Youth team secure victory over Fulham

FREDDIE Sears and Lorcan Fitzgerald were on target as West Ham United's Under-18's ran out 3-0 winners away at Fulham today.

A strong performance from Tony Carr's side saw the Hammers take the lead early in the first half as Alan Curbishley watched from the sidelines.

With just 10 minutes gone, the lively Sears collected the ball well before wrong-footing the Fulham keeper and sending the ball into the back of the net.

Hammers were 2-0 up five minutes later, a great cross from Junior Stanislas was met by Fitzgerald who volleyed home at the far post.

West Ham looked likely score again before the break with several chances cleared off the line, with Sears, Fitzgerald and Jack Collison all going close.

Fulham had the first real chance of the second half, a header from a free-kick, but West Ham were dominating once more and soon had the game wrapped up with a third goal.

Again, good combination from Stanislas and Sears, saw the latter finish the great work off with a low-driven shot past the keeper.

For Hammers, who had to sit out last weekend without a game after the clash with Millwall was called off due to the weather, it was another chance to keep their feet firmly in second place and chasing Arsenal, who dropped points in their game today.

Youth Academy Director Tony Carr was pleased with his team's performance. He said: "It was a good win for us. We scored three good goals and could have had a lot more.

"But half the battle is creating them and we're certainly doing that. The boys have been working very hard on taking more of the chances we set up for ourselves and it paid off today.

"It's all about being consistent and we must make sure we keep on doing this as we know that the more goals we score, the better chance you have of getting the three points."

He added: "We have gained a bit on Arsenal today with this result. They are still quite far ahead, but we are in a good place, in the second spot above Chelsea and we will keep on going to close the gap as much as we can.

"The boys are in good form and I was very pleased once again with the way in which we approached the game and tried to make something of every opportunity."
West Ham: Blackmore, Miller, Widdowson, Ngala, Tomkins, Hales, Stanislas (O'Neill, 70), Collison (Lee, 60), Jeffrey. Sears, Fitgerald (Hunt, 56)
Unused Subs: Blackwell

by Laura Burkin