Terry Westley’s West Ham United Development Squad were on the receiving end of a three-goal drubbing by Cameron Toshack’s Swansea City in their Monday evening Premier League 2 clash at the Landore Training Centre.
The Swans’ win came courtesy of first-half goals from East London-born forward George Byers and 19-year-old Jordan Garrick, leaving the East Londoners with a very tough hill to climb in the second period.
They tried with all their might to get back into it, but their weakened ranks couldn’t and bright young Dutchman and former Manchester United man Kenji Gorre rubbed salt in their wounds in the latter stages to secure an impressive 3-0 victory.
The crucial three points were enough to keep Swansea in fifth position in the PL2 Division One standings, just two points behind Everton in fourth, whereas, West Ham also stayed put in their position, remaining sixth but with two games in hand on the rest of the contingent.
From the start in South Wales, AFC Manager Toshack decided on five alterations to the starting Xl from his team’s thrilling away Premier League Cup triumph over Colchester United.
Coming into the Xl were keeper Gregor Zabret, Matic Pajik, Skipper Cian Harries, Daniel James, and striker Jordan Garrick, they took the places of Lewis Thomas, back four-member Mael David, the recently departed Joe Rodon, Liam Cullen and exciting forward Kenji Gorre.
Meanwhile, Irons Boss Westley also opted for five changes in the wake of his side’s home League draw with Leicester City over a fortnight ago at the Chigwell Construction Stadium.
In defence, Vashon Neufville came back in for first-teamer Sam Byram, while in midfield Conor Coventry and Domingos Quina were replaced by Joe Powell and returning Marcus Browne, in attack Martin Samuelsen, who has been loaned out to Burton Albion, was ousted for Anthony Scully, while Toni Martinez, presently with David Moyes’ Senior Squad, was replaced by Jahmal Hector-Ingram.
In the opening exchanges at the club’s Academy Training Ground and in contrast to the pattern of the affair, the visitors had the better of the play in front of goal.
Tunji Akinola, Browne and Grady Diangana were among those to go close for the Irons, though having been patient in the encounter, the hosts struck before the break.
Adnan Maric was able to get free in the box and round Nathan Trott, crossing for Byers to tap in, mere moments later, Toshack’s boys netted an almost identical goal, this time it was Courtney Baker-Richardson crossing and Garrick finishing.
Much like the first-half, the young Hammers had some opportunities after the break, most notably through Browne on his full return from injury, striking the post with a free-kick.
But, in the dying moments, Gorre managed to get past Kristijan Belic and finish underneath Trott, putting the cherry on the Welsh cake and securing a successful Monday night outing for Toshack’s side.
They will now only have a wait of five days until they’re next in action, making the tricky trip up to the North West to face off with a resurgent Manchester City in the League.
Meanwhile, Westley’s boys’ next encounter will also be in the League, just seven days away when Sunderland are the visitors to the Chigwell Construction Stadium, they will be hoping to bounce back from their first defeat since December and their first of 2018 in a hurry.