Baggies earn valuable point in first Elite Group fixture
ALBION drew 1-1 at Arsenal in their opening Barclays U21 Premier League Elite Group fixture at London Colney earlier today.
Adil Nabi’s 22nd-minute header gave the Baggies the lead but Brazil international left-back Andre Santos pulled one back for the hosts moments before the half-time interval.
Terry Burton’s outfit also included Arsenal big guns Emmanuel Frimpong, Francis Coquelin, Abou Diaby and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
And development coach David Oldfield believes it was important to put in a solid performance in their first game following the Christmas break.
“The boys played well and worked very hard,” said Oldfield.
“They worked as a team which is what was needed today against a strong Arsenal team.
“It was a pleasing performance and a positive result.
“It’s not all about results but it’s good to come to Arsenal and get a draw.
“We played against one or two of their big boys and equipped ourselves well.
“The lads worked hard, passed the ball well, and were very much a part of the game.
“We talked before the game about the talented young players Arsenal have and it’s always a good challenge to play against proven professionals.”
ARSENAL: Mannone; Jenkinson, Hajrovic, Angha, Santos; Oxlade-Chamberlain (Ansah 70), Diaby (Henderson 65), Coquelin, Frimpong; Akpom, Eisfeld. Subs not used: Charles-Cook, Monteiro, Bihmoutine.
ALBION: L Daniels; Atkinson, Gayle, C Jones, Garmston; O’Neil, Birch; A Nabi, Mantom (Pace 70), Allan; Sawyers. Subs not used: Lewis (gk); Ambalu, Francis, Wedderburn.
GOALS: Albion – Nabi (22) Arsenal – Santos (45)
SENDING-OFF: Arsenal – Frimpong (second bookable offence 90+1)
REFEREE: Keith Hill