WEST HAM UNITED 2
- Albion’s under-21s begin 2016 with a defeat
- Djair Parfitt-Williams and Reece Oxford on target for West Ham
- Niki Maenpaa plays the full 90 minutes
- West Ham complete a league double over Brighton
Brighton & Hove Albion’s under-21s began 2016 with defeat, after being beaten 2-0 by West Ham United at their Rush Green training ground.
Goals in each half from Djair Parfitt-Williams and Reece Oxford gave the Hammers all three points, as the Hammers completed a league double over Brighton following their 2-1 win at the Amex last November.
The hosts had a chance to break the deadlock inside the opening ten minutes, but Niki Maenpaa made a fine save to keep out Elliot Lee’s header from Kyle Knoyle’s cross.
Tom Dallison could have opened the scoring for Simon Rusk’s side, but his header from a corner drifted wide of the target.
Daniel Akindayini then drove towards the Hammers box, but was denied a shot on goal after a crunching tackle by Leo Chambers.
Oxford broke forward for West Ham and fed in Alex Song with a chance, but the Cameroon international blazed his effort over the crossbar.
The hosts broke the deadlock right on half-time, as Cullen and Song’s cleverly worked free-kick set up Parfitt-Williams, who headed home past Maenpaa.
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The Finnish international keeper was called into action again shortly after the restart, when he produced a fine save to keep out Joe Powell’s strike.
The Hammers doubled their advantage in the 78th minute when Oxford rose highest in the box to head in Song’s set-piece.
Maenpaa then denied Lee with a superb save just moments later to keep the score at 2-0.
Dessie Hutchinson came within touching distance of setting up a nervy finish to the game, but the Irishman’s shot was somehow saved by Raphael Spiegel.
ALBION: Maenpaa; Hunt, Barclay, Dallison, Barnett; Monakana, Collar, Hutchinson; Akindayini, Harper, Tilley.
SUBS: Vose (GK), Deen, Harris, Molumby, Maguire-Drew.