Spurs under 18’s 5-0 Preston North End: (match report)

Spurs under 18’s 5-0 Preston North End: (match report)

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Much to my delight I managed to attend today’s FA youth cup third round tie at the training centre despite there being no fans allowed in (due to the late change of venue). I was thankfully granted access by the press office, meaning that I could report on the game. And what a game it was, as a strong Spurs side managed to sweep aside last seasons surprise package Preston with a wonderful attacking performance. The visitors tried to contain us early on but it was never going to work, our lads were too strong and incisive in their play for the lilywhites. They dictated the tempo of the game and managed to break through their defence early on despite their defensive stance, it was in all truth a victory that Spurs coasted to. Due to the amounts of snow on other pitches, the game was played on a pitch which the seniors use to train on at the back of the main reception. Spurs kicked the game off in what would have been tough conditions for the youngsters owing to the bitterly cold weather. Spurs showed early signs of confidence, passing the ball around well. De Bie dealt well with a Preston cross early on, whilst the presence of centre backs Eyoma and Lyons-Foster would have put his mind at ease. The visitors were sitting deep, desperate to not let Spurs break forward. Spurs upped their pace on 15 minutes and it almost paid off. After Richards found Patterson inside the box, though Patterson could only shin the ball wide. Soon afterwards Spurs took the lead following a lovely passage of play.

The move started with the prominent Lloyd-Bennett who surged forward down the left flank beating his man in the process. The young winger delivered a low cross into the area which was met first time by the advancing Maghoma, to cooly pass the ball beyond Cottam, 1-0. Adam O’Reilly tested De Bie soon after the restart before O’Neil rounded Skipp on the edge of the area, before forcing another decent save out of De Bie. Preston appeared to be upping their game. But Spurs soon reestablished their dominance on the game, Reo Griffiths having a penalty shout waved away before Richards flashed an effort wide of goal. Spurs then came desperately close to extending their lead, when Paris Maghoma’s brilliant dipping long range effort, came crashing off the crossbar. The game had gathered at a frantic pace it had really opened up, Jamie Reynolds was forced into making an important interception back in the Spurs end, whilst Spurs looked to catch Preston on the counter, it was a recurring theme. The lively Rodel Richards showed good foot work inside the box before forcing Cottam into making a fine save, Richards was involved again moments later. The young forward cutting inside from the right before laying the ball off to Patterson whose goal bound effort was blocked.

Parker’s side knew that they had to get that second goal, and the warning signs were there. Most notably when Oscar O’Neils effort flew just wide for the visitors. Spurs were piling the pressure on to the championship club as the half neared an end, Patterson seeing his flying volley blocked by a Preston defender. Before a key moment in the game occurred, when Spurs deservedly doubled their lead at the perfect time. It was another well worked move which led to the goal, instigated by Paris Maghoma. Who slid the ball down the right channel to Griffiths, the striker looked up at goal before whipping a low cross into the danger area. Rodel Richards was alert to it, managing to get to the ball before his opposite number, the 16 year old prodded the ball home, 2-0. Spurs almost added to their lead on the stroke of halftime, after Skipp embarked on a brilliant forward run, the experienced development squad player played a pass through to Griffiths inside the box. Though the strikers low effort was saved by the feet of Cottam. The first chance of the second half came to the visitors, Jonathan De Bie being called into action to deal with a thumping effort from distance. Preston’s resurgence wasn’t to last long, Oliver Skipp embarked on another great forward run shortly before Phoenix Patterson’s low effort was saved by James Cottam.

