West Ham U21's prevail in Papa John's Trophy following victory at ME7.
Gillingham were eliminated from the Papa John's Trophy on Tuesday night following a 2-0 defeat to West Ham U21 at MEMS Priestfield Stadium.
Goals from Harrison Ashby and Thierry Nevers were enough to put the Hammers through to the next round at Gills expense.
Steve Evans, as expected, made several changes for the game with Aaron Chapman, Charlie Kelman, Ben Reeves, Olly Lee, Dan Adshead and Bailey Akehurst all making the starting XI.
Mustapha Carayol made the subs bench, with Harvey Lintott and Gerald Sithole for company.
Gills enjoyed more of the possession in the early stages with Ben Reeves’ left footed strike from 18 yards causing keeper Krisztian Hegyi a slight concern, the effort deflecting off Olly Lee before going inches wide of the right hand post.
West Ham however took the lead with their first real effort on goal when Ashby continued his run into the penalty area and, from the right hand side, guided a precise effort into the bottom left hand corner, giving Aaron Chapman little chance.
A few minutes later Chapman was called upon to make a fairly comfortable save from Pierre Ekwah, but he was beaten for a second time on 34 minutes when a ball forward was taken around the keeper by Thierry Nevers, before slotting into an empty net from little over six yards out.
H/T: Gillingham 0-2 West Ham U21
A change was made at the interval with Gerald Sithole replacing Charlie Kelman, but West Ham had the first chance of the half to add a third. Ashby forced a fine save from Chapman with the Gills keeper having to be back on his feet quickly to thwart Keenan Appiah-Forson from close range.
Sithole fired a left footed shot from 20 yards wide of the target on 57 minutes before Chapman had to be alert to gather a close range effort from Aji Alese.
Carayol, on for Lloyd, injected some pace and flair on the left wing but it was Sithole who nearly created the opening to pull one back when his drive forward saw Gills two-on-two with the West Ham defence; he did his best to find Oliver to his right hand side but a crucial touch ensured the visitors preserved their clean sheet.
Carayol had his first solo run at the West Ham defence on 84 minutes, he took on his man and headed for the edge of the six-yard box before firing a left footed shot towards goal. Hegyi came out to narrow the gap and made a good save to get the ball away from danger.
Armstrong Oko-Flex nearly gave West Ham a third goal on 88 minutes when a pass to Rhys Bennett slipped underneath his right foot; the West Ham forward advanced on goal, turned inside and out before firing a shot well off target.
F/T: Gillingham 0-2 West Ham U21
Gills: Chapman, Jackson (McKenzie 55), Tucker, Bennett, Akehurst, Adshead, Lee, Lloyd (Carayol 66), Reeves, Kelman (Sithole 46), Oliver.
Unused subs: Cumming, Lintott, O’Keefe, Akinde.
West Ham U21: Hegyi, Nevers (Simon-Swyer 77), Oko-Flex, Alese, Ekwah, Ashby, Chesters, Longelo, Appiah, Forson, Potts, Baptiste.
Unused subs: Kinnear, Dju, Rosa, Diallo, Laing, Greenidge
Referee: Mr C Hicks
Attendance: 819 (47)