Norwich City Under-18s ran riot as they took a comfortable 4-1 win over Arsenal at the Lotus Training Centre on Saturday afternoon.
The Canaries got the game up to speed quickly, finding a change in the first minute. Charging down the left flank, Jon Rowe curled a nice cross into the box for Tom Dickson-Peters, who’s shot just curled wide of the far post.
That missed effort wouldn’t be much of a loss just a few minutes later when Tony Springett stepped up, however. Surging toward goal, the young forward laced the ball from distance, nestling his shot into the bottom corner.
Ten minutes later, Dickson-Peters would get his name on the scoresheet when he fired past Hubert Graczyk after finding space inside the Arsenal 18-yard box.
Sam Blair got involved outside his box when he layed a slide tackle into Arsenal’s front line to prevent them catching him off his line, the ‘keeper’s challenge clearing the danger nicely.
Dickson-Peters set himself up with his third chance of the game when he knocked the ball past the Arsenal defence and raced for the goal. The striker won the race, but his shot was just high of the target to keep the scores at 2.
Finding himself plenty of chances in the first half, it was only natural for Dickson-Peters to find his second. A sublime curling pass from Sean Stewart found the forward in the box, before he was brought down by Graczyk after rounding the ‘keeper.
Dickson-Peters stepped up to the spot, burying it with power for his brace in the first 45 minutes to round off the half.
The second half started just as the first left off, with City dominating possession. Rowe saw the first real chance of the half as he stepped up to a dangerous free-kick on the edge of the Arsenal 18-yard box, his shot high of the target.
Just five minutes later, Dickson-Peters stole the ball from the Arsenal defence inside their box, the forward’s tight-angled shot just curling away from the target.
The striker found himself in front of goal again less than a minute later, the effort once again wide of its target as it rolled out for a goal-kick.
The young Canaries had the perfect chance to make it 4-0 by the 65th minute when Rowe was brought down inside the Gunners’ area for City’s second penalty of the game. The winger stepped up to the spot, but Graczyk’s excellent double save denied him grabbing his goal.
Regardless of the missed chance, it was City who would find their fourth of the afternoon just five minutes later with a superb team goal. Nelson Khumbeni’s quick free-kick sprayed out to Sean Stewart, who cut inside and crossed for Springett, his cushioned header finding Abu Kamara at the far-post for the tap-in.
Arsenal managed to pull one back in the last ten minutes with a second-chance effort from close-range after Eddie Jackson blocked the Gunners’ first shot, but they would be held to a three-goal deficit as the young Canaries took all three points.
Norwich City starting XI: Blair (c), Jackson, Warner, Shipley (Hills, 68), Stewart, Springett, Khumbeni, Brooke (Thorn, 75), Rowe, Kamara, Dickson-Peters (Earley, 68)
Subs not used: Duffy
Goals: Springett (3), Dickson-Peters (14, 44), Kamara (71)
Arsenal starting XI: Graczyk, Awe, Bandeira, Cirjan, Foran, Henry-Francis, Ideho, Jeffcott (Ogungbo, 46), Norton-Cuffy (c), Oyegoke (Edwards, 46), Vigar (Giraud-Hutchinson, 61)
Subs not used: Mitchell, Sagoe Junior
Goals: Ideho (80)
Bookings: Graczyk (45), Cirjan (71)