Dev Squad come unstuck against Toffees

U21 coach Steve Potts said fine margins proved to be the difference as Everton came away from Rush Green with a 2-1 victory on Friday 8 May. 

In an even game, there was little to separate the two sides with Potts’ men enjoying the majority of chances. However, the deadlock was broken in the 23rd minute when Chris Long capitalised on a misplaced pass and slotted by Raphael Spiegel. 

Just moments into the second half the visiting Toffees doubled their lead when Kieran Dowell’s free kick took a wicked deflection which gave Spiegel no chance of keeping it out.

Djair Parfitt-Williams provided the Hammers hope after he beat two men before unleashing an unstoppable shot into the top corner. 

Speaking after the game, Potts reflected: “We weren’t as solid as we were against Manchester City. If we had, I think we would have got something from the game. 

“The first goal was a give away from our point of view. And the second was a deflection from a free-kick. From then on it was always going to be difficult, it always is when you’re chasing a game.”

As well as scoring an outstanding solo effort, Parfitt-Williams proved to be a constant source on invention as he looked to set up fellow attackers Jordan Brown, Grady Diangana and Jahmal Hector-Ingram.

Potts continued to praise the young forward, both of whom have impressed since making the step up from U18 to U21 football.

“That’s what Djair can do, the goal was fantastic. He’s a great player he just needs to become more consistent, that’s his aim now. He showed the magic he can do it’s just whether he can do it on a more consistent basis. Can he do that regularly in the final third and make things happen.” 

Up next for the Hammers is the daunting task of playing Chelsea U21s – at Stamford Bridge. 

“I didn’t think there was much in the game at all. I just felt that if we imposed ourselves more we would’ve done better, that’s where we fell short really. The game was there for the taking.

“Chelsea away is probably the toughest game of the year. It’s over at Stamford Bridge which should be a good experience for the boys. We have to be resolute over there. 

“Hopefully playing in an actual stadium will give everyone a lift and the lads will rise to it.”