American representation on both sides of the field came into play Thursday when the MLS Select/Generation adidas team finished its three-game visit to London
against the reserves of West Ham United.
U.S. defender Jonathan Spector
played 67 minutes and scored an equalizer in a 3-2 West Ham victory that featured two-goal games for
of the San Jose Earthquakes and Fred Sears
of West Ham at Hornchurch Stadium in east London.
Somma's goals gave the GA team leads of 1-0 and 2-1 before the
fatigue of playing a third game in four days took its toll, and Sears tallied twice seven minutes apart to decide the outcome.
Somma opened the scoring in the 24th minute by playing a
give-and-go with Ciaran O'Brien
(Colorado), but Spector headed in a Matty Etherington
corner kick six minutes later to tie the game. Somma scored again in the 35th minute after
some good work by Yura Movsisyan
(Real Salt Lake), who'd been unable to play in the first two games because of some visa and travel complications. Movsisyan's shot rebounded to Somma, who
volleyed it back into the goalmouth past Hammers' keeper Marek Stech
. Abdus Ibrahim
replaced Somma at halftime but the MLS pressure continued, and Stech's saves early in
the second half prevented it from widening the lead. As the half wore on the Hammers' experience - several have played for the first team this season, though Spector has been sidelined by thigh
and hip injuries - turned the momentum. England international Kieron Dyer
started the match and came off early in the second half. He hasn't played a first-team match since suffering a
severely broken leg in August, 2007, that required three surgeries.
Sears, who has played 10 league matches for the first team this season, swept up a poor clearance to equalize in the
69th minute. Seven minutes later, he tucked away a penalty kick after Bakary Soumare
(Chicago) had brought him down.
The MLS team, which attended an EPL match and Champions' League
game during its visit and was coached by San Jose's Frank Yallop
, was scheduled to attend a Chelsea training session Friday before heading back to the United States. It lost all three of
its games, having been beaten 1-0 by Reading reserves and 4-0 by those of Chelsea in games Monday and Wednesday. West Ham 3 MLS Generation adidas 2
(Etherington) 30, Sears 69, 76; Somma (O'Brien) 24, Somma 35. West Ham United --
Marek Stech, Ashley Miller, Walter Lopez, Stephen Stranberg (Tom Harvey, 46), Jonathan Spector (George
Grasser, 67), Holmar Eyjolfsson, Kieron Dyer (Tony Stokes, 54), Jack Collison (Conner Okus, 64), Diego Tristan, Fred Sears, Matty Etherington (Yero, 64). MLS Generation adidas --
Lambo, Tim Ward, Bakary Soumare, Rob Valentino, Amaechi Igwe, Alex Nimo (Eric Avila, 53), Ciaran O'Brien (Roger Espinoza, 73), Tony Beltran, Bruno Guarda (Anthony Wallace, 65), Yura Movsisyan,
Davide Somma (Abdus Ibrahim, 46).