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Southampton U18's 3 Chelsea U18's 2


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Chelsea's youth team scored first and last at Southampton on Saturday, but still came away from the south coast with a defeat.

Despite taking the lead midway through the first half through schoolboy Ruben Loftus-Cheek, defensive naivety and some questionable officiating accounted for the home side's comeback, meaning a late John Swift free-kick could not prevent a fourth defeat of the season.

'In the first half we played very well, Loftus-Cheek scored his fourth goal in four games on 20 minutes following good work by Rohan Ince, and we played some good football through the midfield,' said coach Adi Viveash.

'We had a couple of other opportunities and to be fair to them Southampton were lively up front, Jake Sinclair, Scott's brother, always seems to score against us and has done since Under 14, and he got the equaliser.

'It was disappointing because there should have been a foul on Ismail Seremba, who was shoved in the back in front of the linesman, but he didn't give it, they took a quick throw which led to a good cross and header but I was very disappointed with the officials as it was a blatant foul.

'It was even but they scored their second a couple of minutes before half-time after we had been in control of the situation, which is a problem at the moment.

'Jon Swift's cross-field pass was cut out but their right winger who got hold of the ball and scored, leaving us 2-1 down at half-time.

'You felt with the heat that the game have a lull, but we were in the ascendancy, Loftus Cheek prominent, Nkumu having his best game of the season and Ince played close to his best. Reece Mitchell, an Under 16 played wide right and had a very promising first 45 minutes before he tired in the second half.

'We were caught from our corner with around 20 minutes to go, Ali Gordon took a touch on the edge of the box when he should have hit it, they won the ball and broke, making it 3-1. John Swift scored from a free-kick four minutes from time to get us back in it but we couldn't get anything out.

'There were a lot of positives with four Under 16s, and I feel for the boys because you can see some frustration creeping in now. They're desperate to get a result which is a natural thing, but I was pleased with a lot and Southampton are a good side. Jason Dodd, their coach is a legend down there and does it the right way. It was a proper game of football and our boys can take a lot out of it.'

Chelsea (4-3-3): Blackman ©; A Gordon, Ince, Houghton (Conroy 60), Ake; Nkumu, Swift, Loftus-Cheek, Mitchell (Gnahore 60), Seremba, Affane (Osmanovic 85).

Source: Chelsea FC

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The Saint's under 18's are a decent side & they also had some under 16's in their squad. Chelsea's last goal was lucky as it fook a big deflection from the free kick so a little luck from either side I think.

I didn't see much of that game as i was watching the under 16's thrash Saints 7 - 0. There were some excuses for the Saints poor performance but on the whole they were totally out classed during the 80 minutes. I was largely impressed by the Chelsea under 16's, they really play as a unit, have a good team spirit, work ethic & are very vocal, the first half keeper especially was terrific in barking out orders to his players. I maybe wrong but I can see them winning the youth cup if we can keep them together. It would be unfair of me to make comment on the under 18's as I didn't see enough of the game but there was nothing that made me think they are a bit special were as I thought differently about the under 16's, about 5 or 6 of them atleast look very decent prospects.

Were you there EW?

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The Saint's under 18's are a decent side & they also had some under 16's in their squad. Chelsea's last goal was lucky as it fook a big deflection from the free kick so a little luck from either side I think.

I didn't see much of that game as i was watching the under 16's thrash Saints 7 - 0. There were some excuses for the Saints poor performance but on the whole they were totally out classed during the 80 minutes. I was largely impressed by the Chelsea under 16's, they really play as a unit, have a good team spirit, work ethic & are very vocal, the first half keeper especially was terrific in barking out orders to his players. I maybe wrong but I can see them winning the youth cup if we can keep them together. It would be unfair of me to make comment on the under 18's as I didn't see enough of the game but there was nothing that made me think they are a bit special were as I thought differently about the under 16's, about 5 or 6 of them atleast look very decent prospects.

Were you there EW?

No, unfortunately as much as i would love to i don't get to the games.

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We don't really do that well in the under 18 league but our best players in that group play for the reserves which we do pretty well in anyway so i don't see it as a problem.

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No, unfortunately as much as i would love to i don't get to the games.

Thanks for reply, I can only make every other weekend myself & that includes going to watch at the Bridge. I had a double interest in this fixture so had to be there.

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We don't really do that well in the under 18 league but our best players in that group play for the reserves which we do pretty well in anyway so i don't see it as a problem.

Not too dissimilar to most teams Tomo in having younger players stepping up. Generally I wasn't making comment about the under 18's as a team, I was just stating that I saw some better individual performances from the under 16's than the older lads. As I said I didn't get to watch all their game so my comments are a little unjustified.

I just hope that some of this talent is nurtured properly & they get given the opportunitys to break into the first team squad when the time is right. We have to start producing our own & perhaps with a young new manager that is meticulous with everything he does, we may just start to see that change.

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