Dagenham & Redbridge 1-1 West Ham United U21s
Pre-season Match, Chigwell Construction Stadium, Saturday 30 July 2022
West Ham United U21s concluded their pre-season with a hotly contested 1-1 draw with National League side Dagenham & Redbridge at the Chigwell Construction Stadium.
Full-back Regan Clayton gave the developmental side the lead in the first half, but an own goal from Angelo Ogbonna saw the competitive pre-season game finished all square.
The Hammers handed another start to over-age player Ogbonna – who is continuing his return following a long-term knee injury.
The game commenced with a quick tempo, with both sides battling for control of possession in the opening five minutes in east London.
Will Greenidge was the man that would have the first opportunity of the game. The right-back skilfully beat two Daggers players, before firing a fierce shot down the throat of Elliot Justham.
Dagenham had a chance of their own a minute later – Myles Weston delivered a deep cross that was met by Dagenham captain, Matt Robinson – but Krisztian Hegyi watched on as his effort hit the post and went behind.
The chances were flowing for both teams – and the Hammers almost went in front on eight minutes. Mipo Odubeko peeled away from his man and prodded an effort goalward, but Justham got down well to deny the striker.
On 10 minutes, Odubeko did find the back of the net, placing the ball beyond Justham and into the bottom corner – only for the linesman to rule the goal out for offside.
The Republic of Ireland international was causing all sorts of problems for the Daggers backline with his movement in the area – although he should have done better with a header after more good work on the right from Greenidge.
The Hammers made the breakthrough that their early play had deserved on 17 minutes. Odubeko was again involved, sliding the ball back for Clayton to slot home after the full-back had ventured forward.
Kamarai Swyer would have doubled the advantage only two minutes later had it not been for a heroic block from Elliot Johnson to deny the wide player in front of goal.
After a period of very little action, former West Ham United forward Paul McCallum almost equalised against his former Club, but he could only head over from closer range.
Just before the break, Omar Mussa nearly equalised for the home side, but his dipping effort flew just beyond Hegyi’s far post.