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Report: Bristol City Under-23s 1-2 UK Armed Forces

City Under-23s were beaten 2-1 by the UK Armed Forces in a pre-season friendly at Bath City's Twerton Park.

The UK Armed Forces proved a strong test for Luke Williams' side, using their physicality to create chances throughout the game.

City Under-23s made a strong start, creating multiple chances in the opening ten mins. Kel Akpobire was proving himself a handful, getting his body between the defenders and the ball and forcing them to make challenges. 

Akpobire flicked the ball down for Jake Andrews early in the game but the forward lashed at it from the edge of the area and sent the ball flying over.

Akpobire found the next chance falling to himself, with Opi Edwards whipping a wicked cross into the area from the right. Akpobire lost his footing charging in, so failed to make a good connection with the ball.

City finally broke the deadlock in the 17th minute from the penalty spot. Andrews took aim from the edge of the area but his shot was blocked. The ball ran back to him and desperate to get him out of the danger area, an Armed Forces defender hacked him down from behind.

Andrews dusted himself down to step up to the spot and take the resultant penalty himself, sending the keeper the wrong way. 

The visitors levelled the scores in the 39th minute, with the goal coming from Hughes. A long ball over the top caught the City defence off guard; the ball came back in from the right and there were three players lining up to tap into the empty goal. 

City made three changes at half-time, bringing on two trialists, plus Cameron Pring for Connor Lemonheigh-Evans, Ash Harper and Andrews.

One of the trialists made an early impact, with his quick feet proving too much for the Armed Forces defence and drawing a foul on the edge of the area. Edwards curled it towards the top corner but the visiting keeper clawed it out superbly.

A third trialist was introduced to the game in the 60th minute, replacing Akpobire up front.

Just when it looked likely the contest would end in a draw, the Armed Forces stole victory right at the death.

Earle stormed down the left to get on the end of a long, sweeping diagonal ball. He cut back in across Pring and slid the ball into the bottom corner past Alhaji Sesay.

City Under-23s: Sesay; Harper (Trialist), H.Smith, Parsons, Nurse; Edwards, Richards, Lemonheigh-Evans (Pring), J.Smith; Andrews (Trialist); Akpobire (Trialist).

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