Canaries under-23s begin pre-season with Portsmouth defeat

Norwich City under-23s boss David Wright Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Norwich City under-23s boss David Wright Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Norwich City under-23s returned to action on Saturday, losing 2-0 to League One side Portsmouth in a pre-season friendly.

David Wright’s side began their preparations for the new campaign with a fixture against Kenny Jackett’s men. Pompey lost to Oxford United in the League One play-offs last season.

The fixture was played behind-closed doors at Five Lakes Resort in Essex.

Both goals arrived in the first half of the contest, with Lee Brown and Ronan Curtis scoring free-kicks within four minutes to secure the victory for Jackett’s side.

New addition Matthew Dennis made his debut after signing from Arsenal on a free transfer last month - and the winger had an opportunity to put the Canaries ahead in the first half only to see his effort saved by Alex Bass.

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Pompey began to assert their dominance thereafter and John Marquis went close only to be denied by Jon McCracken - who made a series of impressive saves on his return after injury.

The League One side made a series of changes in the second half, with eight academy graduates being given an opportunity to impress.

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Simon Power featured for the Canaries despite joining King’s Lynn Town on loan. The Irish youth international was due to play for the Linnets in a friendly fixture against Bishops Stortford, but Ian Culverhouse’s men saw that game postponed.

Pacey winger Aidan Fitzpatrick was influential in creating City’s best chance of the game after the break, with his crossing finding Zach Dronfield but Craig MacGilivray managed to keep his effort out.

For Portsmouth boss Jackett, the outing ended a productive first week back for the south coast club.

“It was good to see our boys back and getting into the groove of things very quickly in the first half – and then a mix of youth and experience in the second.

“It was a pretty good performance for us against Norwich and both sides had a lot of players on show,” Jackett told Portsmouth’s official channels.

“There were some familiar faces for us and a sprinkling in the second half of some younger boys. It’s nice to see them get an opportunity.”

Norwich U23s: McCracken, Thomas (c) (Vaughan, 65), Omobamidele, Tomkinson, Lomas (Nizet, 46), Dronfield (Earley, 80), McAlear (Jackson, 80), Power (Hondermarck, 46), Dennis (Springett), Fitzpatrick (Giurgi, 62), Omotoye (Dickson-Peters, 70)

Subs not used: Rose (GK)

Portsmouth: First Half: Bass; Bolton, Downing, Raggett, Brown; Naylor (c), Morris; Harness, Williams, Curtis; Marquis

Second Half: MacGillivray; Kavanagh, Mnoga, Whatmough, Rew; Storey, Cannon; Brook, Evans, Teggart; Stanley

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