Spurs under 18’s 2-4 Leicester City: (match report)

Spurs under 18’s 2-4 Leicester City: (match report)

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”In football you come up against different styles and today we came up against a style that we couldn’t live with. It’s a massive learning curve for our boys and they need to understand that this is football and you need to adapt, work out how to get the best out of games and work out how to adapt yourself to games.”(Scott Parker)

Our under 18’s suffered their first defeat of the season this afternoon, when Scott Parker’s side lost 4-2 to Leicester City at the clubs Belvoir drive training complex. I was in attendance for this mornings game, which I found to be an intriguing affair, the early stages of the game pointed towards a dominant Spurs victory after we took the lead inside 10 minutes, but it was anything but that as Parker’s  side ended up coming up against the better and more physical side on the day, though there were some very good individual performances in the young Spurs side. Parker’s lads started the game well in the opening minutes, playing a possession based game they enjoyed the majority of the ball in the early stages. The team which was made of predominantly first year scholars, looked assured and composed as they went in search of the opener. Dilan Markanday tried his luck from range early on, whilst a couple of minutes later Spurs capped off an incisive move with the first goal of the game. It had taken only 9 minutes for us to take the lead, courtesy of a fine team goal. Shashoua had done well to rob Leicester of possession on the edge of the penalty area, the ball was then worked to Reynolds who played a pass through to striker Reo Griffiths who was advancing on goal, the England youth international found the net with a clinical low drive, 1-0.

After taking the lead so early on Spurs looked to cement their authority on the game, they were dominating possession, creating some well worked chances with their quick passing game. Though there were no shots on target for either side since our opener, we remained firmly in control of proceedings, as the home side saw little of the ball within our half. That’s why it came as such a surprise when the foxes drew level on 25 minutes, Trevor Peake’s side had caught us on the break. When Tyrese Shade robbed Patterson of the ball in the Spurs half, the forward advanced on goal before swivelling past the diving De Bie to cooly slot the ball home. We responded by almost regaining the lead minutes after their equaliser, after Bowden played a lovely through ball to Griffiths but his shot on the turn was well thwarted by Leicester keeper Cameron Yates. Parker would have been disappointed when his side faced a further blow on 37 minutes when they fell behind. It was a disappointing goal to concede, there was a bit of a mix up between Dinzeyi and Omolabi as the former missed the ball when attempting to head it clear, the ball came down for midfielder Conor Tee who prodded the ball past De Bie to put Leicester ahead. Spurs had looked a completely different team since conceding the equaliser, they’d lost their composure and concentration, both on and off the ball.

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The game was in danger of spiralling away from our lads, when Leicester netted their third of the game on the stroke of half time. Midfielder Jamie Bowden had tripped Leicesters Calvin Ughelumba inside the area, with the referee pointing immediately to the spot. The centre half stepped up to put the ball past De Bie and into the back of the net, 3-1 Leicester. Bringing the half to a disappointing end after it had promised so much for Parker’s side early on. Spurs started the second period with two surprise substitutions, 16 year old goalkeeper Josh Oluwayemi replaced De Bie in the Spurs nets, whilst the impressive Jamie Bowden came off to make way for midfielder Paris Maghoma. Leicester continued to look the better side as the half progressed, they should have extended their lead shortly after the interval, when a free header for a Leicester player from the resulting cross was headed wide of goal. Then moments later they saw a powerful strike on the edge of the area dash past Oluwayemi’s right hand post. The foxes onslaught continued when one of their players (apologies, I couldn’t get a team sheet) robbed Oluwayemi on the ball, before hitting an effort at goal which was superbly blocked on the line by Omolabi.

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The pressure Leicester were putting Spurs under, meant that the inevitable was always going to happen, and it duly arrived on 58 minutes when the foxes extended their lead. Conor Tee’s in swinging free kick was met by a seemingly unchallenged George Heaven, who powered his header into the top right hand corner of the net, leaving Oluwayemi helpless. The ball was constantly being passed down the flanks by Peake’s side as they attacked on goal. Scott Parker may be the new under 18 head coach, but the bellowing voice of John McDermott (academy manager) rang out, as McDermott barked instructions out to the Spurs players, as they struggled to keep up with a Leicester team who had simply outwitted them. Parker’s side had a real go at Leicester during the final minutes of the game, a lovely bit of skill from Hinds down the left saw the fullback ping a wonderful pass forward to Griffiths who took it down well, but his resulting effort didn’t trouble Yates who parried it away. However, the game did finish on a positive note for Spurs, substitute Jeremie Mukendi forcing a fine stop out of Yates, whilst Oluwayemi produced a superb reflex save at the other end. Then as the game neared an end, prolific young striker Reo Griffiths got his third goal in two games to make it 4-2. It was a good counter attack from Spurs, which saw Patterson play a lovely weighted pass through to Griffiths from the right, the striker confidently curling home. The final score Spurs under 18’s 2-4 Leicester City.

