Billericay Town 0-1 West Ham United XI
Young goalkeeper David Blackmore turned in an outstanding display as a youthful side achieved an impressive 1-0 win away to Billericay Town on Saturday.
Blackmore was on top form throughout the contest, including saving a second-half penalty. That performance, behind a solid back four, paved the way for Zavon Hines to score the winner, also from the spot, in the 70th minute. With many of the club's young players in the United States on the pre-season tour, it was a rewarding day for Kevin Keen.
"I was very pleased with the way they competed and defending," said the coach, who was going off to compete in the London Masters tournament on Saturday evening. "We could perhaps show a bit more creativity and quality but they are young lads who are only a week into training. It was a physically demanding game and it was largely boys playing against adults. We defended very well."
Keen's defence was particularly impressive, including young left-back Jordan Brown and central defenders Josh Payne and Tony Brookes. Right-back Anthony Edgar created some of the best moments in the first half with Blackmore in fine form whenever called upon. After Billericay missed from 12 yards, it was Oliver Lee who earned the visitors the chance to take the lead. The midfielder was brought down by the byline, leaving the referee no choice.
Hines, who had scored the fourth for the first team in a 4-2 win at Hampton and Richmond Borough on Thursday, was confident enough to take the kick and duly scored. He played the full 90 minutes and was the most experienced performer on view, alongside strike partner Jack Jeffery. Both young forwards had loan spells away from the club last season and have high hopes for the new campaign.
West Ham United: Blackmore, O'Neill (McNaughton 88), Payne, Brookes, Brown, Edgar, Lee (Abdulla 75), Harvey (Okus 80), Kearns, Hines, Jeffery (Montano 75).