Under 23s promoted as Martinez goes 14 in 14


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Terry Wesley watched his young Irons gain promotion to Premier League Division One last night with the gutsiest performance in the world and said: “The boys deserve to be praised for an outstanding season.

“They’re delighted but they’re spent and they’ve given it all which shows their real character. You work with these boys every day; we know the effort they put in in training and we’ve had performance when we’ve had to dig in.”

After going one down against Newcastle at St James’ Park they showed tremendous courage and goals from Tomy Martinez clinched their place among the big boys.

And Weatley sid: “It was tough. It’s been a long year for them. They’re tired. But you can see after; we’re delighted to have won in a hard competitive match.

“Going 1-0 down, the boys had to show some character, which we did against Wolves in the semi-final, it just shows what the players are like.

And sicussing the programme facing the boys next season he said: ” If you look at the fixtures, it could be Manchester City away, Arsenal away, Chelsea at home, Everton at home…they’re tough fixtures, so we have to re-assess where we are, and they have to be ready to go at the start of the season.

“So, well done to all the staff and everybody at the Academy, but now we have to be ready for July 3.”

“Declan Rice is an immense captain and an immense leader and he’s going to have a huge future in the game, that I am sure about. He is possibly the best player in this league this year.

“Every single game the opposition talk about him, scouts talk about him, managers ring about taking him on loan; he’s had an absolutely outstanding season and you can tell how tired he was at the end. He gives everything all of the time, he’s a proper captain and a proper leader.

“Then Kyle Knoyle – who won’t be retained at the end of the season – had the option not to play, but he wanted to and he rolled his sleeves up and said he’d show people what he can do.

“And finally, with Toni Martinez, it’s a bit different. He’s gone on loan and actually scored against Newcastle for Oxford in the cup.

“This was his first game for two and a bit months, and he’s done really well to play and he summed up what he is all about tonight. His goals tally this season – 14 in 14 – is what he is all about.”

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Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!"

Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon


  • sleepswithdafishes says:

    From what Westly says Rice looks likely to leapfrog both Burke and Oxford into the 1st team squad. How we need a captain and leader at the back.
    Bobby moore was a boy captain of men, so it can be done. Of course he has to prove he is good enough for the Prem first, but by what he’s done already he looks very mature.

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