Additional info: Our under 16’s were also playing Leicester today, they were on the pitch up from the one the under 18’s were playing on. I’m not sure what the final result was, but I noticed that first year scholar Maximus Tainnio was playing. Our under 18’s host Brighton at the training centre next Saturday, in their next game of the campaign.

Player reviews: -Jonathan De Bie: Not a lot to do in the half that he played, couldn’t have done anything to prevent the three goals.
– Josh Oluwayemi: Thrown right into the deep end on his under 18 premier league debut, made an excellent save late on.
– Matt Lock:Lock had a good game, a skilful player, he defended well down the right.
– Tariq Hinds: Really impressive going forward, created some good chances down the left flank, was sound defensively.
– Jamie Bowden: The midfielder who only played the first half, had an excellent performance in my opinion. Despite conceding a penalty late on, Bowden was a real force with in the midfield, he is a Carrick like player. Made some lovely passes from deep.
– Paris Maghoma: Really impressed me with his second half performance, added steel and leadership to the game. A bit similar to Onomah in styles of play, he was good on the ball and going forward. Got stuck in and made some fine challenges, has a brilliant work ethic.
– Moroyin Omolabi: Seems to be playing a lot at centre half now, Omolabi had a fine game, he was busy and involved, composed in play. Made a superb goal line block in the second half.
– Jon Dinzeyi: Had a decent game despite his error which lead to Leicesters first of the game. Was dominant in the air, Dinzeyi also made some good surging (Vertonghenesque) forward runs from the back.
– Dilan Markanday: The first time I’ve seen him play since the Ipswich under 15 game two seasons ago. Really tricky winger down the right flank, has really good ball control. Samuel Shashouaesque. Looking forward to seeing more of him this season.
– Jamie Reynolds: Tidy and creative performance from the midfielder, assisted our opener.
– Reo Griffiths: Top performance from the striker who now has 3 goals in 2 games this season. Lead the line well, was strong and clinical in front of goal.
– Armando Shashoua: Really impressed me today, looked a real threat when ever he was on the ball, similar to his brother in style of play. Roamed all over the park, constantly pressed the opposition.
– Jeremie Mukendi: Impressive second half cameo from the pacy striker.
– Phoenix Patterson: Eminent winger Phoenix Patterson enjoyed a fine game down the left flank. With his silky skills and eagerness to get a cross away, he was a real source of creativity with in the Spurs side. A tireless performance from Patterson, who also assisted Griffiths goal with a nice through ball.

My man of the match: Eminent winger Phoenix Patterson enjoyed a fine game down the left flank. With his silky skills and eagerness to get a cross away, he was a real source of creativity with in the Spurs side. A tireless performance from Patterson, who also assisted Griffiths goal with a nice through ball.

Spurs U18s: De Bie (c, Olywayemi 46), Lock, Hinds, Bowden (P Maghoma 46), Omolabi, Dinzeyi, Markanday, Reynolds, Griffiths, A Shashoua (Mukendi 63), Patterson. Substitutes (not used): Lyons-Foster, Statham.

 

Spurs under 18’s versus Leicester City: (match preview)

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Date: Saturday 19 August, kick off: 11:30am
Venue: Belvoir drive training complex
Head2Heads: 1-1, 2-0 Spurs, 3-1 Leicester, 1-1.

Our under 18’s play their second league game of the season on Saturday, when Scott Parker’s side travel to Leicester’s Belvoir drive training ground. Parker’s side face the foxes on the back of an impressive opening day victory (4-0) over Norwich last Saturday. Leicester also started their season with a win (2-1) away to Southampton. We beat Trevor Peake’s side 2-0 in the reserve fixture last season, and Scott Parker will be keen to replicate a similar result in tomorrow mornings tough encounter. I will be making the trip to the midlands for tomorrow mornings match, which will be my first time watching the under 18’s this season, and as always I will be providing an in depth match report. I’m hoping to see the gaffers son (Maurizio Pochettino) in action tomorrow. COYS

In other youth related news, 18 year old midfielder Jack Roles has been linked with a loan move to league 2 side Exeter City, this rumour was posted on an Exeter City fan forum. Roles is an incredibly talented midfielder who enjoyed a sensational 2016/17 campaign, it would be a fascinating loan for Roles were it to go ahead, we shall see. Exeter have a good record of developing young players at the club, for which the director of football is Spurs legend Steve Perryman.

