City lose out thanks to Ruddock and Sadlier goalsA WEST Ham goal in either half condemned Norwich City's Under-21s to defeat in their meeting at Rush Green on Friday night.
Pelly Ruddock and Kieran Sadlier struck as the young Canaries', who didn't take advantage of some positive play in the first half, slipped to their fourth defeat of the campaign.
Josh Murphy was left out of Ricky Martin's squad with the first-team game against Chelsea on the horizon, while Jamar Loza - matchwinner in the Under-21s' last outing against Leicester City - started up front with Carlton Morris.
Remi Matthews was called into action early on, making a fine double save from Elliott Lee and Danny Whitehead before Jacob Murphy tested Raphael Spiegel with a low shot.
The hosts took the lead on the half hour in fortunate circumstances - Ruddock's cross diverted into the net off City goalkeeper Remi Matthews to earn them the advantage against the run of play.
City finished strongly but despite efforts from Cameron McGeehan and Murphy towards the end, they couldn't draw level.
HALF-TIME: West Ham United 1-0 Norwich City
Murphy was leading the Canaries' charge to get back into the game, and had a free-kick headed from off the line on 52 minutes.
However, the Hammers doubled their lead on 60 minutes when Sadlier's cross from the right was poorly dealt with by Matthews and it dropped into the net.
Whitehead then fired over as West Ham looked for the decisive third goal in the match, with City introducing Cameron Norman to try and wrestle some momentum.
It was West Ham who looked the most likely to add a third goal in the closing stages, though, with Elliott Lee hitting a good chance straight at Matthews.
His profligacy wasn't to matter for the hosts, however, as they held on for the three points.
FULL-TIME: West Ham United 2-0 Norwich City
NORWICH CITY: Matthews; McNeil, Gafaiti, Callan-McFadden, Toffolo; Hodd (Norman 73), McGeehan (c); Jacob Murphy, Loza, Hall-Johnson; Morris. Subs not used: Barker, Oxborough (GK), Young.