Crystal Palace’s first-team may have been struggling for goals lately but the club’s U18 side had no such problems against Charlton Athletic yesterday afternoon, running out comfortable 4-1 winners at our Beckenham training base.
Paddy McCarthy has been building up quite a reputation since taking charge of the youngsters and in yesterday’s south London derby, he saw his boys comfortably outplay their rivals from beginning to end.
The Eagles took the lead after just five minutes when Francis Baptiste instinctively directed a cross into the far corner the Addicks’ net, only to be pegged back on the half hour as the visitors converted from a corner. Luckily, it took just five more minutes for Palace to re-take the lead thanks to a smart header from frontman Oddy.
Just before the interval Oddy added his second goal of the clash, smacking home an effort after some wonderful build-up play from Malcolm. It was a welcome reward for Paddy and his players who, despite the doom and gloom that has been engulfing the first-team of late, appear to be working on something rather special.
The second half saw Palace maintain a sense of true control for the most part, before they added a fourth goal through the aforementioned Baptiste on 75 minutes. With Charlton’s defenders powerless to stop him, Francis met a cross with perfect timing, thumping a header beyond the read of the opposition keeper, adding a fine gloss to what had already been a wonderful afternoon for the hosts.
As you can see above, Paddy spoke to Palace TV after the game, with a full highlights package set to be uploaded to the club’s official online channel at some point in the near future. Given the hunger for information on our academy ranks throughout the fan-base, I’m certainly hopeful of this becoming a more regular feature in the weeks and months to come.
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