U18s held at home by Crystal Palace




West Ham United U18s let slip a lead for the second game in succession as they were held at home by Crystal Palace.

Sean Adarkwa gave the Hammers the lead with 20 minutes to play, but they were pegged back five minutes later in a close encounter at Little Heath.

Head coach Steve Potts made three changes from their midweek defeat away at Charlton Athletic. Sam Caiger and Reece Hannam were replaced by Rosaire Longelo and Kevin Dalipi and Anouar El Mhassani made his first start in claret and blue in place of Korrey Henry.

After an even opening 20 minutes, it was the home side who created the first effort on goal. A terrific corner from El Mhassani was headed inches wide by Dalipi.

Palace had an opportunity of their own minutes later with a fierce effort from the edge of the area fizzing just past the post. 

Chances were few and far between for the rest of the first half with Longelo and Dalipi both having speculative efforts on goal.

Potts and assistant Mark Phillips made a number of changes at the interval but the game continued to be competitive. Palace once again went close on the hour mark but goalmouth action as a whole was in short supply.

However, the Hammers found the elusive breakthrough with just over 15 minutes to play. A delicate reverse pass by substitute Louie Watson played in El Mhassani who zipped in an inviting low cross for Adarkwa to tap home and score his first of pre-season.

Palace fought back immediately though and equalised a few minutes later when a low corner was drilled into the net from the edge of the box.

1-1 was probably a fair result as the U18s ticked off another competitive pre-season encounter. Many of the players involved will head to Slovakia for the pre-season camp on Sunday.

West Ham: Matrevics; Ngakia, Dalipi, Wells (c), R. Longelo; Mingi, Belic; El Mhassani, Rosa, Hamilton; E.Longelo.

Subs: Watson, Mbeta, Spyridis, Adarkwa, Greenidge, Okotcha, Forson.

Goals: Adarkwa