View: West Ham United must get Ollie Scarles to commit long-term future after stunning recent form
West Ham starlet Ollie Scarles was again on hand to help the Under-18s side claim a crucial three points, as they came from two goals down to stun Tottenham Hotspur 4-3 in the U18 Premier League South.
The 16-year-old found the back of the net to continue his terrifying form for the youth side, and The Hammers must ensure they don’t let the youngster slip out of their grasp as January approaches.
The versatile midfielder has provisionally agreed on a first professional contract with West Ham, according to The Athletic (12 October), but this is yet to be formally announced by the club.
After scoring again on Saturday (3 December), Under-18s coach Mark Philips lavished praise on the teenager’s smart finish, saying: “Ollie Scarles scored a fantastic goal to get us right back into the match. It was like an arrow, it went straight into the corner.”
David Moyes handed the youngster a first-team debut in their Europa Conference League meeting with FSCB in Bucharest earlier this season – after catching the headlines for his respective youth sides – and he played a key part in Pablo Fornals’ second goal in the 3-0 win.
Born in 2005, Scarles joined the East London club in 2005 and has made his way up the various age groups with alarming ease.
During a breakout 2021/22 season, the starlet made 25 appearances for the Under-18s, and he has once again kicked on this campaign, scoring twice and assisting five goals in just eight games.
His other goal this season drew praise from all corners of the club, as the Hammers academy prospect scored a stunning free-kick from outside the penalty area to give the youth side a crucial 1-0 win over Spurs.
Scarles has already played for England at Under-15 and Under-16 levels as well The Hammers’ Under-21s side in the Papa John’s Trophy.
After losing several other burgeoning talents from their academy in recent times – including Sonny Perkins to Leeds United and Harrison Ashby also heading for the exit – David Moyes has got to ensure they keep hold of the highly-promising teenager.