WILLIE Donachie felt Birmingham City’s greater experience told as Newcastle United bowed up of the Under-21 Premier League Cup at St Andrew’s in dramatic fashion.
Aaron McLean scored an injury-time winner for the home side, who won 2-1 to knock Newcastle out of the competition.
United’s Rolando Aaron’s had cancelled out McLean’s 78th-minute opener in the dying minutes.
Massadio Haidara, Sammy Ameobi and Haris Vuckic were among the Newcastle players fielded against Birmingham with first-team experience.
“It was very frustrating,” reserve team manager Donachie said.
“We did OK, but they were just that little bit more experienced.
“They had a few players aged over 21. At the end of the day that made a difference.
“We didn’t deserve to lose, and to concede a goal that late in the game was a sickener. The main thing is that they learn from the game and get something out of it.
“Sometimes, you’ve got to learn the hard way.
“Our lads have to realise you only get one chance in a competition like this.
“But it was a fantastic experience playing at St Andrew’s against players they’d never face in the league.”
Meanwhile, United could yet loan out one or more players before tomorrow’s Football League’s “emergency loan” window closes tomorrow.
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew is keen for the likes of Vuckic and Adam Campbell to gain first-team experience.
NEWCASTLE UNITED: Alnwick, Tavernier, Satka, Gillesphey, Haidara (Morgan, 77), Bigirimana, Miele, Sammy Ameobi, Aarons, Vuckic, Campbell.