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Irish youngster Odubeko thanks Moyes for 'lesson learnt' in United defeat

The 18-year-old was introduced from the bench at Old Trafford, before being withdrawn again in extra-time.

David Moyes opted to substitute Mipo Odubeko in the 112th minute of West Ham's defeat last night.
David Moyes opted to substitute Mipo Odubeko in the 112th minute of West Ham's defeat last night.
Image: PA

MIPO ODUBEKO IS taking the disappointment of last night’s FA Cup fifth-round clash with Manchester United on the chin.

The West Ham striker played 58 minutes at Old Trafford after being brought on as a substitute in place of Andriy Yarmolenko early in the second half.

It was a second taste of first-team action for Odubeko, who debuted for the Hammers in the third-round win against Stockport County.

However, shortly after Scott McTominay scored the decisive goal for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side in extra-time, Odubeko was withdrawn again. Manuel Lanzini was introduced instead, but West Ham were unable to salvage their prospects of advancing to the quarter-finals.

When asked afterwards about his decision to replace Odubeko, Moyes explained that he was keen to give Lanzini, an Argentina international, a chance to impact the game.

In a social media post this evening, Odubeko showed his maturity as the 18-year-old Dubliner reflected on the biggest night of his young career to date.

“It’s an honour to get minutes for this club but unfortunately the result didn’t go our way,” he wrote. “Yesterday’s game has taught me a lot about myself and the levels I need to produce to obtain my dreams and help the team in the future.

“A lesson learnt and experience gained that I can only thank the manager for. Thanks to all the fans for the supportive messages. Time to step it up!”

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Moyes, who has spoken highly of the Ireland youth international in recent weeks, said in his post-match press conference: “He played a long time in the game but I had an experienced player in Manuel Lanzini who I was trying to get into the side tonight. As the game went on and with the substitutions, I just did not have the opportunity to do so earlier. 

“I am pleased the young player [Odubeko] got some minutes.”

Odubeko joined West Ham in October 2019, having previously been at Manchester United. The former St Joseph’s Boys youngster has represented Ireland up to U17 level.

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Paul Dollery

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