Academy Highlights: Young U18's Draw With Arsenal
The last few games prior to this have seen Chelsea's U18's side unable to secure a win and now that was extended to 4 games afte...
The last few games prior to this have seen Chelsea's U18's side unable to secure a win and now that was extended to 4 games after defeats to West Ham and Southampton and a draw at home to Wolves but this draw at home to Arsenal has some very positive elements to it.
The team that played in this game featured 9 players of schoolboy age with 7 of those starting. Bradley Collins was in goal with the back 4 of Fikayo Tomori, George Brady, Jake Clarke-Salter and Jay DaSilva. The midfield in today's 4-3-3 formation was Mukhtar Ali, Ruben Sammut and Isaac Christie-Davies with the forward line of Kasey Palmer, Reece Mitchell and Tammy Abraham.
In pretty windy conditions the game started with things even but Chelsea had the first chance after some good work from Palmer driving into the box there was a bit of pinball in the box but eventually the ball fell to Abraham who had his shot blocked. Abraham would soon have another chance with a good ball into the box but even though he rose ahead of his marker he could not get enough on the ball and the ball fell wide and the keeper gathered the ball up.
As the first half drew to a close it would be Chelsea who looked the more threatening although the threat from Arsenal was always there but the better of the chances would be Chelsea's.
In the second half it would not take long for Chelsea to make a mistake and gift Arsenal the lead. Playing out from the back as Chelsea's academy side tend to do saw Clarke-Salter make an awful pass inside the Chelsea box which fell right at the feet of the Arsenal 10 and Arsenal punished Chelsea for that by putting away a chance with a very nice chip over the keeper that was gifted to them and took the lead.
Chelsea then tried to push on for an equaliser and had a couple of good chances through substitutes Scott and Kandi the latter with a shot from outside the box that went straight at the keeper and the latter stretching to reach a good through ball but not getting enough on it to trouble the keeper.
Arsenal then immediately punished the blues after some good play from the back by Arsenal and a drive forward followed by a defence splitting pass saw the Arsenal froward beat the sliding in defender and then rifle home a good shot and gave Arsenal a 2 - 0 lead in a game which saw Chelsea having the more chances so far.
Chelsea did not give up however and they continued to press forward with good work from Mitchell and then Kandi winning a corner which was headed home powerfully by defender Clarke-Salter making up for his earlier mistake to make the difference only one goal again. Buoyed by this Chelsea would keep pushing now looking for an equaliser leaving themselves slightly exposed and meaning chances at both ends before Chelsea were awarded a penalty for holding in the box as a cross came in and it was the man fouled Abraham who got up and scored to give the young Blues a deserved 3 points.
Highlights are below: