Sunderland Under-18s gave a great display before unluckily conceding defeat in the last minute away to Manchester City on Saturday.
Played in hot sunshine a City’s Academy Arena, the game opened quietly and was still goalless at the break. Chances were at a premium with both teams largely cancelling each other out.
Sunderland had a good defensive shape throughout and was strengthened by the inclusion of Bali Mumba and Dan Neil, released from the Under-23 squad.
The Wearsiders had threatened more after the break and took the lead on 60 minutes. Trialist left-back Michael Collins, from Everton, made a good run down the left and crossed for Mackenzie Diccio to score from 12 yards.
It took until the 80th minute before City equalised when Keke Simmonds bent a right-footed shot low into the bottom corner.
It looked like a deserved draw for the young Black Cats against the FA Youth Cup fiinallists but a minute from time Sunderland keeper Jack Newman spilled a shot he ought to have held and Cole Palmer tapped in the resulting loose ball for the winner.
“It was so disappointing,” said Sunderland coach Paul Bryson. “We certainly did enough in the game not to lose.”
Sunderland: Newman, Evans (Smith 79), Almond, Ord, Collins, Mumba, Neale, Scothern, Gooch (Wombwell 73), Kennedy (Miller 65), Diccio.
Subs not used: Cameron, Derbali.