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Hammers grab last-gasp winner

Filed: Tuesday, 9th May 2017
By: Staff Writer

West Ham United's Under 23's are through to the final of the PL2 play-off - after beating Wolves 2-1 thanks to a goal in the closing seconds of tonight's semi final.

With the game poised at one each, the young Hammers were awarded a (relatively soft) penalty in added-on time - which Martin Samuelsen stepped up to convert, sending Terry Westley's team into a play-off Final against Newcastle.

Wolves, who had finished the league campaign two places ahead of West Ham had taken the lead midway through the first half when full back Sylvain Deslandes converted a near post corner.

But United restored parity with less than ten minutes of normal time remaining as substitute Jahmal Hector-Ingram scored with virtually his first touch of the game - and Samuelsen stepped up to fire home the winning spot kick.

"It was an extremely difficult game," assistant manager Liam Manning told whufc.com. "Wolves are well organised, they’re effective in what they do, they’re physical, so we’re delighted with the way the boys applied themselves.

"We were one down for a long time so we’re really proud of them believing they could still get something from the game. The group are like that; they’re a close-knit group. We had four U18s starting tonight.

"We now have another trip up to the North East and we have unfinished business up there. We went up there in the league and ground out a point, but lost in the cup."

Meanwhile captain Declan Rice added: "I said to the boys at the end there, that’s one of the best feelings I’ve had all season. We went 1-0 down when we shouldn’t have but Terry [Westley] just said 'keep going' because we were dominating the game."

* Peter Bearsley's Newcastle Utd made the final courtesy of a 2-0 win against Fulham in the second semi final, played at St James' Park last night.

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