Under-23s kick off pre-season with win

Striker Ulrick on target in win over Worthing.

By Bruce Talbot • 09 July 2021

By Paul Hazlewood
Ulrick Ella scored the only goal of the game.

Albion’s under-23s made a winning start to their pre-season campaign with a 1-0 victory over Worthing at the American Express Elite Performance Centre on Friday.

Ulrick Ella’s first-half goal was the difference as head coach Andrew Crofts used 23 players, including recent signings Gary Dicker – the squad’s over-age player this season – and Jeremy Sarmiento, recruited from Benfica earlier this month.

By Paul Hazlewood
Jeremy Sarmiento created the only goal against Worthing.

And it was Sarmiento who created the only goal in the 15th minute when his shot was parried by Worthing keeper Harrison Male and Ella was on hand to score from the rebound.

Albion had a strong wind behind them in the first half and Haydon Roberts, back from a loan spell with Rochdale last season, forced Male to make a good save from his long-range effort.

Crofts made 11 changes at the break and also brought on Samy Chouchane for the last 15 minutes. Male continued to be the busier keeper, denying Matt Everitt and Lorent Tolaj in the space of five minutes midway through the second half.

By Paul Hazlewood
Under-23s head coach Andrew Crofts.

Worthing’s best moment came when Ricky Aguiar fired wide from a good position just after the break.

The under-23s are back in action next Friday (July 16) when they take on National League South Eastbourne Borough, kick off 7pm.

Albion – 1st half: Rushworth, Tsongui, Roberts, Packham, Furlong, Dicker, Leonard, Sarmiento, Trialist, Khadra, Ella.

2nd half: McGill, Offiah, Dendoncker, Turns, Miller, Peupion, Collyer, Spong, Tanimowo, Tolaj, Everitt, Chouchane.