The Sky Blues take all three points in the opening game of the Checkatrade Trophy…
The Sky Blues come from behind to beat West Ham PL2 4-2 at the Ricoh, thanks to goals from Ruben Lameiras, Jordan Willis and two from Jordan Turnbull.
The home side looked to force the issue in the opening minutes, Gael Bigirimana on his first home start since re-joining the club last week, saw his long-range effort parried away by Swiss goalkeeper Raphael Spiegel.
It was a quiet opening with West Ham having their fair share of possession, most of it in their own half without creating anything of note. However, it was very nearly their downfall. Marvin Sordell’s continuous chasing down set up a chance for the home side. The ball fell to Ryan Haynes, and with his first touch he sent Sordell sprinting towards goal. The striker lay the ball into the path of Portuguese midfielder, Ruben Lameiras, but he was denied by another good reaction save from Spiegel.
But it was the Hammers who found the breakthrough just after the half-hour mark. 18-year-old Antonio Martinez, signed from Valencia in the summer, looked to get a shot away, and although the initial attempt was blocked, he was first to the loose ball. A mix up in the Coventry defence allowed Martinez time and space to poke the ball home from six yards.
It didn’t take the Sky Blues long to respond, though. Just two minutes later a low corner found Sordell, and although his first time shot was blocked on the line, quick thinking Cian Harries laid the ball into the path of Jordan Turnbull who opened his account for the club, firing into the top corner and leveling the scores.
Coventry continued to look for a lead to take into the break but there were to be no more clear-cut chances as the sides went in level.
With the words of boss Tony Mowbray still ringing in their ears, the Sky Blues fired into action. With under a minute played in the second half Turnbull slid in Daniel Agyei. Looking to add to his goal at Bradford, he tried to round oncoming Spiegel but the Hammers keeper denied the striker.
A minute later Coventry did take the lead. Agyei, causing all sorts of problems in the box, occupied three West Ham defenders before sliding the ball to an on coming Lameiras. The midfielder stroked a low finish back across the keeper, clipping the post on its way in and giving the Sky Blues a well-deserved lead.
With confidence flowing, Coventry looked to extend their lead. Bigirimana and second-half substitute Ben Stevenson combined with 20 minutes left to present a shooting opportunity for Lameiras. His left footed shot was parried away in what would be his last act of the game. Marcus Tudgay replaced the 21-year-old and was immediately involved. He headed a corner back across goal to Jordan Willis, who tapped in to give Coventry a 3-1 lead.
Keen not to rest of their laurels, the Sky Blues went in search of a fourth. A foul on Dion Kelly-Evans gave Jodi Jones the opportunity to deliver, and he didn’t disappoint. The substitute put a delicious ball in from the set piece and Turnbull obliged to head home in front of Spiegel for his second of the night.
It didn’t all go Coventry’s way, as with four minutes to play Dion Kelly-Evans was shown a second yellow card for taking down Hammers midfielder Marcus Browne. Kelly-Evans will miss the next match in the trophy as per new Checkatrade disciplinary rulings as a stand-alone competition.
West Ham used their man advantage to add a consolation goal with two minutes to play through Martinez’s second of the night. It was a delightful chipped finish from the edge of the box that beat Sky Blues goalkeeper Lee Burge.
However, Coventry snuffed any hint of a late fight back and saw out the remaining minutes comfortably. It was a confidant second half display resulting in a winning start to The Sky Blues’ Checkatrade Trophy campaign.
Attendance: 2,091 (98 away)
Yellow: McCann, Turnbull, Di. Kelly-Evans
Red: Di. Kelly-Evans
Coventry City: Burge (GK), Willis (C), Harries, Turnbull, Di. Kelly-Evans, Haynes, McCann (Stevenson 60'), Bigirimana, Lameiras (Tudgay 72'), Sordell (Jones 65'), Agyei.
Subs: Charles-Cook (GK), Finch, Ricketts, G. Thomas.
West Ham United PL2: Spiegel (GK), Pike, Neufville, Rice (C), Akinola, Sylvestre, Browne, Quina, Diangana, Martinez, Makasi.
Subs: Trott (GK), Kemp, Hector-Ingram, Powell, Eggleton, Gordon, Lewis.