City suffered their first defeat of the Premier League 2 season as they fell 3-2 to an experienced Reading side at the Madejski Stadium.
The Royals started in the ascendancy and it was City’s Billy O’Brien who was the busier of the two goalkeepers throughout the early part of the evening.
Reading took the lead early in the first half with a sweetly taken free-kick by 23-year-old midfielder Sandro Wieser finding the net.
Shortly afterwards it was two as Royals striker Tariqe Fosu rounded O’Brien and tucked the ball home. It was to get even worse in the first half for the Blues as Reading defender Thomas McIntyre found the top corner moments before the break.
A much improved second half performance saw several chances fall the way of the Blues. First, Lukas Nmecha’s acrobatic overhead effort from six yards deserved better as it was saved by Reading ‘keeper Luke Southwood.
Attacking midfielder Paolo Fernandes followed this with a weaving run that he ended by powering a shot past the Reading stopper.
After Isaac Buckley-Ricketts added a second the Blues spent the closing stages searching for an equaliser but were unable to break through and were left regretting their slow start to the match.
What it means...
Simon Davies’ team suffer their first defeat of the Premier League 2 season in their third game in the competition.
Many of the Blues squad will now be on international duty before returning in the week ahead of the Premier League 2 Manchester derby at the Etihad Stadium on September 9.
What they said...
Academy director Mark Allen: "We didn't get going in the first half. It was much more spirited in the second half and in truth, I think we deserved a draw by the final whistle."
How they lined up...
City made two changes from last week's team that overcame a strong Arsenal side at the Etihad Stadium. Brahim Diaz made his first start of the season in place of Jacob Davenport while Lukas Nmecha recovered from last week's illness to reclaim his starting berth.
The back five remained the same for the third straight game with goalkeeper Billy O'Brien protected by a defence of James Horsfield, Cameron Humphreys, Charlie Oliver and Marcus Wood.
Rodney Kongolo sat behind Brahim Diaz and Paolo Fernandes in centre midfield looking to supply an attack of Aaron Nemane, Javairo Dilrosun and Lukas Nmecha.
Reading XI: Southwood, Sheppard, McIntyre, Wieser, Hyam, Osho, Barrett, Rinomhota, Samuel, Stacey, Fosu