tyreeq Bakinson, 18, and Rory Holden, 20, their first starts in City colours since their respective deadline day transfers from Luton Town and Derry City.

Meanwhile, Ivan Lucic started between the posts for the development side, having dropped out of Lee Johnson’s matchday squad since the arrival of Luke Steele.

In chilling conditions, both sides struggled to get a real foothold in the encounter, with the first effort on target not coming until the 17th minute when the lively Jack Boyle warmed the gloves of Lucic with a powerful drive from distance.

This attempt on goal instigated a period of sustained pressure from the visiting Terriers, who fortuitously broke the deadlock just five minutes later.

Luca Colville raced down the left flank with real menace and, as he approached the byline, fizzed a luscious ball across the face of goal which Plavotic blushingly turned into his own net, despite the efforts of fellow Austrian Lucic.

Almost directly from the restart, play reached Kel Akpobire, who produced a mazy run into the area and went to ground under the retreating Danny Kane’s challenge. With all eyes on Alex Blake, the man in the middle waved away the protests, much to the frustration of City’s staff and players alike.

The development group - hoping to bounce back from a 2-1 defeat at Crewe last time out - continued to push forward in search of an equaliser, and they found themselves back on level terms five minutes before the interval.

The lively Akpobire wriggled away from his marker and his vicious strike was parried by Ryan Schofield in Huddersfield’s goal, allowing the alert Garita to fire the rebound into the roof of the net from a closing angle.

As the second half progressed, Huddersfield started to dictate play and were unfortunate not to regain the lead when Olly Dyson latched on to Lewis O’Brien’s threatening cross, only to be denied by the upright.

With the full time whistle imminent, both sides had a chance to snatch a late winner.

Again O’Brien - a constant threat down the left flank - drilled a wicked delivery towards the back post and somehow Lucic scrambled across his goalmouth to deny substitute George Danaker, who looked destined to score from two yards.

At the other end, Bakinson would also be left frustrated on his debut when he latched on to Garita’s lofted pass inside the area, but could only direct his effort into the empty South Stand, ensuring the points were shared in BS3.

City Under-23s: Lucic, Parsons, H. Smith, Bakinson, Plavotic, Morton (Richards 60), Turner-Williams (Harper 58), Holden (Day 75), Garita, Akpobire, Nurse. Subs not used: Sesay, Spark.

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