UNDER-21S

Barclays Premier Reserve League
Leigh Sports Village, 27 Sep 2010

BLACKBURN ROVERS 2
Roberts (60), Hoilett (73 pen)

MANCHESTER UNITED 2
Brady (34 pen), Eikrem (90)
27/09/2010 19:35, Report by Steve Bartram
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Res: Blackburn 2 United 2

Magnus Eikrem struck a last-gasp equaliser for United as a much-changed Reds XI bravely fought back to draw with Blackburn Rovers at Leigh Sports Village.

Robbie Brady's first-half penalty had been overturned by goals from Rovers strikers Jason Roberts and Junior Hoilett after the break, but captain Eikrem capped a stirring fightback by snatching a point with the last meaningful act of the game.

Working without a recognised striker, the Reds created a string of chances and would have been comfortable victors, but for the heroics of Rovers goalkeeper Frank Fielding, who demonstrated the fine form that recently earned him a full England call-up.

The Reds could have fallen behind in the third minute, but the dangerous Hoilett could only plant his free header comfortably within reach of Conor Devlin, restored in goal at the expense of Sam Johnstone.

With Gabriel Obertan operating as a nominated spearhead, Brady made up the left side of an attacking trident, with full-back Marnick Vermijl moonlighting on the right in his first Reserves start.

The young Belgian looked more than capable in unfamiliar territory, repeatedly posing questions of the home defence and flashing two efforts wide of Fielding's post. After a third effort had been blocked at close range, however, Hoilett led a Rovers counter-attack and fired just wide to serve notice of his menace.

United forged ahead shortly after the half-hour mark as Morrison carried the ball from deep, swapped passes with Eikrem and burst into the area. As he released the ball again, he was clipped by Zac Aley and earned the Reds a penalty. Brady sent Fielding the wrong way with a calmly-taken effort.

The goal was just about deserved on the balance of play, but United ended the half in style and could have been home and hosed by the interval, but for Fielding's input. A stunning fingertip save from Vermijl's swerving effort was followed by a spectacular parry from Eikrem's curler and a back-pedalling tip over the bar to keep out Oliver Gill's looping header.

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