Southampton Under-18s drew 1-1 with Brighton in the Under-18s Premier League on Monday evening, as a late goal denied them a deserved win.
Good opportunities were created throughout the game by the hosts and they went ahead through Will Armitage’s header on 61 minutes.
Brighton’s leveller came courtesy of Eliot Jenks, with just one minute of normal time remaining.
Saints started positively and saw early shots from Joe Andrews and Tyler Dibling blocked well by Brighton’s defence.
Jayden Meghoma also tried his luck from range in the first 10 minutes, but the ball skidded the wrong side of the post and into the side-netting with Brighton goalkeeper Tommy Reid looking concerned.
Despite the game remaining goalless midway through the first-half, a young Saints side were staying solid at the back and creating opportunities at the other end.
Another shot on goal was saved well by Brighton’s Reid as Will Armitage strode forward from defence and struck a low effort after reaching the edge of the opposing penalty area.
Brighton’s first real chance came around the half hour mark; striker Rameiro Moulton found space down the left and drove infield before stinging the palms of Saints goalkeeper Adli Mohamed, who gathered the ball at the second attempt.
Moulton then had another opportunity to score shortly before the break when he positioned himself perfectly to finish a low cross from the right, but a miskick at the wrong moment prevented him from breaking the deadlock.
The last action of the first period saw a corner delivery from the visitors look destined for the net after a downward header, but Saints got bodies back to make a crucial goal line clearance.
Early in the second-half, Saints were thankful to goalkeeper Mohamed as he made a superb save to tip onto the post and denied a certain goal for Brighton’s Bailey Smith.
After a spirited display though, it was Saints who took the lead on 61 minutes.
A free-kick delivery from Tyler Dibling on the left was not dealt with by the Brighton defence and goalkeeper Tommy Reid failed to claim, leaving Will Armitage positioned well to head home into an empty net.
Saints then had the perfect opportunity to double their advantage. An incisive move from the right saw Tyler Dibling slide substitute Jay Robinson in on goal, but he was denied by Reid who smothered the shot well.
Into the final stages, Saints remained on top and had another chance to secure their win. Alfie Prescott’s pass into the box found Will Merry and the striker’s curled effort, after beating his marker, was tipped wide.
However, a late twist came when Brighton broke forward and saw midfielder Eliot Jenks break into the box to score.
Saints settle for a point, as they turn their attentions to the FA Youth Cup next with a trip to Coventry City on the horizon.