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MATCH REPORT: Chelsea YOUTH 2 LEICESTER YOUTH 2


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Chelsea's youth team moved on from the FA Youth Cup final disappointment to complete their home league fixtures this weekend. They twice came from behind to share the points.

The fixture was re-match of the Youth Cup fifth round when Chelsea beat Leicester 3-1 at Stamford Bridge but unlike the January encounter, it was the visitors to Cobham who took the lead.

On 18 minutes, Leicester won a free-kick on the right which was quickly-taken and striker Reneil Sappleton got in across the front of Jeffery Bruma and finished well.

The first equaliser came on 39 minutes when after some good play down the right-hand side, possession came to Adam Phillip (pictured) who misconnected with a shot. The ball went straight to fellow forward Frank Nouble who came in on the left and buried it.

Leicester had been playing 4-4-2 but they changed their shape in the second half to match Chelsea's 4-3-3.

For the visitors' second goal, they were perhaps fortunate not to be penalised when as a cross came in from the right-hand side, Sappleton gave Nana Ofori-Twumasi a little nudge before controlling on his chest and finishing to make it 2-1.

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Chelsea's second equaliser was scored late on. Gaël Kakuta, on as a sub, passed out to Jordan Hibbert who crossed to Phillip for an excellent lay-off. Kakuta smashed the ball across the keeper and in off the far post with 85 minutes on the clock.

With the very last kick of the game, Chelsea could have won it. Fabio Borini played in Phillip who timed his run well but one-on-one with the keeper, the shot was saved.

Coach Paul Clement reports: 'It was very important after the Youth Cup final defeat that we approached this game with the right attitude. We had the boys in on Friday to discuss the final and talk about what we could take from the experience and to remind them that if they get to play at the top level, they will be expected to win every game, no matter what the competition.

'We reminded them of the message before this game and the boys responded very well. We knew Leicester would come down with a good team and would be looking for a bit of revenge after the cup tie between us.

'It was quite a physical and competitive game. They had two up front who have played for Leicester's first team in the Championship and they played direct football - but our lads stood up to the task very well. When we went one-down, we didn't lose our spirit because we had played well up to that point.

'Our second goal was fantastic move and strike and we could have won it at the end but I would say a draw is a fair result. I was pleased with the boys performance in a tough game.'

Chelsea Rhys Taylor; Nikki Ahamed, Nana Ofori-Twumasi ©(Ben Gordon 88), Jeffrey Bruma, Billy-Joe King; Tom Taiwo, Jordan Tabor, (Josh McEachran 76), Jordan Hibbert; Fabio Borini, Adam Phillip, Frank Nouble (Gaël Kakuta 81).

The Under 18s final league game of the season is away to Portsmouth on Thursday with a 2pm kick-off.

Source: Chelsea FC

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