Spurs under 18’s 2-0 Chelsea: (match report)

Spurs under 18’s 2-0 Chelsea: (match report)

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Our under 18’s faced Chelsea at their Cobham training centre on Wednesday afternoon in their penultimate league game of the 2018/19 season. John McDermott’s side put in a hugely impressive performance to overcome a strong Chelsea side 2-0, on a sunny afternoon in County Surrey to keep their hopes of winning the league title alive, going into the final round of fixtures. Spurs were once again without a number of important players on Wednesday, most notable of which was the absence our two centre halves Luis Binks and Malachi Walcott. Spurs outsmarted Andy Myers Chelsea side at Cobham by putting in a very intelligent performance against a considerably more physical opposition. As expected the ‘ Blues ‘ gave us a tough game in what was yet another fiercely competitive London Derby. McDermott’s side moved the ball around a lot quicker than the hosts, and technically they were a lot better than Andy Myers side. Defensively outstanding, the back four of Dermi Lusala, Jubril Okedina, Brooklyn Lyons-Foster and Maxwell Statham performed their duties diligently. The midfield of Jamie Bowden and captain Armando Shashoua fulfilled their roles with aplomb, while the wide men caused problems for the Chelsea fullbacks. However, it was perhaps the excellent hold up play, razor sharp movement and clinical finishing of centre forward Troy Parrott which proved to be the most important component of McDermott’s side. The Dubliner who only returned from injury last Saturday to face Aston Villa, put in another hugely impressive performance for our under 18’s and it was his two well taken goals which won the game for Spurs on Wednesday. Both sides started the game with a good energy about them however, it was Spurs who struck first. 17 year old striker Troy Parrott managed to give Spurs the lead after just 16 minutes when he finished off a fine attacking move from the young Lilywhites. After Jamie Bowden had latched onto Chelsea goalkeeper Jake Askew’s long pass, the Spurs midfielder knocked the ball down to Dilan Markanday who quickly slipped the ball into the feet of Parrott who had made a run into the Chelsea penalty area. Parrott showed lovely feet and composure before calmly slotting the ball past Askew to give Spurs the lead. 

Spurs saw more of the ball than Chelsea during the remainder of the first half but despite creating some good chances they were unable to extend their lead. Some excellent defending from the Tottenham back four managed to keep the potent Chelsea attack at bay and the ‘ Blues ‘ did manage to create some good chances to draw level. John McDermott’s side started the second half well and in the 62nd minute of the game they doubled their advantage thanks to a lovely curling free kick from Troy Parrott to net his and Spurs’ second goal of the game. Spurs continued to play some really good attacking football as well as defending impeccably against an increasingly threatening Chelsea attack. We suffered a blow ten minutes before the end after schoolboy Dermi Lusala was shown a harsh red card on his debut for our under 18’s. However, Spurs managed to reorganise their defence well to deal with some late pressure from the hosts, to record a hugely impressive victory over Chelsea as they continue their fight for the league title ahead of their final league game of the season against Leicester City, at the end of the month. John McDermott’s side lined up in a 4-2-31 formation on Wednesday with overage goalkeeper Jonathan De Bie starting in goal. A back four consisting of schoolboy Dermi Lusala, Jubril Okedina, Brooklyn Lyons-Foster and Maxwell Statham lined up in front of the Belgian. Captain Armando Shashoua and Jamie Bowden partnered up in central midfield while Maurizio Pochettino and Phoenix Patterson operated out on the flanks, either side of Dilan Markanday who played in the hole. For the second successive game Ireland under 19 international Troy Parrott led the line for Spurs. John McDermott’s side got the game underway on a sunny afternoon at the ‘ Blues ‘ Cobham training centre. Chelsea managed to create the first chance of the game after former Spurs schoolboy Armando Broja went on a darting run through the middle of the pitch before testing Jonathan De Bie with a powerful low effort. The Belgian goalkeeper managed to parry the ball before Jubril Okedina was able clear it away from danger.