Spurs’ dominance on the game was duly rewarded on 52 minutes as Scott Parker’s team grabbed their third of the game. It was yet another lovely attacking move, it started off with Reynolds who clipped a low cross into the box which resulted in Griffith’s receiving the ball, his close range effort being well blocked by Cottam. With the loose ball being picked up by Patterson on the edge of the area, the midfielder showed great composure to calmly curl the ball home despite being hounded by Preston defenders, Preston were unable to cope with the pace of the game. Preston were gifted a rare chance on the hour mark after Eyoma conceded a dangerous free kick on the edge of the box. Michael Howards excellent free kick flying narrowly over De Bie’s crossbar. Spurs put the game to bed a couple of minutes later, the influential Lloyd-Bennett once again playing a big part in the goal. After some good build up play Lloyd-Bennett picked the ball up down the left before charging forward clipping in a nice cross to the far post, which was nodded home by Richards, 4-0. Parker’s side were being allowed time on the ball as the visitors tired it was all looking a bit too easy for his team. However they would have pulled a goal back through Adam O’Reilly were it not for the heroics of De Bie, who spectacularly saved the forwards dipping long range effort, which seemed certain to go inside the top corner.

Lloyd-Bennett forced a good stop out of Cottam soon after, before Spurs managed to put the icing on top of the cake with their fifth goal of the game. It was a goal to cherish from the hat trick hero, starting in midfield with Maghoma who produced a lovely pass to find substitute Markanday down the right. Markanday rolled the ball across to Richards inside the box, he then pulled of a series of Villaesque dribbles evading the defenders in the process. Before finally tucking the ball past Cottam and into the back of the net, 5-0! Markanday almost pulled off a late wonder goal after embarking on a jinking run, but Spurs would have just been happy with the five goals and a place in the fourth round. Where an away tie with Bournemouth awaits the lads. COYS

 

Player reviews: – Jonathan De Bie: Not too involved, due to our dominance on the game, but he was sound throughout especially in dealing with corners and set pieces, made a world class save during the second half.
– Tariq Hinds: Solid and good going forward, didn’t put a foot wrong.
– Jamie Reynolds: Another excellent performance from Reynolds at left back, made some important interceptions/clearances. As well as producing some really good passes and crosses. Very tidy player.
– Oliver Skipp: What can I say that hasn’t already been said about this young man! Dropping back down to the 18’s, Skipp’s exposure to the development squad was plain to see. He was an engine in the midfield, he also done very well going forward.
– TJ Eyoma: Another who dropped down a level today, Eyoma didn’t give the Preston forwards a sniff throughout the game. He was rock solid and decisive when it mattered. Also dominant in the air.
– Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: Similarly excellent, Lyons-Foster was cool and composed throughout. Decisive and intelligent in his play I don’t remember him making a single mistake.
– Rodel Richards: My motm (see below).
– P.Maghoma: Terrific display from the exciting midfielder, played a big part in three of our goals including his own well taken finish. He was excellent on the ball, his weight of pass second to none.
– Reo Griffiths: The Preston defenders couldn’t handle the Spurs strikers power and pace. He gave them a torrid time all game, held the ball up really well, looked sharp and made good runs in between the defenders. Also laid off two goals.
– J’neil Lloyd Bennett: Another start for the schoolboy and yet another terrific performance by the winger. He just wanted to run at the fullbacks, and quite simply they couldn’t cope with him. Created two of our goals. Beginning to look like a special talent.
– Phoenix Patterson: Put in a great shift in midfield, nimble footed and creative. Patterson carried the ball well and capped off a fine display with a well taken goal.
– Jonathan Dinzeyi: Great to see him back following a lay off with injury, impressed during his cameo.
– Dilan Markanday: Another player whose returning from injury, Markanday made a brilliant impression on the game during his short time on the pitch, showed excellent ball control, went on many weaving runs and also managed to set up Richards for his hat-trick. His late solo effort was top class.

My man of the match: Rodel Richards was once again unstoppable down the right flank, quickly making a name for himself amongst Spurs fans. The 16 year old forward put in another motm performance this afternoon, sharp and creative down the flank. Richards provided plenty of flare down the wing with his excellent close ballcontrol and skill. Constantly tracked back, looked to make space and most importantly of all he was clinical in front of goal. Bagging his second hat trick of the season, his last goal was truly special!

