McIntyre fires late consolation for youngstersReading’s Under-23s were defeated 2-1 at the hands of hosts Derby on Tuesday evening in the Premier League 2 – the Royals rapped at the door for great swathes of the second half but couldn’t quite force an equaliser, despite Tom McIntyre’s late consolation.
The Royals had dominated the early stages at St George’s Park, but a high press from the hosts resulted in the ball being conceded upfield and leaving forward Charles Vernam with the task of rounding exposed stopper Luke Southwood to slot in for a sixth-minute lead.
Midfielders Josh Barrett and Tyler Frost had chances in turn to cut the deficit before the break as the Royals regained the initiative, only to find goalkeeper Henrich Ravas in the way when they struck the target.
And early in the second half, the Rams made Reading pay when Callum Guy’s whipped free-kick evaded everyone and snuck inside the post to double the lead.
Frost, who had netted an all-important goal in the U23s’ comeback win against Chelsea a week before, was denied another goal from midfield as Ravas reacted in time at his near post. Despite their best efforts it looked like Derby’s defence was going to hold firm.
But then another 17-year-old, McIntyre, made things interesting as the defender made the crucial connection to a corner at the far post to head Reading back within a goal.
Yet despite throwing the kitchen sink against a Derby defence that was getting deeper by the minute, the Royals left the National Football Centre with nothing to show for their efforts.
Full-time: Derby County U23 2-1 Reading U23
Derby U23: Ravas, Stabana, Rawson, Cover, Macdonald, Guy, Santos, Gordon, Vernam, Walker (Cresswell 79), Jakobsen (Babos 46).
Unused subs: Yates, Thomas, Bateman.
Goals: Vernam (6), Guy (56).
Reading U23: Southwood, Sheppard, Griffin, McIntyre, Jules, Wieser, Rinomhota, Frost, Barrett, Esteves de Sousa (Andresson 84), Cardwell.
Unused subs: Tupper, Vancooten, Bennett, Smith.
Goal: McIntyre (84).