Academy sides learn of Premier League Cup opponents
West Ham United’s U18 and U16 teams will take on equivalent Category One Academy sides from Newcastle United, Stoke City and Tottenham Hotspur in this season’s Premier League Cup competitions.
The groups are identical in both the U18 PL Cup and the inaugural U16 PL Cup, with West Ham drawn in Group E.
Both Academy sides will play on the same matchdays during the group stages, and will face off against their three opponents once, either home or away.
The young Hammers will need to either win their groups, or be one of the two best-placed runners-up among six groups, to advance to the knock-out stages.
The U16 PL Cup has been introduced this year to mirror the U18 competition in its goal of giving developing players experience of the extra competitive edge that comes with knockout football.
The U18s were already due to face rivals Tottenham twice in the U18 Premier League South this season, but will now also look forward to taking on further top-class opposition in North Division sides Newcastle and Stoke.
In last season’s U18 PL Cup, the Irons’ scholars were eliminated at the group stage, despite beating eventual winners Manchester City 3-2 at the Little Heath Sports Ground.
Confirmation of the dates and times of fixtures will follow in due course.