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U18s Report: Akinwale brace inspires young Eagles victory on opening day

Leicester City U18
Pennant 7'
Crystal Palace U18
Akinwale 42' 45'
Raymond 79'

Crystal Palace Under-18s secured their first win of the season after coming back from 1-0 down to defeat Leicester City 1-3 at the Leicester City Training Ground.


  • Rob Quinn names strong starting XI ahead of first game as Palace U18 manager

  • The hosts take the lead early on through Kian Pennant

  • Maliq Cadogan rattles the crossbar from a free-kick on the edge of the box

  • Victor Akinwale levels the scores for the Eagles from an indirect free-kick

  • Akinwale puts Palace in the lead on the stroke of half-time

  • Half-time: Leicester City 1-2 Crystal Palace U18s

  • The hosts start the second-half brightly, but can’t equalise

  • Jadan Raymond adds a third for Palace with 10 minutes left

  • The young Eagles see off the Leicester threat to win their opening game of the season

  • Full-time: Leicester City 1-3 Crystal Palace U18s

The hosts enjoyed the majority of possession early on and they made it count, taking the lead six minutes in with a goal from Kian Pennant. The Leicester number 11 capitalised on a rebound after an excellent save from Palace ‘keeper Owen Goodman.

Palace tried to find a way back into the game immediately thanks to excellent link-up play between Maliq Cadogan and skipper Victor Akinwale, though their efforts were blocked by the Leicester defence.

Cadogan almost levelled it for the Eagles with a quarter of an hour on the clock, his powerfully struck free-kick on the edge of the box rattling the woodwork.

Tayo Adaramola made a surging run from inside his own half and played Akinwale through on goal, though Leicester’s ‘keeper Chibueze cut the ball out.

Palace came close once more, with Akinwale heading narrowly over the bar from close range.

As the wind picked up, so did the young Eagles’ attempts to get back on level terms, and they managed to do just that through Akinwale. The striker rippled the back of the net after an indirect free-kick inside the box.

On the stroke of half-time, moments after levelling the scores, Akinwale found the back of the net once again. The striker capitalised on an excellent through ball from Jadan Raymond to coolly slot home beyond the Leicester ‘keeper.

The Foxes started the second-half just as well as the first, enjoying a multitude of corners that were well dealt with by the Palace defence.

Pennant looked to level for the hosts after latching on to a through ball, though a last ditch-challenge from Palace centre-back James Leonard was enough to stop the onrushing forward.

On the hour mark, a culmination of pressure from the hosts saw a shot from Chris Popov sail narrowly wide of Goodman’s near post.

As the heavens opened, the game began to settle, with both sides making multiple changes.

With 10 minutes left on the clock, the Eagles added a third through Raymond. The Palace No.10 latched on to a dangerous ball across the box from substitute Fionn Mooney.

Leicester poured players forward in an attempt to find a way back into the game, but it was to no avail as the Eagles held on to secure their first victory of the season and the first win under the tenure of Rob Quinn.

Leicester: Chibueze, Kutshienza, Wormleighton (Javid, 63), Grist, Linsay, Godsmark-Ford, Cartwright (Lewis, 90), Cover, Butterfill (Dawkins, 80), Popov, Pennant.

Subs not used: Read, Doherty.

Palace: Goodman, Barton, Adaramola, Ozoh, Leonard, Jobson, Cadogan, Ling (Rodney, 63), Akinwale, Raymond (Ola-Adebomi, 83), Nascimento (Mooney, 63).

Subs not used: Izquierdo, Bell.