Chelsea coach Viveash gives credit to young U’s
Colchester United Youths 2 Chelsea Youths 3
COLCHESTER United Under-18s gave their illustrious visitors a scare, before bowing out of the FA Youth Cup at the third round stage, at the Weston Homes Community Stadium on Saturday.
The U’s had knocked Chelsea out of the same competition, at the same stage, in 2004, when current first team boss Joe Dunne was in charge of the youth set-up.
Speed on eight years and the U’s under-18s, under Academy manager, Tony Humes, pushed the Londoners very close.
Chelsea led 2-1, after a crazy six-minute spell at the start of the game, and although they had extended that to 3-1 before half-time, the U’s rallied in the second period and almost poached a late equaliser.
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In fact, Chelsea youth coach Adi Viveash was full of praise for the Essex hosts.
“We have got to give Colchester credit for sticking at it. In the end, we had the mentality to dig deep,” insisted Viveash.
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“In the first half we were really good and could have had a few more goals, but then Colchester scored and they were back in it.”
Islam Feruz broke the deadlock after just two minutes, only for the U’s to respond quickly through an equaliser by Jack Simmons.
Drey Wright’s snap shot forced a corner, and from this set piece Simmons swept home from close in.
Chelsea regained the lead almost straight away, via a sixth minute effort from Lewis Baker.
And it was 3-1 by the 26th minute, thanks to another goal by Baker, this time from the penalty spot after Billy Roast had fouled Feruz in the box.
The visitors struck the woodwork, either side of half-time, but could not add to their lead, and the U’s ensured an absorbing last half-hour by making it 3-2 on 55 minutes.
Wright set the move in motion, and Macauley Bonne’s low cross was converted by Sammie Szmodics.
Bonne came close to an equaliser, only for his header to be safely caught by keeper Mitchell Beeney. There were also opportunities for Kent and Nwachuku.