Tuesday 27 August 2013

Barclays U21s: Spurs, Fulham and Sunderland maintain perfect starts

Lilywhites seal thrilling victory over West Ham; Fulham and Sunderland also continue winning ways

  • Cauley Woodrow scored Fulham's winner at Norwich with a fourth-minute penalty

  • Emmanuel Ledesma scored the first of seven goals as Boro edged Newcastle at The Riverside

  • Sam Whittall of Wolves beats Stoke's Maurice Edu to a header

The third round of matches in the Barclays Under-21 Premier League produced wins for early season pacesetters Tottenham Hotspur, Fulham and Sunderland, while Manchester United and Chelsea each secured heavy victories.

West Ham United 2-3 Tottenham Hotspur

League leaders Tottenham Hotspur fought back from a two-goal deficit to claim a stunning victory at the Boleyn Ground.

Last year's Barclays Under-21 Premier League finalists went behind on 23 minutes when Dan Potts scored from close range while the hosts doubled their lead just before the break through a header from Seb Lletget, his third goal in three matches.

But Spurs responded impressively after half-time, Simon Dawkins putting them on their way with a deflected shot on 56 minutes. The impressive Lewis Holtby, who completed 82 minutes on his return from injury, equalised with a superb 30-yard drive while the comeback, which took Chris Ramsey's side top of the standings on goal difference, was completed with four minutes to go by Shaq Coulthirst's volley.

West Ham United report | Tottenham Hotspur report

Norwich City 0-1 Fulham

Fulham maintained their 100 per cent winning start to the new season with a 1-0 victory at Norwich City in the Barclays Under-21 Premier League on Bank Holiday Monday.

A fourth-minute penalty by Cauley Woodrow, who had been brought down by Dani Ayala, proved the difference between the two sides as the Cottagers held on for the three points despite the best efforts of Carlton Morris, who was denied by both goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli, twice, and the angle of post and crossbar.

A third win from as many matches takes the West Londoners joint top of the 22-team league table.

Norwich report | Fulham report

Sunderland 3-1 Blackburn Rovers

Sunderland made it three wins out of three with victory over Blackburn at Eppleton CW.

After a goalless first half Mikael Mandron gave the home side the lead, which was then doubled by Spaniard Alex Gorrin's penalty. Rovers halved the deficit through Devarn Green, but the win was secured by Adam Mitchell following up after Carl Lawson's shot had been saved.

Sunderland report | Blackburn report

West Bromwich Albion 0-4 Manchester United

Reigning champions Manchester United secured their first three points of the new campaign with a comfortable win at The Hawthorns.

The visitors, who had Jonny Evans in their line-up, opened the scoring on 15 minutes when Nick Powell, making his first appearances of the summer after a close-season operation, headed home from a corner.

Midfielder Jesse Lingard fed Angelo Henriquez for the second just before the break, Adnan Januzaj made it two from the penalty spot while Tom Lawrence completed the scoring with a straightforward finish.

West Bromwich Albion report | Manchester United report

Manchester City 3-0 Everton

After an opening day defeat at home to Fulham and a 6-3 reverse at Tottenham Hotspur, Patrick Vieira registered his first success as Manchester City’s Under-21 manager on Monday with a comfortable win over Everton.

While Everton fielded a side featuring players who have previously appeared for the senior side – including Magaye Gueye, 23, and Apostolos Velios, 21 –  City's victory was all the more impressive for the fact that all their starters were below the age of 20, with the vast majority 18 or younger.  

Slovakian winger Albert Rusnak impressed Man City's first-team manager Manuel Pellegrini, who was watching from the stands at the Etihad Stadium, with goals on 15 and 30 minutes, while Portuguese forward Rony Lopes scored with his left foot on 17 minutes. 

Man City report | Everton report

Chelsea 5-1 Leicester City

Isaiah Brown and Islam Feruz both scored twice as Chelsea made it two wins from their first two matches with a high-scoring win at Stamford Bridge.

Watching first-team manager Jose Mourinho did not have to wait long to see the Blues take the lead, Brown latching onto John Swift's pass to open the scoring on seven minutes.

Feruz scored the second on the half-hour mark after pouncing on Anjur Osmanovic's blocked shot before firing in for his brace on 60 minutes. Brown made it four with a fine curling effort before Billy Clifford set up Swift with 13 minutes to go.

The Foxes did claim a consolation late on when Tom Hopper lifted the ball over Jamal Blackman in the Chelsea goal.

Chelsea report | Leicester City report

Middlesbrough 4-3 Newcastle United

The Riverside Stadium was treated to a seven-goal thriller as Middlesbrough edged a thrilling contest against their local rivals.

The hosts took the lead on three occasions through the impressive Emmanuel Ledesma, who struck the woodwork twice after opening the scoring in the third minute with a 22-yard shot, Ryan Brobbel and captain Adam Jackson with Newcastle replying with strikes by Jonathyn Quinn and Adam Armstrong, and only when Curtis Main finished a fine run and cross by Brobbel did the hosts have any breathing space.

Even then the Magpies pulled another goal back thanks to Bradley Halliday's last-minute effort but Boro held on for their first success of the campaign.

Middlesbrough report | Newcastle report

Reading 3 - 2 Southampton

An injury-time goal from Gozie Ugwu snatched a win for Reading against Southampton at Hogwood Park.

Defender Jake Cooper put the home side ahead from a corner, but within five minutes Southampton were level via Jake Flannigan's low drive and by half-time they were in front through Jake Sinclair's penalty. But Ugwu equalised with a penalty 13 minutes from time before his solo goal at the death secured all three points.

Reading report | Southampton report

Wolverhampton Wanderers 2-1 Stoke City

Wolves got their first points on the board this season but had to come from behind to beat Stoke at Molineux.

Adam Thomas's deflected free-kick after Brek Shea had been fouled gave Stoke the lead within the opening 10 minutes and that remained the way until midway through the second half when Anthony Forde converted the home side's pressure into a goal after a neat team move.

Within another two minutes Wolves were in front as Jake Cassidy scored what turned out to be the winner.

Wolves report | Stoke City report

Barclays U21 Premier League results

Friday 23 August
Middlesbrough (Ledesma; Brobbel; Jackson; Main) 4-3 Newcastle (Quinn; Armstrong; Halliday)
West Bromwich Albion 0-4 Manchester United (Powell, Henriquez, Januzaj, Lawrence)
West Ham United (Potts, Lletget) 2-3 Tottenham Hotspur (Dawkins, Holtby, Coulthirst)

Saturday 24 August
Chelsea (Brown 2, Feruz 2, Swift) 5-1 Leicester City (Hopper)

Monday 26 August
Manchester City (Rusnak 2; Lopes) 3-0 Everton
Norwich City 1-0 Fulham (Woodrow)
Sunderland (Mandron, Gorrin pen, Mitchell) 3 -1 Blackburn Rovers (Green)
Reading (Cooper, Ugwu 2) 3 - 2 Southampton (Flannigan, Sinclair)
Wolverhampton Wanderers (Forde, Cassidy) 2-1 Stoke City (Thomas)

Download full fixture list here.

You can follow developments on Twitter with the Premier League's account @premierleague or via the hashtag #BU21PL

Key Points

  • Tottenham Hotspur maintain winning ways with 3-2 comeback victory over West Ham in Barclays Under-21 Premier League
  • Fulham and Sunderland also maintain 100% records, as Middlesbrough overcome Newcastle 4-3
  • Read all the reports from the third weekend of the new campaign

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