Highlights - Liverpool 1-1 West Ham United U18s

  • Joe Powell scored a late penalty as West Ham United U18s grabbed a 1-1 draw against Liverpool
  • The Hammers dominated for large periods and probably deserved to take all three points
  • Assistant manager Mark Phillips was delighted by the spirit shown by his players

Joe Powell netted a late penalty as West Ham United's U18s fought back to take a deserved share of the spoils against Liverpool in Merit Group A.

The Hammers dominated large periods at the Kirkby Training Ground and it looked like they would regret their missed opportunities when Okera Simmonds scored with four minutes left to play.

However, the menacing Jahmal Hector-Ingram won a penalty for the visitors in stoppage time and Powell fired home the spot kick to give the Hammers a point.

"The way the game transpired, we definitely created far more clear cut chances," said assistant coach Mark Phillips. "I cannot remember Rihards [Matrevics] having a save to make. We had several clear-cut goalscoring opportunities. 

"When they scored we thought it may not be our night. But it's great testament to the lads and the commitment showed to fight back. A point was the least we deserved." 

The Hammers started on the front foot from the first whistle and went close when Hector-Ingram force Atherton into action from a tight angle.

Liverpool rarely had a sniff in the first half and the visitors continued to look more threatening as Hector-Ingram was once again thwarted by the keeper after a lovely chipped through-ball by Scully.

Head coach Steve Potts was forced into an early change, bringing on Rosaire Longelo for Jake Eggleton just before half-time, and the substitute immediately made a difference out wide.

The Hammers emerged from the interval with the same intensity and missed a terrific chance to take a deserved lead. Hector-Ingram returned the favour for Scully who shot over from point blank range.

The Hammers No9 was prevented by Atherton once again 20 minutes later before Longelo was unlucky with a dipping strike from 30 yards just going over.

Against the run of play though, Liverpool snatched the lead with just minutes to go. A mix-up in the Hammers defence allowed Simmonds to slot home from the edge of the box.

But the Hammers got their just rewards in injury time. Hector-Ingram was brought down by Atherton and up stepped Powell to fire home the penalty and give the visitors a deserved point.

"We were on the road for six hours today so it's a great achievement for the lads to get a point after that," continued Phillips. "I can't praise the lads highly enough.

"We now have three tough games left. We've got a friendly against Barnet on the 13th April because there's three weeks before our next competitive game.

"But our remaining games are three great ones. They're the games you want to play and the boys should be very excited. 

West Ham: Matrevics; Eggleton (Longelo, 36), Akinola, Wells, Neufville; Coventry, Lewis; Johnson, Scully (Hamilton, 82), Powell, Hector-Ingram.

Subs not used: Henry, Forde, Constantinou.

Goals: Powell (pen) 90.

Bookings: Wells.