After Troy Parrott had laid the ball off to Phoenix Patterson on the edge of the Spurs box, the Tottenham winger tried to beat Chelsea goalkeeper Jake Askew with a first time curling effort. However, the Chelsea goalkeeper was able to gather Patterson’s effort. A couple of minutes later Chelsea’s Marcel Lavinier attempted to pick out Marcel Lewis inside the Spurs box with a searching pass however, De Bie was alert and he managed to come out to smother the ball before Lewis could get to it. The game continued to be played at a high tempo and after Dilan Markanday had managed to find Patterson down the right hand side of the Chelsea box, McDermott would have fancied his players chances of giving Spurs the lead. However, ‘ Blues ‘ defender Dynel Simeu managed to cut the move out and clear the ball. Although Chelsea were seeing more of the ball during the opening stages of the game it was still a very even contest. After receiving Marcel Lewis’ pass down the left side of the Tottenham penalty area, Armando Broja tried to test De Bie from a tight angle but his powerful low effort went behind for a goal kick. Spurs then broke forward down the opposite end of the pitch after Maxwell Statham played the ball down the line to Phoenix Patterson on the left wing. The 18 year old burst forward with the ball before sending a teasing low cross into the Chelsea box, but the ball was cleared away by Dynel Symeu, before Jonathan De Bie managed to gather a cross from Marcel Lavinier a couple of minutes later. The confident Dermi Lusala did well to clear another hopeful Chelsea cross, this time from Thierno Ballo a couple of moments later. However, it was the wonder boys of Hotspur Way who managed to make the early breakthrough after Troy Parrott gave Spurs the lead after just 16 minutes of play. A long pass from Chelsea goalkeeper Jake Askew fell to Spurs midfielder Jamie Bowden some 30 yards out from goal. Bowden managed to knock the ball down to Markanday who slipped the ball into the feet of Parrott down the left hand side of the Chelsea box. The ice cool Irishman brought the ball forward before sorting his feet out nicely, and calmly slotting the ball between the legs of Jake Askew who had tried to close down his angles, and into the back of the net, 1-0.

Shortly after the restart Jonathan De Bie managed to comfortably gather a cross from Marcel Lavinier. After meeting Jon Russell’s corner on the edge of the Spurs box, Thierno Ballo sent a looping effort over Jonathan De Bie’s crossbar. Then, a couple of minutes later Sam McClelland nodded a corner kick from Jon Russell narrowly wide of De Bie’s goal. Chelsea continued to test the Tottenham defence and after Armando Broja managed to slip the ball into Marcel Lavinier inside the Spurs box, our young lads found themselves in a spot of bother. However, an intelligent piece of defending from Spurs left back Maxwell Statham resulted in the 18 year old managing to get in front of Lavinier to cut out the attack and clear the ball, while the Chelsea players hopes of a penalty kick were waived away by the referee. Maurizio Pochettino had a cross into the Chelsea box headed away by Sam McClelland, as John McDermott’s side looked to double their advantage. A clever move saw Armando Shashoua play a quick one two with Parrott on the edge of the Chelsea penalty area, before the Spurs captain managed skilfully dance his way around three Chelsea defenders before entering the Chelsea box before trying to beat Askew with a low placed effort. However, the Chelsea goalkeeper managed to make a smart save with his feet to deny Shashoua from scoring his eight goal of the season. Jubril Okedina made an important interception on Thierno Ballo at the opposite end of the pitch to prevent the Austrian from having a clear route through to goal. After winning a free kick out on the left flank Phoenix Patterson’s resulting delivery was cleared behind for a corner kick by Sam McClelland. Patterson played a quick one two with Shashoua from the corner before slipping the ball into the feet of Markanday in the middle of the box, but the 17 year olds first time effort on goal was blocked by Marcel Lewis with what appeared to be his arm. This prompted a couple of Spurs players to go over to the referee in search of a penalty. Shortly afterwards, Troy Parrott managed to pick out Markanday in the middle of the Chelsea box with a clever lofted pass. However, Markanday’s headed effort on goal flashed narrowly wide of Jake Askew’s goal. 

The skilful and involved Dilan Markanday managed to turn his way around Chelsea’s Jon Russell before darting towards the Chelsea box where he was tugged to the ground by ‘ Blues ‘ captain Clinton Mola before being awarded a free kick. Phoenix Patterson curled his resulting effort over Jake Askew’s  crossbar. In a late attempt to draw level before halftime, Jon Russell sent an inviting ball into the Spurs box from a corner kick. The Chelsea midfielder managed to pick out McClelland, the Northern Irishman headed the ball back across De Bie’s goal before Marcel Lewis managed to meet it and force a fairly comfortable save out of the Spurs goalkeeper. At the other end of the pitch the impressive Jamie Bowden came close to setting Troy Parrott racing through on goal after taking a free kick early. Phoenix Patterson had an effort on goal blocked by McClelland on the edge of the Chelsea box, after receiving Dilan Markanday’s pass. That turned out to be the final piece of action from an eventful first half. Chelsea got the second half underway but it was Spurs who managed to create the first chance of the second half. After Parrott managed to meet Maurizio Pochettino’s pass inside the Chelsea box, the Irishman could only prod the ball well wide of Jake Askew’s goal. Spurs continued their good start to the second half and after schoolboy Dermi Lusala played the ball down the line to Pochettino on the right wing, the 18 year old sped towards the Chelsea penalty area. However, upon entering the box the second year scholar fired an effort wide of Jake Askew’s near post. Chelsea went on a promising attack at the opposite end of the pitch a couple of minutes later. After Marcel Lavinier received Marcel Lewis’ pass on the right flank Lewis tried to test De Bie from the edge of the Spurs penalty area. However, his effort was blocked by Statham before the ball came to Thierno Ballo whose resulting effort was blocked by Lyons-Foster, and then Chelsea captain Clinton Mola curled an effort wide of De Bie’s goal. Shortly afterwards the ever impressive Jamie Bowden picked the ball up some 20 yards out from the the Chelsea goal before forcing a decent save out of Jake Askew from his powerful low effort on goal.

