YOUTH: Argyle 1 AFC Bournemouth 2
The young Pilgrims deserved better than to suffer a last-minute defeat at the hands of EFL Youth Alliance league leaders AFC Bournemouth in the opening round of the Youth Alliance cup at Bolitho Park.
Darren Way's lads had enjoyed the majority of the possession, despite being without central defenders Brandon Pursall and Oscar Halls, as well as Will Jenkins-Davies. However, the trio of youngsters who made their senior debuts in the Papa John’s Trophy on Tuesday night, Finley Craske, Ethan Mitchell, and Scott Crocker, were involved.
Argyle started well, with Crocker's storming run halted in the area by Jack Seddon's great tackle, before Ali Mansaray's header was grabbed under the crossbar by Cherries goalkeeper Joe Besant.
Unfortunately, it was a defensive error that saw the visitors take a 12th minute lead - as a misplaced pass put in Marcus Dans. Although his rasping drive was blocked by Tyler Coombes, the ball rebounded kindly for Aaron Roberts, who had the easiest of tasks to tap the ball home.
Argyle came back at the Cherries and only a great save by Besant kept out Angel Waruih's free-kick, before Rhys Shirley set up Crocker to blaze wide from eight yards.
The young Pilgrims were deservedly level on 35 minutes after great play by Jeremiah Medine saw his cross powered into the roof of the net by Ali Mansaray. The goal shook the visitors into action, but two fine saves by Coombes denied Noa Boutin.
Argyle enjoyed the majority of possession after the break and were unlucky when Crocker was adjudged to be offside as he headed home Medine's cross.
Just as penalties looked the likely path to victory, Bournemouth struck with virtually the last kick of the game, when a low cross into the box found Matt Burgess, who slammed the ball home from eight yards in the fifth minute of added time.
Argyle: Tyler Coombes, Oscar Rutherford , Finley Craske, Charlie Miller (Carlo Garside 78), Ethan Mitchell (capt), Ali Mansaray, Angel Waruih, Jerry Medine, Scott Crocker, Rhys Shirley (Oscar Massey 77), Jamal Salawu. Substitute not used: Lewis Moyle.