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'Tremendous' Academy paying dividends

28 August 2018

DARREN Moore says another successful night for the youngsters is testament to the hard work of the Albion Academy.

For the second Carabao Cup tie running, rising Baggies stars helped secure safe passage to the next stage of the competition.

Jonathan Leko and Kyle Edwards netted their first senior goals in a 2-1 victory over Mansfield Town, but it wasn't a walk in the park for Albion against League Two opposition.

"It wasn't routine," said Darren.

"But I was really pleased with having so many youngsters in the team tonight.

"We showed really good spirit and moved the ball well in the first hour, dominating the game.

"Only scoring one you feel Mansfield could have a chance to get back in it. We allowed them to do that and build some momentum.

"But I'm really happy with the character and resilience that the boys showed, to go up the other end after being pegged back and score a fantastic goal."

Alongside the goal-scorers, Sam Field, Rekeem Harper and Kyle Howkins also featured on a proud night at The Hawthorns.

"It shows the tremendous work that goes on here in the academy," said Darren.

"Right the way through there were academy graduates on the field and we had young Morgan Rogers on the bench.

"That game today would have done them the world of good in terms of their development going forward.

"We put bodies on the line. Mansfield through it into our box at times and went up against us.

"The younger players tired a bit towards the end of the game but I was really pleased at how we stuck at it."

And there was another positive for the gaffer; the return of Craig Dawson to the starting XI.

Darren added: "It's a good outing for Craig to blow off the cobwebs.

"His general fitness is very, very good but we wanted to get some more match minutes into him.

"To get 72 minutes under his belt would have done him good. We're pleased to have him back.

"It's about picking the bones out of this now and preparing for another tough game on Saturday."


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