Despite Chelsea seeing more of the ball, Spurs were in control of the game however, McDermott’s side knew that they needed to get that all important second goal. After embarking on an excellent mazy forward run through the middle of the pitch, the skilful Dilan Markanday ended up slipping the ball into the feet of Parrott who had made a run down the left side of the Chelsea penalty area. The Dubliner managed to successfully hold off Chelsea defender Sam McClelland before curling the ball against the base of Jake Askew’s left hand post. Parrott’s placed effort then came back across goal off of the post, much to his disbelief. The former Belvedere FC schoolboy continued to be a thorn in Chelsea’s side. And after managing to latch onto Dilan Markanday’s slightly over hit pass down the left side of the Chelsea box once more. Parrott spun himself around inside of the box before curling the ball onto the top of Jake Askew’s crossbar before it went behind for a goal kick. John McDermott’s side had been knocking the ball around the pitch really well during the second half as they pushed for their second goal of the game. After Dilan Markanday had managed to win a free kick right on the edge of the Chelsea penalty area the confident Troy Parrott stood up to take it. The 17 year old looked so assured as he steadied himself, before curling a glorious effort up and over the Chelsea wall and into the top right hand corner of the goal, as Chelsea goalkeeper Jake Askew stood rooted to the spot, 2-0. As expected Chelsea started to come at our defence more following our second goal of the game. After Dilan Markanday had fouled Marcel Lewis right on the edge of the Tottenham penalty area, Jon Russell tried to beat De Bie from the resulting free kick. The Belgian could only parry Russell’s curling effort. The ball then came to McClelland whose headed effort was cleared on the line by Jubril Okedina. Shortly afterwards Brooklyn Lyons-Foster did well to block a powerful effort from Thierno Ballo on the edge of the Spurs box, before Pierre Ekwah fired an effort narrowly wide of De Bie’s goal after connecting with Jon Russell’s corner kick on the edge of the Spurs box, before Statham managed to block a shot from Marcel Lavinier inside the Spurs box. 

Spurs made their first change of the game on 70 minutes after Rayan Clarke came onto replace Jamie Bowden. Dermi Lusala did well to clear a dangerous cross from Jon Russell, before Maurizio Pochettino was replaced by Chay Cooper who went out onto the left flank. A sloppy pass from Spurs goalkeeper Jonathan De Bie gave Chelsea’s Marcel Lewis a brief view of goal however, his chipped effort on goal from 25 yards out, flew harmlessly over the Belgians crossbar. The ‘ Blues ‘ continued to up their tempo and after Chelsea captain Clinton Mola went on a driving forward run through the middle of the pitch, the central defender curled a low effort narrowly wide of De Bie’s right hand post. Then in the 80th minute of the game the referee made a very big call after he sent of Spurs schoolboy Dermi Lusala on his competitive debut for our under 18’s. After latching onto Marcel Lewis’ pass Thierno Ballo surged forward towards the edge of Tottenham penalty area where he was through on goal. However, the player nearest to him (Dermi Lusala) managed to get across his man and he eventually brought him to the ground. The referee deemed this to be a red card offence and so he showed a surprised looking Lusala a very harsh straight card. It was harsh because Spurs captain Armando Shashoua would have been able to get back across Ballo once he had got into the penalty area. Clinton Mola curled the resulting free kick narrowly over Jonathan De Bie’s crossbar. The ten men of Spurs had to deal with an increasingly threatening Chelsea attack during the final moments of the game. After latching onto Marcel Lavinier’s cross inside the Spurs box, Clinton Mola poked an effort wide of De Bie’s goal on the turn, before the alert Lyons-Foster did well to head Sam McClelland’s cross away from the danger zone. A free kick from Chelsea‘s Marcel Lewis managed to find its way to Clinton Mola on the edge of the Spurs box after De Bie had come out to punch it clear. Mola’s resulting effort deflected off of Parrott before being nodded towards goal by Ballo, but De Bie was able to make a comfortable save and he was able to hold the Austrians effort. 