 

Under 18 Goals scored this season: Reo Griffiths-11
Phoenix Patterson-4
Dilan Markanday- 3
Jamie Bowden- 1
Moroyin Omolabi-1
Rayan Clarke-1
Maurizio Pochettino-1
Paris Maghoma-2
Rodel Richards-6
J’neill Lloyd-Bennett-1
TJ Eyoma-1

Assists: Phoenix Patterson- 5
Jamie Bowden-1
Matt Lock- 2
Jeremie Mukendi-2
Jamie Reynolds-1
Reo Griffiths-5
J’neill Lloyd-Bennett-4
Rayan Clarke-2
Rodel Richards-1
Dilan Markanday-1

Interesting stat: Schoolboy J’neil Lloyd Bennett has now featured 5 times for the under 18’s this campaign, playing a direct part in five goals!

Spurs: De Bie (c), Hinds (Dinzeyi 72), Reynolds, Skipp (Bowden 81), Eyoma, Lyons-Foster, Richards, P Maghoma, Griffiths, Patterson (Markanday 66), Bennett. Substitutes (not used): Oluwayemi, A Shashoua.

Preston North End: Cottam, Fensome (c), Campbell, Baxter, Stead, Lyons, Smart (Wood 56), O’Neil, Garstang (Walker 56), O’Reilly, Howard (Brannigan 81). Substitutes (not used): Lenton, Armer.

Goals: Spurs – Maghoma 19, Richards 39, 64, 84, Patterson 52.

Yellow cards: Preston – Lyons 63.

Referee: Ivan Gelov.

Attendance: 78

Spurs under 18’s versus Preston North End: (match preview)

Spurs under 18’s versus Preston North End: (match preview)

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Whilst it’s by no means certain that Spurs’ 3rd Round FA youth cup tie will go ahead on Tuesday evening, owing to the adverse weather conditions, I’ll write my preview regardless and then update it if needs be. I phoned Stevenage this afternoon and they told me that they were unsure whether the game will go ahead, there’ll be a pitch inspection at 1 pm which will decide whether or not the game will go ahead. Focusing on the game, Scott Parker’s side will have been relishing the chance to play in the FA youth cup ever since they signed their scholarships, the most prestigious youth competition in the country, they’ll need no history lessons about the importance of this competition and what it means to the club. Being played at Stevenage’s Lamex stadium, Spurs will be hoping to replicate the successes of last seasons under 18 team, who enjoyed a good cup run before being knocked out in the semis by Chelsea. Tomorrows game will see the Lilywhites take on the Lilywhites. And one thing that Parker’s side can’t be going into this game is complacent, Preston may have an academy ranking much lower than ours, whilst the championship club will have nothing like the resources that our club possesses. But one thing they are sure to have is spirit, Preston were one of the surprise packages of last seasons campaign, managing to reach the quarter finals where they were only narrowly beaten by Stoke, they also managed to be Everton en route to the last 8.

I’m really excited for tomorrows game and I’m sure our lads are too, it’s a special opportunity and it will also provide the youngsters with a rare chance of playing in front of a crowd, who no doubt will all be behind them. I’m predicting Parker to field a very strong side, there may even be space for some of our younger development squad players, I’m confident Samuel Shashoua and some of the other youngsters are all still eligible. COYS

My predicted lineup: De Bie(c), Hinds, Lyons-Foster, Statham, Reynolds, Bowden, P.Maghoma, Richards, A.Shashoua, P.Patterson, Griffiths.

Subs from: Oluwayemi, Pochettino, Clarke, Markanday, Lloyd-Bennett.

Doubtful: Moroyin Omolabi, Jonathan Dinzeyi, Charlie Freeman, Elliot Thorpe and Matt Lock.

One to watch: Preston’s Liverpudlian forward, Darren Branigan.

My score prediction: 5-1 to Spurs.

