Tony Carr is relishing the prospect of a weekend derby away to Tottenham Hotspur after the Under-18s won a five-goal thriller at Sunderland.
The weekend win - achieved in no small measure thanks to Elliot Lee's third successive league hat-trick - made it two victories from two matches in the 2011/12 FA Premier Academy League. "It was a happy coach coming back from Sunderland," he told whufc.com.
"We went over up overnight and had a six-and-a-half hour journey. We stayed overnight at Seaburn and then it was just a five minute journey to their training ground. Things went very well for us and it was a terrific team performance."
The Academy Director was particularly pleased to see the way the young Hammers battled back, having seen a two-goal advantage squandered in the second half. "We have all been there before, when you are two-up and the other team come back. Fortunately we had enough in the tank to break away and get the winner."
"Myself and [coach] Nick Haycock are very pleased with the whole squad. We used 14 players and they all did what we needed. Elliot will take the attention and he is showing good form. He has nine goals in three games and can't stop scoring. There is a long way to go for him but he should be pleased."
Sunderland posed a stern test at times with Carr admitting "there were one or two scares". He added: "They were disappointed to lose as they had a lot of the game and a lot of possession. We created as many chance as them but had to work hard to stay on top. It was a very good win and double pleasing as the Under-16s also won 3-0."
Carr added that the Tottenham trip this Saturday would be boosted by the return of Leo Chambers, who has been away captaining the England U17 side. Chambers is just one of several internationals in the team, with centre-back partner Danny Potts capped by the United States, Kieran Sadlier, an Irish regular and Blair Turgott and Matthias Fanimo are also regulars for England at youth level.