Westley hails deserved victory

Terry Westley was delighted to see his side progress to the cup final
Following an enthralling 3-2 semi-final win over Liverpool at Rush Green, Academy director Terry Westley said his side fully deserved their place in the final.

Having come from a goal down after Pedro Chirivella scored early on, Doneil Henry’s close range finish levelled the proceedings.

With the scores level after 90 minutes, Marcus Browne scored his second goal in two games with a cushioned finish yet livewire Sheyi Ojo utilised a loose ball to equalise.

However, seconds later the Hammers were ahead, and in some style as Stephen Hendrie’s thunderbolt of a strike gave Adam Bogdan no chance of saving.

Speaking after a gruelling yet ultimately successful night, Westley said: “We deserve to be in the final, we spoke about that earlier in the week, that was the prize we were vying for, and thankfully we’ve got there.

“Tonight was a terrific advert for youth football, and now we have the opportunity to play a final at the Boleyn Ground, in the final season. So it’s a very special opportunity and one we are all really looking forward to, it is a massive honour.

“It was a tough game, a proper game if you like. This was everything that young players need to develop. It had commitment, it was a passing game, there was tackles flying in.

“Both teams took it seriously tonight, whatever the team they fielded tonight, we had to face it and be prepared to compete and that is what we did.

“Everyone who played tonight did well. There were so many positives for us tonight; it would take too long to mention them all.”
The Development Squad will now face Hull City in a two-leg final which will take place in both home stadiums.

Westley continued: “Doneil really committed himself, as did Oxford who’s has had an small injury recently. Added to that Hendrie and Spiegel, were excellent, they’ve all done superbly.

“Marcus absolutely terrorised them tonight, that’s his second red card so he has to curb that but overall he was magnificent. He was so good that he got under Skrtel’s skin, so that says a lot. He has that ability that not many people have, of breaking down lines, and running past people, it’s a skill that is getting rarer and rarer.”