An interesting read about a famous FA youth cup campaign that Spurs endured in the 1970’s : https://superhotspur.com/2017/11/19/the-forgotten-story-of-spurs-famous-fa-youth-cup-winning-side-of-1973-74/

Spurs under 23’s versus West Ham: (match preview)

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Tomorrows PL2 game involving Spurs and West Ham United is the third meeting between these two sides this season, the previous two games have been enthralling to say the least. Seeing 14 goals, including a memorable 7-2 victory over the hammers in the premier league international cup back in September. Both sides are in bad form, with neither managing to record a victory in there last 5 matches. Though it is Terry Westley’s hammers side who are doing better then Spurs in the league, currently occupying a healthy 5th place, whilst Burnett’s team languish in the relegation zone. Looking to change all that, Burnett’s side will hopefully take the game to the hammers like they so often do on away games, with there being added incentive on this occasion. Having already seen them twice this season, the players that I’d be most wary of are – striker Toni Martinez, talented goalkeeper Nathan Trott and hammers centre half Olatunji Akinola, whose a threat from corners. Though of course, there’s always the possibly that Westley will field a couple of fringe players from Moyes’ senior side. I will be reporting on tomorrow evenings game (kick off: 7:00pm) which will take place at Dagenham and Redbridge’s Chigwell construction stadium, weather permitting! Then the follow night (providing there are no postponements) I’ll be in Stevenage for our FA Youth cup third round tie against Preston. COYS

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Whiteman, Marsh, C.Maghoma, Tanganga, Bennetts, Pritchard(c), Amos, Edwards, Harrison, S.Shashoua, Sterling.

Subs from: Austin, Brown, Tracey, Loft, Skipp.

Doubtful: Dylan Duncan, Nick Tsaroulla and Jonathan Dinzeyi.

My score prediction: 3-2 to Spurs.

One to watch: Toni Martinez. The up and coming Spanish striker has been in fine form for the development squad this season, netting 8 goals in 11 league games. He has also made the bench for the senior team in recent weeks, Martinez is a strong and clinical target man.

Spurs u18’s 4-4 Chelsea: Thriller at Hotspur Way!

Spurs u18’s 4-4 Chelsea: Thriller at Hotspur Way!

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Our under 18’s were involved in a thrilling London Derby at Hotspur way this morning with rivals Chelsea. Unfortunately I was unable to make the game in the end, but I heard first hand how enthralling a game it was, particularly in the first half where Spurs put in a lovely attacking display. Despite leading 4-2 Spurs were pegged back by Chelsea resulting in a slightly frustrating draw, our goals came from – Griffiths x2, Eyoma and an own goal, all of this seasons statistics have been updated below. COYS

Spurs U18s: De Bie (c), Hinds, Reynolds, Skipp, Eyoma, Lyons-Foster (Clarke 70), Richards, P Maghoma, Griffiths (A Shashoua 75), Patterson (Bowden 88), Llyod-Bennett. Substitutes (not used): Oluwayemi, Asante.

Statistics:

Under 18’s Goals scored this season: Reo Griffiths-11
Phoenix Patterson -3
Dilan Markanday- 3
Jamie Bowden- 1
Moroyin Omolabi-1
Rayan Clarke-1
Maurizio Pochettino-1
Paris Maghoma-1
Rodel Richards-3
J’neill Lloyd-Bennett-1
TJ Eyoma-1

Assists: Phoenix Patterson- 5
Jamie Bowden-1
Matt Lock- 2
Jeremie Mukendi-2
Jamie Reynolds-1
Reo Griffiths-3
J’neill Lloyd-Bennett-2
Rayan Clarke-2
Rodel Richards-1

Spurs 5-1 Stoke City: Son inspires Spurs to emphatic victory!

Spurs 5-1 Stoke City: Son inspires Spurs to emphatic victory!

