Gabriel Martinelli made his return from injury on Tuesday night as our under-21s were beaten 3-0 by Wimbledon in the second round of the Papa John’s Trophy.
The 19-year-old played 45 minutes and looked lively in the final third, but was unable to prevent Steve Bould’s side from dropping out of the competition. William Saliba and Sokratis also started.
We had the better of the first half with some promising play from Martinelli and a free-kick from Miguel Azeez that sailed just over the bar.
The latter then delivered a dangerous cross from the left for our best chance of the evening, but Martinelli’s header was saved and he couldn’t reach the follow up.
Ryan Alebiosu fired just wide of the post from the edge of the area shortly after, but we were made to pay for our missed chances following the break.
After playing out from the back, Tim Akinola was dispossessed on the edge of the 18 yard box and substitute Ryan Longman, who had only been on the pitch for a minute, duly converted.
Paul Osew then fired into the far corner after being played through by Longman, before Akinola was dismissed for a second yellow card offence, kicking the ball away from a free-kick.
Things went from bad to worse as Saliba was also shown a second yellow card, before Joe Pigott made it three deep into stoppage time, knocking us out of the competition.
Next up, our under-23s will face Leicester City on Friday, December 18.
The game will take place at Meadow Park with kick-off at 7pm (UK time).
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