U21s final - 'hardest lesson' - Chris
Chris Ramsey described our 3-2 defeat at United in the Barclays Under-21 Premier League Final as the 'hardest lesson'.
The lads produced a performance that mirrored their season in the first half at Old Trafford on Monday night.
The team dominated possession and played free-flowing football, created chances, hit the woodwork twice and went in at half-time deservedly 2-0 up thanks to goals from Jon Obika and Alex Pritchard.
But if we'd produced what was expected in the first half, then United found a typical response in the second half.
They pushed men further forward, had spells of pressure for the first time and when full-back Marnick Vermijl pulled a goal back on 59 minutes, you sensed a change in momentum.
Larnell Cole levelled on 74 minutes but there were still chances either end - Obika and Kenny McEvoy close for us - before United won it with Cole's second for 3-2 just two minutes from time.
So after winning both phases of the Barclays U21 Premier League - National Group Two and the Elite Group - the lads had to settle for runners-up medals in the end-of-season play-offs.
"It’s a learning curve for them and now they're at the business end," said Chris, our Senior Professional Phase Coach.
"If they go out on loan or go on to play for the first team, they must realise there is always something on every game - a whether that’s for points or, in this case, in a final.
"It is the worst way to learn a lesson but in three or four years from now hopefully they will be in a final or winning something with the club and they will understand what it takes and what it means to go that extra step."