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Any return of the Wembley curse was swept away today, as Mauricio Pochettino’s Spurs side overcame Stoke City with a sparkling display, to end there winless run of 6 league games. The first half at the national stadium was a fine performance from the lilywhites, though they lacked a cutting edge in the final third, Spurs led 1-0 at the interval courtesy of an own goal from Stoke’s captain Ryan Shawcross, following a cross from Son Heung-Min. Stoke did have their chances in the first half, various openings were created by Shaqiri though Dier and Vertonghen dealt well with the potters attacking threat. Spurs started the second half in emphatic fashion, they looked rejuvenated refreshed even. They were sharper in their passing more decisive in their play, and most importantly of all more clinical. A goalscoring rout ensued against a helpless Stoke side, courtesy of goals from Son, a brace from Harry Kane and a much needed goal from Christian Eriksen. The quality of play in the second half was second to none, the sheer energy and movement made by us was unstoppable. However, in this piece I’m going to focus on the most influential player on the pitch the terrific Son.

Son has been in excellent form over recent games he has been sharp, energetic and creative. And he showed all of those qualities against Stoke today, he was different class. He played a big part in four of our goals, his off the ball movement and ability to make promising runs gave us a different option throughout the game. Son looked fitter than any other player on the pitch, playing on the left wing he caused problems for Pieters with his searing pace and tendency to whip good crosses into the box. His positioning and awareness were both top notch, he got in to space made decisive decisions and ran at the potters defence. His goal was well taken and proved to be a decisive moment in the game, but it’s not just today where he’s been the difference. It’s been on countless occasions since he joined Spurs in the summer of 2015, where he has provided the spark in games lacking in quality, especially in the final third. Following his contribution to this afternoons game, the South Korean international has now been directly involved in 11 of Spurs’ goals this campaign. When you bear in mind the fact that he had no pre season (due to injury) as well as the fact that he had been given few starts towards the beginning of the season, it doesn’t make mean reading at all. His goal to game ratio is also one of the best in the side, but it’s Son or ‘Sonny’ as he is affectionately known who consistently provides energy to a team so lacking in pace.

He is now a player in his prime, one with consistency and end product to his game. His performance against Stoke today underlines just how pivotal a player he is to Spurs’ future success and with a busy schedule over the festive period, he could prove to be our most important player. COYS

There was an interesting article in today’s match day programme, the discussion panel which is a regular series, was all about Son. Academy starlet Samuel Shashoua had some particularly interesting things to say on him and his style of play, he sums the Spurs star up perfectly. The article features on pages 31 and 32: “Sonny offers you something different because he can play combination football but at the same time he can beat his man one-v-one either side because of how good he is on both feet. He can do a little trick or play a one-two, so that’s his main way of getting in against a deep block – he looks for little combinations, looks to try to beat his man, so he’s important and he adds another dimension. There are not many players in world football at the moment who can finish as well off both feet, so that’s a big plus for him and for the team.”

Statistics: Senior: goal scorers: Alli-6
Davies-2
Kane-18
Eriksen-5
Son-7
Sissoko-2
Llorente-1
Nkoudou-1

Assists: Eriksen-4
Trippier-7
Davies-3
Kane-4
Alli-6
Alderweireld-1
Sissoko-1
Son-4
Dier-1
Lamela-1
Llorente-1

Spurs u18’s versus Chelsea: (match preview)

Spurs u18’s versus Chelsea: (match preview)

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A busy week of youth football starts for our under 18’s on Saturday morning when they host high flying Chelsea at Hotspur Way, in the under 18 league. Although Parker’s side go into this game with some good recent form, his side will face no bigger challenge than to overcome the blues renowned youth team. Occupying top spot in the table, Chelsea have a lead of 7 points to second place Leicester. Having scored just the 31 goals from there opening 10 games, it’s fair to say that they know where the back of the net is. In addition to their goal scoring prowess including a 7-0 thrashing over West Ham last Saturday, Chelsea have conceded only 7 goals this season. With players such as Jonathan Panzo (u17 World Cup winner) the brilliant Dutchman Juan Castillo who was exceptional during last seasons youth cup, as well as the clinical Martell Taylor-Crossdsale it’s fair to say Chelsea have the best under 18 team in the country! That goes without mentioning a dozen or so other top class talents that could feature tomorrow. At the end of the day it will be a fantastic experience for Parker’s side and I wish them all the best. Due to attending the senior game at Stoke tomorrow, I will be unable to report on the whole of the game. Though I hope to be able to watch at least an hour of the game, before heading off to Wembley. COYS

Head2Heads:7-1 Chelsea
2-1 Chelsea
1-1
4-2 Chelsea

Doubtful: Omolabi, Lyons-Foster, Dinzeyi.

