Arsenal 6-1 West Ham United
Steve Potts’ side travelled to Arsenal after two defeats to begin their Premier League U18 campaign hoping to turn things around in north London.
But the Hammers got off to the worst possible start when Folarin Balogun slotted home from just inside the box to put Arsenal a goal up after just one minute.
In the 12th minute, West Ham got back into the game through Korrey Henry, who beat the onrushing keeper to finish well, a moment which turned out to be the only real highlight for West Ham in a disappointing first half.
Despite Rihards Matrevics’ heroics in goal preventing several Arsenal attacks with one-on-one saves, his resolve was finally breached on 20 minutes through Emile Smith-Rowe.
Six minutes later, Smith-Rowe was on hand to take full advantage of a brilliant bit of refereeing to use the advantage and make it 3-1.
The half-time team talk seemed to work as West Ham started the second half brightly with a lot more energy and self belief. On 47 minutes, West Ham should have been back in the game after a good delivery from Rosaire Longelo led to a scramble and the ball fell to both Henry and Ngakia. Both the forward’s efforts were blocked, however.
Three minutes later, Henry had a driven shot tipped wide by Virginia in the Arsenal goal.
Then the ultimate blow came for the visitors, as on 54 minutes, a goalline clearance bounced out to Medley who headed home to make it 4-1. Within two minutes, Louie Watson was adjudged to have fouled Burton in the box and Smith-Rowe had no hesitation in grabbing the ball and despite Matrevics getting a hand to the strike, it wasn’t enough to stop Smith-Rowe grabbing his hat-trick.
With nine minutes remaining Arsenal finished the scoring when Medley again headed home from a Burton free kick to make it 6-1.
West Ham United: Matrevics, Greenidge, Wells, Belic, Hannam, Coventry, Watson (Dalipi 66), Ngakia (E.Longelo 75), R.Longelo, Rosa (Diallo 66), Henry
Subs not used: Forde, Hamilton