U18 Premier League
Arsenal 2 (Clarke o.g. 34, Musah 52) Chelsea 2 (Campbell 36, Thompson 85 (pen)
Arsenal faced a strong Chelsea side in the FA Youth Cup final recently, but this last league game of the season was a rather different encounter, with both sides agreeing to field their U15 teams.
With players unavailable for both teams and Chelsea in the midst of a hectic schedule, an arrangement was made to give schoolboys the opportunity to impress at this level, while the venue was switched from London Colney to the Blues’ Cobham training centre.
Just three of the Arsenal players involved – Yunus Musah, Mazeed Ogungbo and Miguel Azeez – had prior experience of U18 football, with eleven players making their debuts during the course of the game.
Hubert Graczyk, Finley Stevens, Alex Kirk, Zane Monlouis, Levi Lang, Charlie Patino, Tyreece Briscoe and Daniel Oyegoke all started. Meanwhile, there were first call ups on the bench for Alex Lankshack, Kido Taylor-Hart, Luke Plange, Malcolm Ebiowei and Ovie Ejeheim, with the first three of those entering the fray at some stage.
Arsenal took the lead in the 34th minute when Chelsea’s Joshua Clarke turned the ball into his own net, but the Blues pulled level shortly afterwards courtesy of a goal from Rio Campbell.
Musah scored in the second half following good work from Briscoe as Arsenal took the lead, but a late penalty from Max Thompson saw Chelsea earn a point.
Arsenal team: Graczyk; Stevens, Kirk, Monlouis, Ogungbo (Lankshack 46); Azeez, Musah; Lang, Oyegoke, Patino (Plange 75); Briscoe (Taylor-Hart 61). Subs not used: Ejeheim, Ebiowei.