Some players could be rested owing to our important FA youth cup match with Preston in midweek.

My predicted lineup: De Bie(c), Clarke, Hinds, Statham, Reynolds, Bowden, P.Maghoma, Richards, A.Shashoua, Lloyd Bennett, Griffiths.

Subs from: Oluwayemi, Tainio, Pochettino, P.Patterson, Markanday.

One to watch: Former Ajax Academy player Juan Castillo will likely cause problems down the wing with his blistering pace and skill.

Spurs versus Stoke City: (match preview)

Spurs versus Stoke City: (match preview)

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Spurs’ 3-0 win over APOEL in midweek may have been no more than a dead rubber, but the win and performance alike will give Pochettino’s side confidence going into their league match with Stoke on Saturday afternoon. Without a win in their last 6 league games, the importance of ending that record tomorrow is huge, with the gap between us and the top four widening. Mark Hughes’ team are an interesting one, they play some good attacking football and have some brilliant players. But there form has been erratic this campaign and have only managed four league victories. The creativity will come from Swiss international Shaqiri, whilst the height of former Spurs man Peter Crouch and Choupo-Moting up top, will be a handful for our defence. Really looking forward to this game! COYS

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Lloris(c), Trippier, Dier, Vertonghen, Davies, Dembele, Eriksen, Son, Dele, Kane.

Subs from: Vorm, Aurier, Foyth, Winks, Sissoko, Nkoudou, Llorente.

Absent: Wanyama, Alderweireld, Sanchez.

My score prediction: 4-1 to Spurs!

One to watch: Stokes creative diamond Xherdan Shaqiri has been in fine form this season, being directly involved in 9 of the potters premier league goals.

 

Spurs 3-0 APOEL Nicosia. A Job well done!: (My post match thoughts)

Spurs 3-0 APOEL Nicosia. A Job well done!: (My post match thoughts)

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In our final champions league group game of the campaign, there was on paper little that Pochettino’s side had to gain, having already secured top spot in the group. Cypriot side APOEL Nicosia were the visitors at Wembley, with over 6,000 fans supporting them it created a nice atmosphere inside the national stadium. In all truth it wasn’t the most memorable game, nor did it see a lot of fast tempo football. None of that mattered, as Spurs took a hold of the game early on dominating possession and managing 11 shots on goal to APOEL’s 0. After going close on a couple of occasions inside the opening stages of the game, a much rotated Spurs side took a deserved lead when Fernando Llorente netted his first goal for Spurs on 20 minutes. Aurier’s fine crossed was received inside the box by Llorente, who with his back to goal managed to turn his man and slot inside Perez’s goal much to the delight of the Spurs faithful. Pochettino’s sides dominance on the game didn’t stop, Son soon made it 2-0 with a sumptuous finish on the edge of the penalty area. Whilst the hosts gave little to threaten a comeback, the defensive pairing of Sanchez and Foyth were for the most part spectators. The second half was far less entertaining, Spurs still controlled the game but didn’t create as many chances. Aurier went close soon after the restart, whilst Spurs played the possession game.

