U18 Premier League
Reading 2 Arsenal 6 (Swanson (2), Balogun (2), Benson, Burton)
Arsenal U18s extended their unbeaten run across all competitions to 13 games with an emphatic 6-2 victory away to Reading in the league today, with Zak Swanson and Folarin Balogun both hitting braces.
The young Gunners will soon face Reading in the quarter-finals of the FA Youth Cup and this game will give Kwame Ampadu’s side much confidence going into that fixture.
Ampadu was without Vontae Daley-Campbell, Trae Coyle, Bukayo Saka and Tyreece John-Jules, who are on international duty with England U17s, but the Arsenal coach still fielded a strong side.
Subs: Burton (for McEneff, 68), Spencer-Adams (for Ballard, 79). Not used: Barden, Thompson, Beckford.
Swanson opened the scoring in the eighth minute after being teed up by Jordan McEneff, with Balogun getting his first goal of the game shortly afterwards.
Josh Benson then struck to give Arsenal a three-goal advantage with just 16 minutes gone, but Reading reduced the deficit through Thierry Nevers.
In the second half Arsenal continued to impress as Swanson and Balogun both scored again and Robbie Burton then added further gloss to the scoreline.
Reading got a consolation goal when Tommy Stevens found the net, but Arsenal fully deserved to take all three points.