Chelsea’s development side were the favorites to retain the Premier League 2 Division 1 trophy at the start of the season, and they more than convincingly proved their title credentials in a 6-1 rout of Manchester United’s development side yesterday.
Goals from Jude Soonsup-Bell and Charlie Brown, and braces from Tino Anjorin and Marcel Lewis ensured a night of domination for the home side with substitute Joe Hugill’s late goal the only source of consolation for the young Red Devils.
Coach Andy Myers named a changed side from the Tottenham game, with Lucas Bergström the man between the sticks in place of Petr Čech and Henry Lawrence slotting in place of the suspended Danny Drinkwater in midfield. Sam McClelland, Abdul Baba Rahman, Tino Anjorin, and Jude Soonsup-Bell — who made his first start at the U-23 level — completed the rest of the changes to the starting lineup.
The changes made no difference to the quality of the side however, as the Blues scored twice in the first three minutes through Lewis and Soonsup-Bell. This was Soonsup-Bell’s 12th goal in 10 appearances this season, with the 16-year-old now likely to regularly feature for the development side after proving to be too good at the U-18 level. You can read more about Soonsup-Bell’s journey in this brilliant piece by the Athletic.
Chelsea kept chipping in with regular goals after that, with Tino Anjorin in particular being a constant menace to the United side. The 19-year old finished the night with 2 goals and 2 assists, and proved why he deserves a chance at the senior-level.
The good performances were not just restricted to the attackers, with Valentino Livramento showing his skillful side once again which led to the winning of a penalty that Anjorin converted in the 51st minute. Lewis Bate dominated the midfield, and his influence can be well understood with the ball-control he exhibited below.
Manchester United’s new teenage signing, Facundo Pellistri, was also in the lineup for the Red Devils, but couldn’t do much against a rampant Chelsea development side which speaks more about the quality of our youngsters than his.
The PL2 will now head for a winter break, with Chelsea set to play against West Ham on 16th January. The young Blues will hope to continue their good form in their bid to win a third PL2 title.
Chelsea (3-4-2-1) Lucas Bergstrom; Dynel Simeu, Sam McClelland, Levi Colwill; Tino Livramento, Henry Lawrence, Lewis Bate, Baba Rahman (Pierre Elimby-Ekwah70); Tino Anjorin, Marcel Lewis (Thierno Ballo 78); Jude Soonsup-Bell (Charlie Brown 67)
Unused subs Sami Tlemcani, George Nunn.
Booked Ekwah-Elimby 78, Simeu 86
Scorers Lewis 2, 68; Soonsup-Bell 3; Anjorin 34, 51; Brown 71
Man United Paul Woolston, Ethan Laird, Alvaro Fernandez, Will Fish, Teden Mengi (c), Ethan Galbraith (Mark Helm (68), Arnau Puigmal, Shola Shoretire, Antony Elanga, Hannibal Mejbri, Facundo Pellistri (Joe Hugill 65)
Unused subs Reece Devine, Ondreji Mastny, Charlie McCamm
Booked Fish 30, Puigmal 86, Shoretire 88
Scorer Hugill 84