Tony Carr's West Ham United Under-18s coasted to a 3-0 win at Ipswich Town on Saturday despite playing the majority of the second half with ten men.
United started well are were unlucky not to be ahead within a minute as Danny Kearns' free-kick hit the inside of the post and bounced out. They were not to be denied for long, though, as 19 minutes later Ollie Lee gave them the lead when he drilled home an Anthony Edgar cut-back from 12 yards.
The lead was doubled when a good move involving Kearns, Lee and Ahmed Abdulla set Anthony Edgar through with just the goalkeeper to beat and he prodded the ball into the back of the net.
It was not to be all plain sailing for United, though, as they had Christian Montano sent off for a strong tackle ten minutes into the second half. This presented them with a different kind of challenge and it was one that they rose to admirably, putting their bodies in the way of everything Ipswich threw at them.
After soaking up the pressure for most of the second half, Carr's side made sure of the win with a superb third with ten minutes remaining. Jordan Brown picked up the ball on the left and crossed for Abdulla and the striker finished with a spectacular overhead kick.
After the match, academy director Carr felt the experience of going a man down would help his young side's development. He said: "A clean sheet and terrific win that makes it two in a row after our winter break.
"I think going down to ten men in the second half taught us that there are other aspects of the game that you have to perform in order to win. We had to work hard and chase the ball backwards and forwards. They had lots of possession but very rarely threatened because we defended deep and in numbers and full credit to the lads for keeping them out."
West Ham United: Loveday, Smith, McNaughton, Fry, Brown, Okus (Subuola 80), Kearns (Werndly 85), Lee, Abdulla (Grasser 80), Edgar, Montano.
Sub not used: Mehmet
Goals: Lee (20), Edgar (30), Abdulla (80)
Sent off: Montano (55)