Chelsea continued to pile the pressure on the Tottenham defence and after Jubril Okedina had cleared a cross from Marcel Lavinier, the ‘ Blues ‘ protested in vain that Okedina had handled the ball inside the Spurs box. Elliot Thorpe came onto replace Phoenix Patterson in the 89th minute of the game as John McDermott made his final substitution of the game. Chelsea did have one final chance to pull a goal back after Jon Russell’s stoppage time corner kick came to Ballo at the back post. He then headed the ball back across goal to substitute George Nunn whose looping header on goal was spectacularly tipped over the bar by the acrobatic Jonathan De Bie. Clinton Mola then sent a late dipping effort sailing over De Bie’s crossbar a couple of moments later, before the referee blew the final whistle. It was an excellent team performance from John McDermott’s side on Wednesday afternoon who go into their final league game of the season against Leicester City, on Saturday the 27th Of April with a good chance of winning the Premier League South. Providing that Arsenal fail to beat Fulham on the same day!

Player reviews:

  • Jonathan De Bie: The overage goalkeeper kept his second clean sheet of the season for our under 18’s on Wednesday. De Bie had a good game for John McDermott’s side and he made some important stops (five in total) and his all round game E.g his distribution, handling and anticipation was impressive. De Bie’s finest save was his one to deny George Nunn’s looping header from going in, in second half stoppage time.
  • Dermi Lusala: Although he was harshly shown a straight red card in the 80th minute of Wednesday’s game, I was very impressed with how schoolboy Dermi Lusala performed at right back, on his first ever competitive appearance for our under 18 side. Lusala who is an England under 16 international, grew into the game and after putting in a solid performance at right back during the first half he really grew in confidence during the second period. The former Brentford schoolboy went on some good attacking forays down the right flank, and his speed as well as his balance made him quite difficult to defend against. Lusala looked very comfortable on the ball and he also made some important interceptions against Chelsea’s left wing back James Clark who he defended solidly against, for the entirety of his time on the pitch.
  • Jubril Okedina: The second year scholar was absolutely outstanding at RCB against Chelsea just like his partner at centre halve, Brooklyn Lyons-Foster. Okedina was so, so impressive on Wednesday afternoon where he made a number of crucial defensive interventions. The Greenwich born defender put in arguably his finest performance of the season for Spurs yesterday, when he made his 20th appearance of the season for our under 18 side. Okedina read the game exceptionally well and his positioning as well as his intelligent off the ball work made life very difficult for Chelsea striker Armando Broja who he effectively kept out of the game. Furthermore, the 18 year old was so cool on the ball and he brought it out well from the back.
  • Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: Another Tottenham defender who put in a faultless shift at centre back was RCB Brooklyn Lyons-Foster who always managed to get himself into the perfect position across the back four. Lyons-Foster made a number of impressive blocks, clearances and interceptions against the ‘ Blues ‘ and he was dominant in the air. The 18 year olds distribution and positive forward passing from the back really helped McDermott’s side to play quicker football. Both Lyons-Foster and Okedina managed to quell the threat of Chelsea centre forward Armando Broja.
  • Maxwell Statham: Once again the makeshift left back looked right at home out on the left wing. Statham defended really well against Chelsea’s speedy wing back Marcel Lavinier and I thought that Statham made some very intelligent defensive choices throughout the match. Maxwell played with a lot of confidence about him and he made more blocks than any other Spurs player on the day.
  • Armando Shashoua: The Tottenham skipper put in a sterling performance in central midfield alongside Jamie Bowden. Shashoua’s tremendous technical ability, vision, skill and tireless running and defensive work proved to be so key to Spurs winning Wednesday’s game. Shashoua combined both his defensive duties and his offensive duties very well. Excellent at breaking up play and recycling possession alongside Bowden, the 18 year olds skill and agility helped to open up the Chelsea back three and he showed a really good understanding of the game with centre forward Troy Parrott. Shashoua created some good chances for Spurs and he came close to finding the back of the net after he danced his way around three Chelsea defenders on the edge of the Spurs box before forcing a good save out of Jake Askew during the first half.
  • Jamie Bowden: He may not have played a game of football for over ten weeks, but 17 year old Jamie Bowden looked frighteningly good when he returned from injury yesterday to partner Shashoua in central midfield. Bowden put in a very elegant but highly effective performance, and his sharpness and anticipation was superb. The Irish Londoners passing was deftly accurate and his positioning and off the ball movement was as good as ever. His presence in the team had such a big effect on the way in which we played. Bowden was tigerish and he managed to break up play well while also making defence splitting forward passes. It was so good to see him back playing again and I really liked how he played with such confidence yesterday afternoon.
  • Maurizio Pochettino: It was another good performance from Pochettino out on the right flank, and he went some good attacking forays down that side of the pitch. Furthermore, Pochettino tracked back well to help out the inexperienced Dermi Lusala at right back.
  • Dilan Markanday: The 17 year olds rich vein of form continued when we made the short trip Cobham on Wednesday afternoon. Operating as a number ten, Markanday was able to penetrate the Chelsea defence with his surging forward runs and excellent close ball control. After managing to set up Troy Parrott’s opener with a well weighted pass, Dilan then managed to win the second half free kick from which Parrott scored his second goal of the game.
  • Phoenix Patterson: The second year scholar operated out on the left wing where he put in an impressive performance. Skilful and very positive with the ball at his feet, Patterson created some good chances for his teammates.
  • Troy Parrott: My motm, see below.
  • Rayan Clarke: The winger was forced to track after him following Lusala’s sending off and I was impressed with some of his late defending.
  • Chay Cooper: The left winger stayed deep and he did some good defensive working during his late cameo
  • Elliot Thorpe: N/A (too brief a cameo).