Capping things off with a third ten minutes from time when the lively Nkoudou netted his first for the club courtesy of a slight deflection from an APOEL defender. And in a night of firsts, young Kazaiah Sterling came off of the bench to make his first appearance for Spurs after waiting by the sidelines for what seemed like an eternity, it was a great moment to see! There were few other majors talking points from the game, a much rotated Spurs team got the job done with a fine performance and a much needed morale boost of a win. Juan Foyth looked nice and composed in defence, whilst Rose put in a terrific display at left back. Nkoudou had one of his best games in a Spurs shirt, carrying the ball extremely well down the left flank. But the plaudits for me, go to Fernando Llorente and Son. Llorente chipping in with a goal and assist whilst, Son provided the creativity for most of our attacking moves and also scored a lovely goal. Who do we want in the last 16 draw which takes place on Monday? Well that’s down to personal opinion, though I’d quite like us to get Porto. Attention turns to Saturday now with a crucial league game at home to Stoke, let’s hope the lads can carry the momentum into that game! COYS

 

Statistics 2017/18:

Senior: goal scorers: Alli-6
Davies-2
Kane-16
Eriksen-4
Son-6
Sissoko-2
Llorente-1
Nkoudou-1

Assists Eriksen-4
Trippier-7
Davies-2
Kane-4
Alli-5
Alderweireld-1
Sissoko-1
Son-2
Dier-1
Lamela-1
Llorente-1

 

Spurs u19’s go marching into the last 16 of the UEFA youth league in style, with 4-1 home win over APOEL:

Spurs u19’s go marching into the last 16 of the UEFA youth league in style, with 4-1 home win over APOEL:

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“It was a good, professional performance. APOEL were a team we lost to at their place so we didn’t underestimate them. Although they’ve not had great results in the group, our main focus was to get a result, we knew it was in our hands to win and confirm top of the group and I thought the lads did that very well. In the second half, we had a little bit of a scare when they scored at 3-1 and gave it a bit of a push, but the lads saw out the game and deserved the win. I never felt at any point that we weren’t in control but I suppose the goal was a massive confidence boost for them and you never know, after that, the next goal is crucial but I still felt we controlled the game and in the end showed other bits of quality which pulled us away.”(Scott Parker)

Our under 19’s cruised in to the last 16 of the UEFA youth league with a comprehensive 4-1 victory over APOEL Nicosia at Hotspur Way, yesterday. Needing a win to cement top spot, which would see them avoid a tricky play off draw, Parker’s side went for the win against a team who had already beaten them this campaign. Courtesy of goals from Reo Griffiths, Marcus Edwards, Japhet Tanganga and substitute Rodel Richards saw Spurs overcome the Cypriot side whose goal came from Adoni. Though I wasn’t able to attend the game, it sounds like it was another fluid attacking display from Spurs with a panache about their game. Something which has been so prevalent throughout this campaign, in total contrast to last seasons disappointing one. It’s been a fantastic feat to top a group which included some top class youth teams. Furthermore, Parker’s side played some wonderful football full of confidence and style, they expressed themselves really well and have reaped their rewards with a place in the last 16. Spurs won’t find out who they have drawn in the last 16 until February, with the play off round still to be played. We could draw anyone from PSG to Inter Milan. My hope is that we draw the world renowned Ajax, who we beat in the nextgen series a couple of seasons back. Crucially the game will only be a one legged affair, and Spurs will be the home team. COYS

Spurs: Austin, Eyoma, Bennetts, Skipp (Bowden 82), Tanganga, Marsh, S Shashoua, Roles, Griffiths (Richards 73), Edwards (c), P Maghoma (Reynolds 61). Substitutes (not used): De Bie, Patterson, Hinds, A Shashoua.

APOEL: Paraskevas, Kouppis, Constantinos, Stylianides, Zacharias (c), Neophytos, Sokratous (Okkaridis 46), Artemiou, Grubac, Naoum (Polikarpou 46), Andreou (Charalambous 81). Substitutes (not used): Priniotaki, Papdopoulos, Papoutsos, Veletinas.

Goals: Spurs – Griffiths 12, Edwards 29, Tanganga 43, Richards 80; APOEL – Adoni 61.

Yellow cards: Spurs – Richards 89; APOEL – Kouppis 59.

Referee: Erik Lambrechts.

Attendance: 175.

