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      U18s Report: Raymond brace secures Palace comeback victory over Arsenal

      Arsenal U18
      Edwards 4'
      Flores 24'
      Crystal Palace U18
      Raymond 21' 65'
      Mooney 26'

      Crystal Palace Under-18s returned to winning ways after coming from behind twice against London rivals Arsenal, on a sunny Saturday morning at London Colney


      • Rob Quinn named a strong starting XI, with Cameron Lewis-Brown coming in for Victor Akinwale

      • The hosts started brightly and took the lead four minutes in through Sagoe Junior

      • Palace fought back and equalised through Jadan Raymond 20 minutes in

      • Three minutes later, Arsenal were back in front through Marcleo Flores

      • The young Eagles pegged the Gunners back immediately through Fionn Mooney

      • Raymond fired just over the bar from a free-kick 35-yards out

      • Half-time: Arsenal 2-2 Crystal Palace

      • Early Palace corners saw Lewis-Brown’s effort from 25-yards deflected out

      • The Gunners started the second-half brightly, testing Owen Goodman

      • Just past the hour mark, Raymond secured his brace after curling one in from the edge of the box

      • Palace survived a late Arsenal push to secure all three points

      • Full-time: Arsenal 2-3 Crystal Palace

      A week on from the agonising late defeat against Birmingham City, Rob Quinn's young Eagles were back on the road to face Arsenal.

      The hosts started the game brightly, winning a succession of corners in the opening two minutes. They made their early pressure count by taking the lead through Sangoe Junior’s deflected shot.

      Palace pressed from the front as they looked to find an immediate response. David Ozoh, playing in a slightly more advanced midfield role won the ball well up the pitch and played in Ademola Ola-Adebomi. The Palace No. 9 did well to shrug off his marker, but he skewed his effort just wide across the face of goal.

      The Gunners nearly doubled their lead 10 minutes in through Marcelo Flores, as he put one shot wide, though his later effort was charged down by full-back Cameron Lewis-Brown.

      With just over 20 minutes gone, Palace found the equaliser with an incisive move from back to front. After winning the ball back inside our own half from a throw-in, Ozoh played it forward to Ola-Adebomi who in turn played an excellent curling ball over the Arsenal defence into the path of an onrushing Jadan Raymond.

      Raymond made no mistake as he latched onto Ola-Adebomi’s inch-perfect ball - driving into the box and slotting the ball past a helpless Remy Mitchell in the Arsenal goal.

      Arsenal responded immediately and reclaimed the lead almost straight after the restart, Flores found the back of the net from inside the box.

      The north Londoners’ celebrations were short-lived as it was Palace’s turn to hit back immediately. Maliq Cadogan and Lewis-Brown combined well down the right and the former floated a ball into the box which Fionn Mooney got on the end of.

      The Palace winger found himself in the right place at the right time, ghosting away from his marker to head home the equaliser from close-range at the near post.

      Not only did Palace draw level twice in five minutes, but they also reclaimed the momentum of the first-half as they pushed to take the lead - Ola-Adebomi almost capitalised on a defensive error and Raymond’s audacious free-kick from 35-yards out went just over the bar.

      Despite Palace’s determined push to get their noses in front, the first-half ended with the score locked at two apiece.

      As the grey clouds parted and the blue skies emerged at the start of the second-half, Palace looked to carry on where they had left off in the first-half.

      Lewis-Brown came closest to putting Palace ahead as he saw his goalbound effort from 25-yards out deflected out, after a flurry of Palace corners early on in the second-half.

      Owen Goodman was called into action as the Gunners attacked with intent, getting down low to save what looked like a certain goal from Amario Cozier-Dubbery inside the six-yard box and then following that up with a strong hand to deny Flores just past the hour mark.

      With 65 minutes on the clock, the young Eagles took the lead. Kadan Rodney threaded a ball towards Raymond and the Palace No. 10 worked it onto his favoured left foot to find the bottom corner with ease from the edge of the box.

      The young Eagles managed the game brilliantly after going in front, winning a succession of free-kicks in the middle of the park and also restricting the Gunners to long-range efforts. Intermittent injuries to players from both sides also helped break up the play and consolidate Palace’s lead.

      After soaking up pressure, Palace broke from a counter-attack and left-back Kalani Barton found himself leading the charge. He fired an effort from distance in an attempt to put the game to bed, but it sailed narrowly wide of the post.

      Barton was involved once more in the dying moments of the game, sliding in brilliantly with a last-ditch challenge to deny an Arsenal attack. Kadan Rodney and Joe Sheridan also did well to deny Arsenal finding an equaliser late on.

      Rob Quinn’s young Eagles held on and secured all three points after eight minutes of stoppage time. The return to winning ways sees them move to second place in the Under 18 Premier League South, leapfrogging the Gunners and reigning champions Fulham to move within a point of leaders Leicester City.

      Arsenal: Mitchell, Walters, Jeffcott, Awe (Gaspar 78), Foran, Cozier-Dubbery, Sweet (Richards 81), Sagoe Junior, Edwards, Flores, Quamina.

      Subs not used: Robinson, Kovacevic, Ibrahim.

      Crystal Palace: Goodman, Lewis-Brown, Barton, Ozoh, Sheridan, Leonard (Bartley 45), Rodney, Cadogan (Nascimento 90), Mooney, Raymond, Ola-Adebomi.

      Subs not used: Izquierdo, Bell, Dixon.