Sammy Ameobi had his admirers on Saturday but it was in front of hundreds at St James Park, rather than in front of the thousands of Newcastle fans who descended on St.Andrew’s.
A 1pm kick-off saw a rare chance for Newcastle’s Under 23s to play at St James Park and Sammy Ameobi joined them as an overage player, he turns 25 in May, a month before his contract comes to an end.
Sammy Ameobi scoring two cracking goals, both from long range.
The first in the final minutes of normal time to make it 2-2, then another spectacular effort in extra time to settle the tie.
The Newcastle United Under 23s moving through to the last eight of the Premier League Cup.
West Ham United U23s captain Declan Rice had this to say after the game, with special praise for Sammy Ameobi:
“It was very disappointing to lose this game. First half, we absolutely dominated it. Second half, we came out and didn’t play the best, but when we went a goal down it kicked us up the backside a bit.
“Luckily I was able to get a goal, but it wasn’t enough and it wasn’t meant to be in the end
“It was great to get the goal and we thought it was going to be the winner. It’s always a great feeling to score and I think you can see I enjoyed it from my celebration.
“We had about ten or 15 chances from what I remember. We also had the one where the keeper was fouled but it should have been a penalty to us. If we put that in the net then it’s a game changer.
“We just couldn’t break them down. We showed great character to keep fighting. Terry [Westley] has said he couldn’t fault our effort. We have come up here twice this week and it’s been two long journeys and we’ve worked hard for each other. That’s what we do and it shows on the pitch.
“When you get to play against players who have played over 30, 40, 50 games for Newcastle, the likes of Ameobi and Haidara, it’s a great experience and a great learning experience,” the skipper continued.
“Sammy Ameobi was very good. He’s a strong player and he is very good technically and he’s smart, too. He kept coming into pockets and he’s a good player.
“I think we just need to be more clinical to be honest in front of goal. Defensively as well, there are areas, so I guess it’s a mixture of both, but we’ll go back to the training field and go and try and get three points against Middlesbrough to chase those play-offs.”
Newcastle United Under 23s 3 West Ham Under 23s 2
Sels, Williams, Gibson, Hunter, Good, Findlay, Ameobi, Barlaser, Haidara, Charman, Fernandez