My predicted lineup: Freeman, Lyons-Foster, Dinzeyi, Omolabi, Lock, Bowden, P.Maghoma, Patterson, A.Shashoua, Markanday, Griffiths.

My score prediction: 3-1 to Spurs.

Spurs under 21’s 2-2 Luton town (4-2 to Luton after penalties) : (match report)

Spurs under 21’s 2-2 Luton town (4-2 to Luton after penalties) : (match report)

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Wayne Burnetts development side (under 21) marked Spurs’ first ever involvement in the Checkatrade trophy, with a point away to league 2 side Luton town on Tuesday evening. Although Burnetts side put in a good and spirited performance, it was the home side who managed to get the extra point over Spurs, as the hatters defeated Spurs 4-2 on penalties to claim the bonus point on the night. It was the home side that attacked the away end in the first half which included 404 Spurs supporters, and it didn’t take long before the hatters made an impact on the game. Less than two minutes in to the game, Luton’s Elliot Lee almost opened the scoring for the league 2 side. Lee turned inside his man in the box, before trying to slot the ball in to the bottom corner of the net, but Austin got down quickly to make a sensational low save in the Spurs net. Luton were absolutely dominating play as Burnetts side struggled to deal with the league 2 club inside the first 15 minutes, it was a case of when not if they’d take the lead. Lee had another chance from a corner, when the ball fell to the former West Ham man who swiped his shot narrowly over Austin’s crossbar. We were unable to get the ball out of our own half, such was the dominance of Luton’s performance, I feared the youngsters would be getting a league two schooling at this point, they’d panicked in the early stages of the game. Then the the inevitable occurred on 19 minutes when the hatters took the lead through Maltese international Luke Gambin, the winger received the ball from the right side, he managed to wriggle away from the Spurs defence before slotting the ball into Austin’s far corner, 1-0.

However, just a couple of minutes later Burnetts side made an immediate impact, scoring level after a fine long range effort from the skipper. Pritchard who was advancing forward on goal, curled an effort from over 20 yards out which came off the post before rebounding back of James Shea and into the Luton net. After 15 minutes of being on the back foot, Spurs had managed to relax and find their bearings after equalising, they passed the ball around well and with confidence. Luton saw a free kick on the edge of the Spurs box fly narrowly ajar of the post, whilst Spurs created chances of their own as they began to take a hold of the game. Bennetts played a lovely through ball into Tracey with the outside of his boot, but the former Ebbsfleet man couldn’t get his shot away due to the sweeper keeping of Shea. Then Bennetts embarked on a breath taking run from his own area, as he surged past a couple of Luton players before skilfully taking the ball into the Luton box, his toe pocked effort coming off the right post. Though the young lilywhites had changed the flow of the game, they were still tested at the back. A mix up from a Luton corner seeing one of their players chest wide. Meanwhile Bennetts tested his luck at the other end, before Tracey’s powerful effort at goal was well thwarted by Shea.

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The second half was a more balanced affair, Spurs were more stabilised as they continued to grow into the game as it progressed. And Burnetts side started the second half in the best possible way, when striker Ryan Loft fired them into the lead on 47 minutes. Will Miller embarked on a fruitful run from the centre of midfield, as he looked to release the ball through to Loft. The towering striker was composed as he entered the area, slotting home a classy finish to put us ahead. A slightly quieter second half pursued as he we looked to keep hold of our lead. The newly introduced Josh McQuoid had a golden opportunity for Nathan Jones side when he met Jack James cross, the former Bournemouth man nodding the ball inside the post to make it 2-2. Spurs had a decent chance of their own when Miller received the ball in a good position inside the hatters penalty area, Miller looked up at goal and curled his effort over the cross bar, leaving the forward pondering. Mcquoid almost won it for Luton late on when he received the ball inside a dangerous area, but Tanganga was there in a flash as he made a superb sliding challenge. Despite the late stage nerves, we could have wrapped up all three points in the dying stages of the game. Substitute Samuel Shashoua working his creative magic down the right before crossing the ball into Sterling who forced a comfortable save at Shea’s near post.

 

With a point secured, a penalty shoot out ensued to decided who would get the bonus point. Using the new ABBA format, Spurs ended up losing in a cruel way, Shashoua’s desperately unlucky opening penalty miss setting the tone for the rest of the shoot out which the hatters won 4-2. However, it was a really good opening result for the development side as they look to progress through their group. It was a spirited and battling performance against a top league two side, but Burnetts youngsters were resilient as they carved out what could prove to be a valuable point, they can be mighty proud of their performance in this unique experience in their development. COYS

Player reviews: – Brandon Austin: Heavily involved, made many fine saves, including a remarkable reflex save in the first half.
– Jonathan Dinzeyi: Completing just over 50 minutes at the unfamiliar position of right back, the young centre back struggled a bit with the pace of the game down the flank.
– Christian Maghoma: Really impressive shift from the centre half, imposed himself well on the game. Made some important clearances, and was dominant up against the Luton forwards.
– Japhet Tanganga: As I’ve said many times before, him and Maghoma form a really strong defensive partnership. He was brilliant in the air and made some crucial interceptions. Made a magnificent challenge towards the latter point of the game.
– Keanan Bennetts: One of the star performers, Bennetts made a real impression on the game from left back. Made a huge contribution to the attack, with his pace and mazy runs.
– Oliver Skipp: Another excellent performance from the 16 year old, my motm for the second time in a week. Skipp was comfortable throughout the whole game, made incisive passes, and chased down the opposition. He was always looking for the ball, and was never afraid to get stuck in. Showed outstanding maturity.
– Joe Pritchard: The skipper had a real influence on the game, showed good leadership. Forced our equaliser with his effort on goal.
– Shilow Tracey: Didn’t make a massive impression on the game, but made some good runs down the right.
– Dylan Duncan: Created chances, prominent in the midfield, good range of passing.
– Will Miller: Created opportunities and pockets of space, assisted Loft’s goal.
– Ryan Loft: Lead the line the well, despatched his goal with real class.

My man of the match: Yet again it was 16 year old anchorman Oliver Skipp, was comfortable throughout the whole game, made some superb incisive passes, and chased down the opposition. He was always looking for the ball, and was never afraid to get stuck in, showed outstanding maturity for that of a 16 year old!

Luton Town: Shea, Justin (James 46), Senior, Cook, Mullins (c), Famewo, Gambin, Bakinson, Lee, Cornick (Read 77), Hylton (McQuoid 46). Substitutes (not used): Isted, Peck, Jones, Shamalo.

Spurs U21s: Austin, Dinzeyi (Eyoma 52), Bennetts, Skipp, C Maghoma, Tanganga, Tracey (S Shashoua 81), Pritchard (c), Loft (Sterling 77), Duncan, Miller. Substitutes (not used): De Bie, Roles.

Goals: Luton – Gambin 19, McQuoid 51; Spurs – Shea (OG) 21, Loft 47.

Yellow cards: Luton – Cook 90+2.

Referee: Craig Hicks.

Attendance: 2,699.

Penalties: Luton – Lee – scored
Spurs – S Shashoua – hit post
Spurs – C Maghoma – scored
Luton – Cook – scored
Luton – McQuoid – scored
Spurs – Sterling – scored
Spurs – Bennetts – over the bar
Luton – Gambin – scored

Spurs under 21’s versus Luton Town: (match preview)

Spurs under 21’s versus Luton Town: (match preview)

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“We’ve watched them two or three times. I watched them against Cambridge in pre-season and had them covered at Sunderland the other day, so we’ll know how they play. I know Wayne Burnett very well, Justin Cochrane also – I played with Justin – so it’ll be a good game.” (Luton manager – Nathan Jones)

Date: Tuesday 15 August, kick off: 7:45pm
Referee: Craig Hicks
Live: Follow @SpursOfficial Twitter feed for live updates.

There’s little time for Wayne Burnetts development squad to rest following their season opener away to Sunderland on Friday night, a Spurs under 21 side will make history tomorrow. When they become the first ever Spurs side to compete in this seasons Checkatrade trophy, with Spurs starting one of three group games with the visit of Luton towns Kenilworth road stadium. Burnett who has already spoken of his desire for Spurs to win the competition, must field a side that includes six players who were under the age of 21 on the 30th June 2017. Though it will be a youthful Spurs side, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a player over the age of 21 feature, possibly even a surprise first teamer, (Winks?). The last time the hatters faced Spurs’ senior side was back in the old first division in 1992, at Kenilworth road. Tuesday nights game will be very different, and I really feel that this competition will be very important for the Spurs youngsters over the coming season, it gives them an invaluable opportunity to come up against football league sides. Whilst Luton towns striker Danny Hylton will be the one to watch, it would also be interesting to see young midfielder Tyreeq Bakinson feature. Bakinson was linked with us a couple of seasons ago, it’ll also be interesting to see how strong Luton boss Nathan Jones goes against our side, Luton had people covering our PL2 game up in county Durham on Friday night. I will be reporting on the game, and as always I will be providing an in depth match report. COYS

Team news: The more experienced duo of striker Shayon Harrison and midfielder Luke Amos will miss the match through injury. Though the starting eleven could include a couple of more experienced players than usual. With centre half Cameron Carter-Vickers and winger Anthony Georgiou the most likely candidates.

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Whiteman, Eyoma, Maghoma, (c) Carter-Vickers, Bennetts, Pritchard, Duncan, Shashoua, Edwards, Georgiou, Sterling.

My predicted scoreline: 3-2 to Spurs.

One to watch: The hatters top striker in league 2 last season with 21 goals, striker Danny Hylton could play his first game of the season after returning from injury.

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Kyle Walker-Peters: One of our own

Kyle Walker-Peters: One of our own

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It’s quite a surreal feeling to see an academy player step out in to the first team, after having seen them develop through the Spurs youth ranks. That’s how it felt yesterday when I tuned in to watch our season opener against Newcastle United, where Mauricio Pochettino made the brave call to hand 20 year old right back Kyle Walker-Peters his debut in the place of the injured Kieran Trippier. Long a favourite of mine, I’ve followed the one time strikers progress from under 18 level to the cusp of the first team squad. The 20 year old who some will remember played during Ledley King’s testimonial at the Lane, was a player who I always thought would make his senior debut sooner than he did. The promising right back who has excelled at both under 18 and under 21/23 level over the past couple of seasons, is yet another Spurs prodigy that Pochettino has given a debut to. I was never in any doubt that Kyle would rise to the occasion against Newcastle, he’s a real grafter, a youngster of immense ability. Walker-Peters left Spurs supporters reeling with his performance at right back, confident and assured. The Spurs man was heavily involved in the game, he got stuck in and made some good challenges. He adapted well to the mould of our game, he was pacy, alert and by no means out of place. Spurs kicked off the new season in style with a crucial 2-0 victory over Newcastle at St James park (Dele and Davies with the goals) and the youngster who grew up close to white hart lane, played an integral part in that victory.

A fast and agile right back with tremendous close ball control, the full back has now made his first big step into the Spurs team. After years of excellent and consistent performances down the right flank, the 20 year old who was awarded the man of the match for his performance on Sunday. Is entering a hugely exciting part of his Spurs career, and after yesterday’s superb performance, I’m backing him to go on to make many more appearances for the lilywhites this season, starting with Chelsea at Wembley next Sunday. Walker-Peters who was a part of England’s under 20 world Cup triumph over the summer, is an exceptional talent and I am so very delighted for him on making his dream debut for Spurs. Whilst a lot of credit should go to Pochettino for integrating him into the first team fold, it’s important not to forget the big impact that the late Ugo Ehiogu has played in his development as a player. I think it’s fair to say this certainly won’t be the last time Spurs fans hear the name Walker-Peters mentioned this season. COYS

 

A piece on Oliver Skipp’s remarkable performance against Sunderland under 23’s:

A piece on Oliver Skipp’s remarkable performance against Sunderland under 23’s:

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I don’t often write an article after a youth game about a players individual performance, but I couldn’t not do after seeing 16 year old Oliver Skipp’s brilliant performance against Sunderland on Friday night. As Wayne Burnetts under 23 side fell to an opening day defeat, with a bitterly unlucky 2-1 loss to the black cats up in County Durham. Skipp who made his under 23 debut against Sunderland as a schoolboy last season, lined up as the midfield anchorman behind the midfield pairing of Dylan Duncan and Joe Pritchard. The first year scholar was totally unfazed by the fact that we were coming up against a host of senior players including Jack Rodwell and Papy Djilobodji. An ever present force with in Burnetts side, the youngster controlled the midfield, he broke up play when needed, but above all else it was the young Skipp’s decisiveness and maturity both on and off the ball that impressed me the most. This was by no means the first time I’d seen Skipp play, I have seen play on numerous occasions over the past two seasons. But yesterday’s game was the first time I’d saw him get a full 90 minutes against grown men. He seems to impress even more when he leapfrogs up another age group. You could easily have mistaken him for a 21 year old with senior experience, he was gutsy, making tough challenges against the opposition. It was also he’s intelligence and awareness that caught my eye. The England youth international has something about his game and that was all too clear to see. Assisting Sterling’s goal with a smart header, Skipp’s range of passing was top notch, it was deftly accurate. He has a great eye for a pass, as we saw last season with his five assists.

He was one of the most influential players with in Burnett’s side, he seemed to be everywhere Skipp was a technician with in the centre of the park. The Englishman’s stamina was remarkable for that of a 16 year old, he wore the badge on his sleeve. He operated like a young Scott Parker in the middle of the park, but he also has Carrick and Lampard styles to his game. Skipp’s performance against Sunderland was superb, it certainly won’t be his last under 23 game of this season. The fact that the 16 year old even travelled up with the squad speaks volumes as to how highly he’s rated. Our development squad return to action on Tuesday when they face Luton town in the Checkatrade trophy. COYS

 

My match report of the game: https://superhotspur.com/2017/08/11/spurs-under-23s-1-2-sunderland-match-report/

My previous article on Skipp: https://superhotspur.com/2017/05/08/oliver-skipp-the-diligent-16-year-old-midfielder-who-has-shone-for-our-under-18s-during-this-season/

Scott Parkers under 18 side get off to flying start against Norwich:

Scott Parkers under 18 side get off to flying start against Norwich:

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“I’m really happy with the lads to be fair, I thought they did really well. We’re coming off a good pre-season so it was pleasing, we worked hard and it’s always good to take on the first game and perform like that. The first half we dominated really well, the boys were very receptive of what we’re trying to do. The game faded a little tiny bit in the second half, especially the last 10 minutes when Norwich got back into it a little bit, but it’s pleasing to get a clean sheet and play as well as we did. On the scale of things, I think we probably could have seen the game right off in the first half as well.“ (Scott Parker)

New boss Scott Parker got our under 18’s off to a flying start this afternoon as they kicked off their under 18 league campaign, with an impressive 4-0 victory over Norwich at Hotspur way. The side which was made up of a mixture of first year and second year scholars, recorded a comfortable victory over the talented canaries side, Phoenix Patterson, Reo Griffiths, Jamie Bowden and Dilan Markanday getting Spurs’ goals. An impressive result from Spurs, also it was interesting to see under 16 striker Enoch Asante come on to make his under 18 debut today. Our under 18’s travel to Leicesters training ground next Saturday in a game which I will be reporting on. COYS

 

Spurs U18s: De Bie (c), Lock, Hinds, Bowden, Omolabi, Lyons-Foster, Markanday (Asante 83), Reynolds, Griffiths (Mukendi 61), A Shashoua (P Maghoma 61), Patterson. Substitutes (not used): Statham, Oluwayemi (GK).

Official club report: http://www.tottenhamhotspur.com/news/under-18s/match/report/spurs-u18s-v-norwich-report-120817/

Spurs versus Newcastle United: (match preview)

Spurs versus Newcastle United: (match preview)

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The new premier league season is upon us, Spurs play their first game of the new season away to newly promoted Newcastle United on Sunday afternoon. As Mauricio Pochettino’s side look to start the new season where they left off at the end of our last excellent campaign, which saw us finish in second place. Spurs fans need no reminding of the last time we met the magpies, the final day of the 2015/16 season was one of the most infamous days in Spurs’ recent history. Nailed on to finish in second place above arch rivals Arsenal, we were stunned by the already relegated Magpies losing 5-1. Need I explain anymore, as Spurs go in search of revenge with them needing no added motivation ahead of tomorrows season opener, up in the north east. After an eventful week which included a surprising interview involving Danny Rose, transfer rumours and the likes are irrelevant come Sunday afternoon. Pochettino’s side face an important and tough season opener against the toon army, but despite injury worries he’ll undoubtedly be confident that we can start the season off with three points. I personally feel as if we’ll start the season in the same way we left the last with, our attacking flair and formidable front line hopefully powering us to victory. COYS

The opposition: The magpies play their first game in the premier league since their relegation in 2016. Rafael Benitez’s side which isn’t massively altered from the side that won the championship in 2016/17, will be a tough first game in front of an intimidating and raucous crowd. Their main goal-threat Dwight Gayle who was their top scorer last season could start up top, but potentially the biggest threat could come from pacy and tricky Ghanaian winger Christian Atsu down the left wing.

Team news: Kieran Trippier is out inured, so Pochettino has a bit of a dilemma at right back. Does he play the experienced and versatile Dier or Sissoko, or does he give talented 20 year old right back Kyle Walker-Peters his first taste of premier league football. Whoever he decides to chose, will have to deal with the lightning quick pace of former Chelsea man Christian Atsu down the left flank. Danny Rose and Erik Lamela remain sidelined through injury, whilst Nkoudou misses out with a foot injury picked up during pre season. Though there is good news regarding Son and Wanyma, who are both in contention to make the match day squad.

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Lloris (C), Walker-Peters, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Davies, Dier, Winks, Sissoko, Alli, Eriksen, Kane.

My predicted scoreline: 3-1 to Spurs courtesy of goals from Alli, Kane and Eriksen.

One to watch: Newcastle United midfielder Jonjo Shelvey, a fine midfielder with a great vision for a pass.

