Remy Coddington and his West Ham United Under-18 teammates fell to a 4-1 defeat in their 2020/21 Under 18 Premier League South season opener against Tottenham Hotspurs.
In their first competitive fixture in just over six months, lead coach Kevin Keen’s U18s were looking to build on a strong end to their last campaign and a productive pre-season but came unstuck at the hands of a visiting side who finished clinically.
Despite having beaten Spurs – coached by former Hammer Matt Taylor – on three separate occasions last season, West Ham fell behind after just two minutes played at Little Heath, when Tottenham full-back Kallum Cesay drilled in from the corner of the penalty area.
The Hammers recovered from that early blow in a competitive first half to almost equalize through Gael Kileba, and soon after, new scholar Michael Forbes rose highest to emphatically head home Kai Corbett’s sweetly struck corner and haul his side level.
Unfortunately, they were unable to consolidate on that position, and Tottenham regained the lead just three minutes later through England youth international Dane Scarlett, who dispatched a cross from close range.
Sonny Perkins enjoyed a good opportunity to level the score for West Ham before half-time, and Kamarai Simon-Swyer forced the visiting goalkeeper into a fine near-post save, but West Ham had it all to do following the interval.
Despite showing plenty of intent following the restart, however, it was Tottenham who scored the next goal. Counter-attacking at pace from a corner, Scarlett won the visitors a penalty and subsequently stepped up to find the bottom corner with the resulting kick.
West Ham keeper Josh Roach produced some fine saves to stop Scarlett from getting a hat-trick, but could do nothing to prevent Tarrelle Whittaker’s looping finish off the inside of the woodwork with 13 minutes remaining.
Coddington came off the bench in the 68th minute.