Squad One bid farewell to 2019 with a 3-0 victory against Hampton & Richmond to remain unbeaten in the National League South Division

Kumiranshe Bepe’s spot-kick was followed by goals from Rolando Onu and George Nikaj to hand White’s youngsters yet another victory.

Academy manager Mike Sandmann said: “It’s been a good start to the season.  Being unbeaten is great for the boys, but I have been more impressed with our tough to beat mentality which comes from how hard the players are prepared to work off the ball.

“We have conceded just three goals in six games, which shows our desire to defend as well as score goals.

“The division is so much more competitive this season, which will only help the players develop.”

Meanwhile, Squad Two picked up their first win of the campaign, beating Ebbsfleet United 3-2 despite trailing twice.

Two goals from Charlie Meade and Franky Nwaokolo secured a much-deserved victory.

Sandmann said: “That sort of result has been coming for weeks and I’m so pleased for the boys.  We always knew this season would be tough for them, but their work ethic and determination has been excellent and we are hoping they will continue to improve.”

Overall it has been a fantastic 2019 for the Academy.  Squad One have gone the whole year, unbeaten in the National Youth League and were also crowned ‘Champions of Champions’ in May, plus PGMOL VAR Champions at St George’s Park in June.

Some players made their debut for the first team in the Kent Senior Cup, with Marshall Wratten rewarded for his academy performances with a full-time contract.  Ryan Kingsford was the pick of the players who gained full scholarships to America and was voted player of the season in the US.

Some of our youngsters have also gone out on loan to help them gain valuable experience and each year the Academy continues to go from strength to strength.

We all look forward to 2020 and from everyone at the academy, we wish you all a merry Christmas and a happy New Year.