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Spurs versus Norwich under 18’s: (match preview)

Spurs versus Norwich under 18’s: (match preview)

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Our under 18’s kick off their under 18 league campaign on Saturday lunchtime, with new boss Scott Parker and his players preparing for the visit of Norwich at hotspur way. Parker who hung up his playing boots at the end of last season, takes his first step into coaching with this exciting new role at Spurs. Parker’s side which includes 16 new first year scholars for the coming season, faces the young canaries in the first game of their under 18 league campaign. This new look under 18 side has some really talented players in its ranks which you can read about in my recent article: https://superhotspur.com/2017/07/18/a-preview-of-spurs-new-academy-intake-for-the-201718-season/
Along with the noted Adam Idah this talented canaries team also includes former Spurs youth Anis Mehmeti who plays as a winger. Sure to be a challenging opening day opposition, it will be intriguing to see how Parker’s lads get on. I won’t be reporting on tomorrows game (kick off: 12pm) as I will be reporting on our under 23’s encounter with Sunderland this evening. However, Spurs fans can follow the game via updates provided on the official Spurs twitter account. I’ve done a team prediction which is by all accounts a wild guess, whilst I’d expect second year scholars Jon Dinzeyi and Tashan Oakley-Boothe to play tomorrow, it’s impossible to know until the team sheet for this evenings under 23 game is announced. COYS

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Freeman, Hinds, Statham, Dinzeyi, Lock, Maghoma, (C)Oakley-Boothe, Clark, Patterson, Pochettino, Griffiths.

One to watch: Norwich forward and Irish youth international Adam Idah, Idah is a player who I’ve watched play on a couple of occasions for Ireland’s under 17 side over the past few seasons. A pacy and skilful forward, he will provide our defence with a real goal threat, a really exciting prospect and a recent addition to the canaries from Irish club College Corinthians AFC.

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Spurs under 23’s 1-2 Sunderland: (match report)

Spurs under 23’s 1-2 Sunderland: (match report)

” I said to the players afterwards, yes, we were in control of the game but when you’ve got them in your clutches you need to finish them off but we didn’t quite do that, we were a little bit safe at times but we’ll learn from that.” (Wayne Burnett)

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Our under 23’s first PL2 game of the season was one of bitter disappointment for Wayne Burnett’s side as they lost 2-1 to Sunderland at their Eppleton Colliery welfare ground, in the picturesque hills of County Durham. Spurs were for the vast majority of the game the better side, they bossed possession looked sharp both on and off the ball and could easily have scored three or four goals. Burnett’s side came up against a Sunderland team with half a dozen senior squad players involved. Our lads weren’t fazed by the numerous seasoned pros they came up against (Jack Rodwell, Djilobodji and Bryan Oviedo included) instead they took the game to the home side. We played the better football, looked the better team and above all else we looked assured and mature as a side. 16 year old Oliver Skipp putting in an exceptional display as he controlled the midfield, Tanganga and Maghoma coped very well against the Sunderland attack. And the creativity of Will Miller saw us create many a fine chance, but in the end it was the experience of the hosts who exposed the vulnerability of youth with in the key areas of midfield and defence, which saw the black cats pip us to victory late on. We controlled the opening proceedings of the game, dominating possession, with centre half Tanganga spraying around a wonderful range of passes from the back. Our first clear cut chance of the game seeing, Sterling enter the box before having his shot blocked by a last ditch challenge.

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Minutes later another half chance presented itself for the lilywhites, winger Will Miller cutting inside on to his right foot on the edge of the area, before Ruiter got down to tip his curling effort away from danger. The home side then went close at the other end when Gooch (who played in Sunderland’s league cup game last night) curled an effort narrowly wide of Austin’s angle. Then soon afterwards the American youth international managed to get the wrong side of Maghoma in the Spurs penalty area as he advanced one on one with Austin, his low effort kept out by a fine save from Austin. Then on the half hour mark we created a fine chance of our own, starting with a tackle won by Skipp in the centre of the park. Skipp passed to Sterling who powered forward before playing the ball out wide, which eventually came across to Duncan on the edge of the box who dragged the ball wide of the post. Burnetts side continued to go on the offensive, left back Jaden Brown who had been so impressive in the first half, went on a surging run down the left wing as he advanced into the Sunderland penalty area, where despite being challenged Brown hit a low shot which dashed past the face of the goal. Spurs’ attacking prowess and incisive play was rewarded less then a minute later when striker Kazaiah Sterling put Spurs into the lead. Skipp powered a header forward to Sterling, after capitalising on the back of a poor Sunderland clearance. Sterling gave the Sunderland defender a clean set of heels before calmly slotting the ball past Ruiter and into the back of the net.

