Reserves going strong

Alex Dyer has reflected on another strong performance from his youthful reserves after an excellent 2-0 win at Stoke City on Monday night.

It was a second impressive display in four days after the behind closed doors friendly success against Chelsea last Friday when Junior Stanislas stole the show with a hat-trick. The other goalscorer was substitute Anthony Edgar with a tremendous effort and the young midfielder set the side on their way at Stoke with an unstoppable 25-yarder on the hour before Zavon Hines sealed the win with a late penalty.

"We were happy to come in at half-time nil-nil and doing well. I said to them to keep doing what you are doing, be patient and it will pay off. We thought they might switch off a little bit and then Anthony scored a great goal. We played a diamond shape like the first team and he was at the point as he was the other day at Chelsea when he came on for Kieron Dyer.

"Anthony has been among the goals this season and is growing in confidence," said Dyer of the 18-year-old from Plaistow who has been with the club since he was nine. "He has got good ability and he can find the little pockets where he can get the ball and turn. That's what he did against Stoke. He found a gap and let rip with a strike. It was sheer power and speed that beat the keeper."

Dyer said there was confidence throughout his side with the younger performers like Oliver Lee, who reverted to his usual midfield role after a rare turn at right-back against Chelsea, and Balint Bajner showing the form they have displayed in the U18s this season

"The more games they play, the more they are getting comfortable at this level. They have been away all day travelling together but they were ready for action. There were a lot of plusses. Balint played well and he worked harder than I have ever seen him. His control was good and he won his fair share of headers.

"Many of them played on Friday and it gave them a little bit of extra confidence. You could see at Stoke that they felt part of a team. They were good again and you can see they know what each other is about."