Kemp delighted with first Dev Squad goal

Dan Kemp impressed during his first start for the U21s
On an outstanding night for the Development Squad up in Newcastle which saw the young Hammers despatch their counterparts 4-1, youngster Dan Kemp’s performance was one of the highlights.

The winger has been in scintillating form recently for the U18s, scoring four goals, and more than took his opportunity during his first start for the U21s by scoring.

The former Chelsea player ran on to Stephen Hendrie’s pinpoint cross and finished with the cool calm collectiveness of a seasoned professional.

Reflecting on an impressive showing, Kemp said: “I’m delighted to have scored on my first start for the U21s but it was a great performance and a great result more importantly. We played really well as a team and it was great to get on the scoresheet.

“We had a game plan to get into their faces and get to the ball, try to win it back early and then exploit the space and I think we did that well. My won it back high up the field and scored some great goals on the counter.

“We broke on the counter with pace, Stephen ran down the left and put in a great cross and I thought I finished it quite well at the backpost.

“That was the third goal it kind of killed the game off, even though it was still pretty early on. We were a bit disappointed to let them back in just before half-time. After the fourth goal went in it was game over really.”

With a number regular U21 players rested, some due to their involvement with the first team, Westley named a young side which captained by Marcus Browne, had six U18s with a further two coming off the bench.

It was Browne who opened the scoring early on, before Moses Makasi, Kemp and Matt Carter all got on the scoresheet.

Kemp continued to describe how crucial getting the early goal was: “The early goal was very important, it set the tone for the game and in general I think we dominated really. Terry said in the dressing room afterwards that that was one of our best performances of the season, so we’re all pleased.

“It would be brilliant if we could make it into the play offs and get promoted, we just need to keep going now.”

Now, Kemp and his teammates will have to refocus quickly as they host Liverpool in the semi-final of the U21 Premier League Cup at Rush Green on Wednesday 16 March.

In what is no doubt the biggest game of the season, Kemp will be hoping his sparkling performance may be enough to see him continue in the side.

He continued: “Wednesday is a massive game, I’d love to involved, I think everyone would. It’s a cup semi-final, at home, so a massive game and one we really want to win.

“I’ve played against Liverpool at U16 level, they’re always a good side at every level so it’ll be tough but we’ve got a lot of quality and know, on our day, that we can beat anyone.”