Recent loanees Grant Ward and Shaq Coulthirst were back at the Lane as we controlled possession against the Cottagers without finding that clinical edge that would have put the game beyond doubt before a late second goal sealed it.
In the end, two Academy players scored their first Under-21 goals to secure the points – Christian Maghoma headed home in the first half before Shayon Harrison’s late second saw us home.
“I thought we controlled the game well, especially in the first half,” reflected coach Ugo. “We showed flair, good composure, controlled the ball well.
“In some ways, we were a little too comfortable in possession and weren’t ruthless enough especially in wide areas when we outnumbered them but on the whole, after two games in five days, I was pleased with the performance.
“Grant Ward was excellent, broke up play and looked to surge forward. He looked a player. Milos Veljkovic was outstanding, great composure, always in the right position and Chris Maghoma took his goal well and has shown a steady improvement in the last three or four games.
“Credit to the players, they wanted to get better and apply themselves and they have done that.”
Midfielder Grant played 11 times on loan at Coventry, helping the Sky Blues stave off relegation. “It was a hard game, I thought we dominated possession but in the end we had to dig in,” he said.
“The team is progressing, there are a lot of young players in there and they are doing well, I’ve been impressed.”
Centre-back Christian, who made his sixth appearance for the U21s, added: “The goal in the first half helped to settle us down and I was delighted to score my first goal for the Under-21s. It was long overdue!
“I’m happier with the clean sheet though. It was just about the perfect game for me really with the goal and clean sheet but having said that, I could have done some things better.”
The lads finish the season against Everton at Goodison Park on Monday week, May 18 (7pm).