Spurs under 23’s 1-4 Leicester: (match report)

Spurs under 23’s 1-4 Leicester: (match report)

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Our under 23’s were defeated 4-1 by Leicester city at White Hart Lane on Thursday evening, in what was their penultimate game of the PL2 season. It was a very tough game for our development squad on an emotional and physical level, against a strong Leicester city outfit. It was their first game since the tragic death of head coach Ugo Ehiogu, players and supporters took part in a poignant minutes applause ahead of kick off. Leicester city needed a win if they were to stand any chance of avoiding the drop, and Steve Beaglehole played a strong team which included players that had been involved in first team action for the foxes, with Poland international Bartosz Kapustka and Ben Hamer both starting. The game started with a flurry of chances for both sides, with Glover and Hamer both being forced into making some key saves. Kapustka had a really good chance for the visitors on 11 minutes when he received the ball inside the area, but his effort from close range was superbly blocked by a line of Spurs defenders. Tom Glover made an exceptional diving save to deny Harvey Barnes close range effort at his near post shortly afterwards. Openings were hard to come by for Spurs and their lack of creativity was punished on 23 minutes when Leicester took the lead through Harvey Barnes. The in swinging corner was missed by Glover with the ball falling to Barnes to flick in to an empty net, 1-0 Leicester. We went close to forcing an equaliser six minutes later, when Tracey who was one on one with Hamer had his effort well smothered by the 29 year old. We were on the back foot for the remainder of the first half, with Beaglehole’s side looking for their second. Leicester continued to create chances and tested Glover with some fine efforts.

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The first half an hour of the second half was pretty uneventful with barely any clear cut chances for either side bar a testing effort from Shashoua which had Hamer down at his near post to thwart the effort. However, it was the visitors who doubled their advantage on 76 minutes when Josh Gordon netted for the foxes, Gordon had acres of space and time on the left side of the box before comfortably slotting the ball past Glover to effectively end the game. Things went from bad to worse a couple of minutes later, when Spurs goalkeeper Tom Glover was sent off. Barnes was through on goal with only Glover to beat when the forward attempted to lob Glover from outside the box, but the Australian was instinctive and in a moment of spontaneity he blocked his effort with his hands, the referee had no other choice but to send Glover on his way. Substitute goalkeeper Alfie Whiteman could do nothing about Barnes’ resulting free kick which he curled delightfully over the wall and into the back of the net from the edge of the area. Spurs’ defeat was complete seven minutes later, when Gordon netted his second of the game. Wood’s fine pass was calmly directed into the back of Whiteman’s net by the striker to put the foxes 4-0 ahead. However, just two minutes later we clawed back a consolation goal through Marcus Edwards, after the England youth international danced his way into the box with a lovely piece of skill before being fouled by Choudhury. Edwards stepped up to convert his penalty emphatically into the roof of the net, the final score Spurs under 23’s 1-4 Leicester.

The result from last nights match didn’t matter, it was a highly emotional game and the lads done their best against a strong and well structured Leicester side. Coach Matt Wells said the following: “Obviously we’re very disappointed, not only with the scoreline but also with something we tried to concentrate on before the game in terms of delivering a performance that fitted the occasion. There was a real drive and willingness among the players and staff to make the evening special and a fitting tribute to Ugo.” COYS

Player review:
– Tom Glover: Made a couple of really good saves during the first half, his sending off was an instinctive hand ball, you couldn’t really fault Glover for his intervention.
– Japhet Tanganga: Adapted well to the unfamiliar position of right back.
– Christian Maghoma: Excellent as always aerially, was decent at the back in what was a very busy night for the young centre half.
– Filip Lesniak: Made some good challenges in what was a hardworking but tough performance.
– Jaden Brown: I was impressed once again with Brown, he was defensively solid at left back and is adapting really well to under 23 football.
– Luke Amos: Tenacious performance from Amos who has just returned from a loan spell with Southend. Amos made some crunching tackles and was tidy and efficient throughout the game.
– Cy Goddard: Had yet another good game in the centre of the park, showed good feet and made some nice passes.
– Shilow Tracey: Worked his socks off, Tracey constantly looked for pockets of space and was unlucky not to get on the score sheet.
– Marcus Edwards: The source of Spurs’ creativity, a very good performance from a very good young player.
– Keanan Bennetts: Had some good moments down the right, caused problems for Wood with his searing pace.
– Kazaiah Sterling: Sterling worked hard but was never really involved in the game due to the lack of chances Spurs created.
– Samuel Shashoua: Fresh from his stunning performance for the under 18’s last Saturday. Shashoua came off the bench to make a good impact on the game during the second half, every time he got the ball he was looking to create or go forward, he also tested Hamer with a good effort from a tight angle.

My man of the match: Marcus Edwards was without doubt Spurs’ most influential player, Edwards was the bright spark in a team that was lacking creatively. Edwards embarked on a series of skilful runs and he got his rewards late on, after winning a penalty before firing it home from the spot.

Spurs: Glover, Tanganga, Brown, Amos, Maghoma, Lesniak (c), Bennetts (Marsh 82), Goddard (Shashoua 58), Tracey, Edwards, Sterling (Whiteman 79). Substitute (not used): Roles.

Leicester City: Hamer, Johnson, Wood, Hammond (Uche Rubio 80), Moore (c), Knight, Kapustka (Kaba Sherif 54), Choudhury, Gordon, Barnes, Martis (Watts 67). Substitutes (not used): Pascanu, Iversen (GK).

Goals: Spurs – Edwards 89 (pen); Leicester – Barnes 23, 80, Gordon 76, 87.

Yellow card: Spurs – Maghoma 74.

Red card: Spurs – Glover 78.

Referee: Dean Treleaven.

Attendance: 2,226.

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