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The 18 year old striker had the chance to double our lead on the stroke of half time, Sterling rounded Dutch goalkeeper Robin Ruiter just outside the box, but he didn’t end up going for goal as a Sunderland defender intercepted the ball. The home side came out for the second half looking the better of the two sides, Sunderland’s Andrew Nelson lashing the ball over Austin’s crossbar from the edge of the box, straight after the restart. Before Ethan Robson then tested the goalkeeper with a rasping free kick, Austin doing well to tip the ball over the bar. Sunderland’s revitalised second half performance was almost cancelled out on 65 minutes. When Will Miller’s well crafted free kick was superbly met by Tanganga, whose looping header cannoned against the underneath of the crossbar, it looked as if it was a certain goal. Our impressive attacking play down the flanks continued to threaten the home side, Pritchard’s pass to Tracey down the right, saw the powerful winger have a go at Ruiter’s inside post, Tracey’s effort was deflected into the side netting. Despite the many attacks we had on goal, the home side finally broke down our strong defence when Ethan Robson drew level for Elliott Dickman’s side on 70 minutes. Pritchard made a mistake in the centre of the park when his pass was intercepted by Robson. Who surged forward before firing a low effort from 20 yards out, which flew into the bottom corner of Austin’s goal, 1-1.

What seemed a fierce clash of heads involving Oliver Skipp, saw the midfielder fall to the floor but the youngster dusted himself down and got up to shake it away. This signified his character throughout the game. We continued to go in search of reestablishing our lead, the newly introduced Marcus Edwards embarking on a mazy run into the penalty area when he was brought down by a Sunderland defender, in what could well have been given as a penalty. We looked in search of that winner but it wasn’t to come, Burnett’s side being dealt a cruel blow in stoppage time. When substitute Denver Hume got a late winner for the home side, after Hume managed to get the ball out of his feet on the edge of the box, before rifling a low effort at goal which left Austin helpless as it nestled into the bottom right hand corner of his net. Despite a good effort at goal from Ryan Loft late on, we succumbed to a cruel 2-1 defeat in County Durham. But results aside, Burnett’s team played really well and that’s what they can take away from this season opener. COYS

Player reviews: – Brandon Austin: Good performance from Austin, who made a string of fine saves, also dealt well with crosses.
– TJ Eyoma: Prominent down the right side, done well going forward and getting back to defend.
– Christian Maghoma: Typically tenacious performance from Maghoma at centre half, linked up well with Tanganga. Made some important interceptions and won a host of aerial duels.
– Japhet Tanganga: Really impressive showing from the 18 year old centre half. Superb in the air and in his challenges, whilst also demonstrating a wonderful range of passes.
– Jaden Brown: Classy shift from the fast left back, was a real offensive threat. Whilst also being defensively sound.
– Oliver Skipp: Exceptional performance from the 16 year old, he controlled the midfield, broke up play successfully, was confident and assured both on and off the ball. Made a string of top passes, whilst also going on to assist Sterling for his goal.
– Dylan Duncan: Tidy and creative performance from the promising midfielder.
– Joe Pritchard: Good performance from the attacking midfielder who constantly looked for pockets of space, whilst also showing good vision in his passing. Unlucky to give the ball away to Robson who went on to equalise.
– Will Miller: An experienced player in the side, Miller had a fruitful game. The nimble footed forward going on to be the main source of creativity.
– Kazaiah Sterling: Opened up his account for the season with goal, pressed really well and had a good game.
– Shilow Tracey: Made a good impact on the game down the right side.
– Keanan Bennetts: Impressed down the left side when coming on, went on a couple of good runs.
– Marcus Edwards: Impressive cameo, showed nice skill and awareness.
– Ryan Loft: Made a good impact up front in his short time on the pitch.

 

My man of the match: Oliver Skipp. Exceptional performance from the 16 year old, he controlled the midfield, broke up play successfully, was confident and assured both on and off the ball. Made a string of top passes, whilst also going on to assist Sterling for his goal. Skipp looked light years ahead of his age, I can’t sing his praises highly enough.

Sunderland: Ruiter, Love, Oviedo (Hume 61), Embleton, Beadling, Djilobodji, Nelson, E Robson, Gooch (Molyneux 46), Rodwell (Bale 61), Diamond. Substitutes (not used): Stryjek (GK), Ledger.

Spurs: Austin, Eyoma, Brown, Skipp, C Maghoma, Tanganga, Tracey (Edwards 74), Duncan, Sterling (Loft 74), Pritchard (c), Miller (Bennetts 66). Substitutes (not used): O’Reilly (GK), S Shashoua.

Goals: Sunderland – Robson 70, Hume 89; Spurs – Sterling 35.

Yellow cards: Sunderland – Love 75; Spurs – Maghoma 38, Eyoma 81.

Referee: Mr G Hart.

Attendance: 394.