Statistics: Under 19’s: Goals: Edwards-4
Bennetts-1
Sterling-3
Roles-1
Tanganga-2
S.Shashoua-1
Brown-1
Griffiths-1
Richards-1

Assists: Edwards-5
Tanganga-1
S.Shashoua-4
Sterling-1
Roles-2
Bennetts-1

Luke Amos and Kazaiah Sterling: Some insight on the two Academy starlets braced for their Spurs debuts this evening:

Luke Amos and Kazaiah Sterling: Some insight on the two Academy starlets braced for their Spurs debuts this evening:

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There was a lot of talk about which Spurs youngsters would be included in our final champions league group game at home to APOEL on Wednesday evening. I myself went on about it in some detail in my preview of the game, predicting (as well as hoping) that the likes of S.Shashoua, Edwards and Sterling would all be amongst the match day squad, for a game which from Tottenham’s perspective they can not benefit from, having already secured top spot. It turns out that two Academy starlets will be part of this evenings squad as confirmed by Pochettino at yesterday’s press conference, tenacious midfielder Luke Amos (20) and promising striker Kazaiah Sterling (19) are both braced for their first appearance for the lilywhites. Even though it’s just the two players included by Pochettino and co, I’m absolutely delighted for the pair, who I have watched progress and develop for many years at youth level, below is some of my thoughts on the two players and some insight into their styles of play and traits.

Luke Amos: Now 20 years of age, Hertfordshire born midfielder Luke Amos looks set to make play his first competitive game in a Spurs shirt. The midfielder who joined our Academy set up from Ware youth in 2006, has risen through the ranks at Hotspur Way winning many plaudits along the way. An integral part of our talented FA youth cup team of 2014/15, Amos has also appeared on two occasions for the England under 18’s team and has gone on to become a key member of the development side. A tenacious defensive midfielder by trade, Amos enjoyed a successful loan spell at league one side Southend during the second part of last season. impressing manager Phil Brown and Southend fans alike. In my many match reports of Spurs development squad games, you’ll know from my individual player reviews that I’ll often describe Amos’ performance, as incredibly tidy/efficient, or that he broke up play really well and dominated the midfield. In fact I don’t think I’ve ever seen the youngster have a bad game, he is one of the most consistent and hard working Academy performers and that will be something that Pochettino will have noted from his time at the club. Though a versatile player, Amos mainly operates as a holding midfielder, a little like former Spurs man Lesniak in many respects. Amos is an anchor man a vital clog in a Spurs side that loves to attack and go forward. The midfielder covers a ridiculous amount of ground, presses the opposition well and isn’t flashy in his play. He keeps it simple with short passes and sharp incisive movement. He is tough tackling and determined, he isn’t the kind of player that’s going to play a defence splitting pass or one that will overplay situations with a sparkling piece of skill. He is more a player in the Wanyama mould, a player who does his defensive duties impeccably so that others can do the attacking sides of the game.

I remember Spurs legend Cliff Jones was left mighty impressed after seeing Amos play in PL2 game last season. Amos has impressed in the numerous senior friendlies he has been involved in, and with his terrific attitude and determination I’m sure that he’ll impress again tonight, if called upon.

Kazaiah Sterling: After bursting on to the scene as a schoolboy back in the spring of 2015 in the FA Youth Cup, former Leyton Orient youngster Kazaiah Sterling has been touted as a hot prospect by many Spurs fans and coaches alike. A talented young striker who has represented England at youth level, Sterling is a powerful and pacy centre forward who possesses a terrific work rate and desire to make promising runs in between the defenders. He is always on the move something that Pochettino will like a lot, but what I like most about young Sterling is his clinical ability in front of goal. He likes to finish with a hard and low effort he hits them early (like Keane) he is sharp of his mark and a real threat in the air. He shows great awareness and is a player who possesses a great goal scoring record at youth level. This season his tally for goals scored stands at 10, whilst he has also chipped in with 2 assists. His cameo for the season side in Hong Kong last season saw him net his first goal for Spurs! I was already planning on writing a much longer piece on the young striker and I will do that soon, I wish both our lads the very best of luck for this evening. COYS