My man of the match: 17 year old Dubliner Troy Parrott capped off an outstanding performance on Wednesday afternoon by scoring both of Spurs’ goals. Parrott was unplayable on the day and it was a performance in which a certain Harry Kane would have been very proud of. The hardworking centre forward led the line superbly for John McDermott’s side. Parrott held the ball up very well and he linked up play well with the likes of Markanday and Pochettino. However, the first year scholar played with great freedom and from a defensive point of view he was constantly getting back inside his own half to help out the Tottenham defence. Parrott was creative and he made some really intelligent passes against the ‘ Blues ‘ but it was his two goals which will get all of the plaudits. His first goal was an excellent and composed finish to tuck the ball past Jake Askew from inside the Chelsea box, whereas his second came from pure technique to curl home a free kick from the edge of the danger zone. Troy also hit the woodwork on two separate occasions and he was very unselfish with the ball. The well roundedness of Parrott’s performance makes me think that it wouldn’t be a bad idea to have him on the bench on Saturday, for our first teams Premier League game against Huddersfield at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium! Troy has now scored 15 goals for our under 18 side this season from just 12 appearances.

Spurs: De Bie, Lusala, Statham, A.Shashoua (c), Okedina, Lyons-Foster, Pochettino (Cooper 76), Bowden (Clarke 70), Parrott, Markanday, Patterson (Thorpe 89). Substitutes (not used): Kurylowicz, Pedder.

Spurs under 18’s statistics 2018/19:

Goals scored: Troy Parrott – 15

Dilan Markanday – 12

J’Neil Bennett –  9

Rayan Clarke – 8

Armando Shashoua – 7

Harvey White – 6

Rodel Richards – 5

Paris Maghoma – 4

Luis Binks – 3

Maurizio Pochettino – 3

Dennis Cirkin – 2

Jeremie Mukendi – 2

Brooklyn Lyons-Foster – 2

Phoenix Patterson – 2

Kion Etete – 2

Jubril Okedina – 1

Tarrell Whittaker – 1

Elliot Thorpe – 1

Assists: Harvey White – 12

Armando Shashoua – 12

Rayan Clarke – 8

Troy Parrott – 6

Dilan Markanday – 6

Jamie Bowden – 5

Phoenix Patterson – 4

J’Neil Bennett – 4

Rodel Richards – 3

Chay Cooper – 3

Brooklyn Lyons-Foster – 2

Dennis Cirkin – 2

Paris Maghoma – 2

Luis Binks – 2

Elliot Thorpe – 2

Maurizio Pochettino – 1

Malachi Walcott – 1

Rafferty Pedder – 1

Maxwell Statham – 1

Jeremie Mukendi – 1

Nile John – 1

Kion Etete – 1

Tarrell Whittaker – 1

Oliver Skipp – 1

Michael Craig – 1

Clean sheets: Joshua Oluwayemi – 7

Jonathan De Bie – 2

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