Salford City were knocked out of the Papa John’s Trophy on penalties to Leicester City Under-21s.
Brandon Thomas-Asante and Mani Dieseruvwe had given the League Two Ammies a 2-0 lead, before Admiral Muskwe’s double levelled things up.
Dieseruvwe then notched his second to restore Salford’s advantage, only for Shane Flynn to equalise by lobbing Vaclav Hladky, and send the tie to penalties.
After Dieseruvwe’s penalty was saved, Hladky denied Ali Reghba and was unlucky not to keep another couple out after guessing right so the shootout went to sudden death. Khanya Leshabela’s effort left Sam Fielding needing to score, but his spot-kick was saved by Jakub Stolarczyk to send Leicester through as the only Under-21 representatives.
Ammies boss Richie Wellens made nine changes, handing a debut to the impressive Matt Sargent, but he says the younger players can still work on some areas.
“We got into a really good position 2-0 up then we just stopped doing the things that got us 2-0 up. We didn’t get to the ball, we didn’t track runners and the goals we conceded I have to say were poor.
“There were some good performances in there, I thought Jordan Turnbull was very professional, his attitude, I thought Tom Elliott was good at times and Mani come on and scored a couple of goals.
“All in all we’ve got some fitness in the senior players, but there’s improvement needed from the younger players.”
Salford’s focus returns to Sky Bet League Two now for the rest of the season, beginning on Saturday when Cheltenham Town visit The Peninsula Stadium.