It was a good and solid all round performance from 20 year old Spurs loanee TJ Eyoma for Lincoln City on Tuesday night, as they beat Portsmouth (Harvey White was an unused substitute) 1-0 at Fratton Park in a League One game. Eyoma operated at right-back as Lincoln lined up in a back four, and he was arguably one of their most impressive players during the game. Staying deep when he needed to, but also making intelligent forward runs on occasions as well, the England youth international completed the whole of the match. Early on in the game the Londoner did quite well to stop Republic of Ireland international and Portsmouth winger Ronan Curtis from getting past him with the ball, down Eyoma’s right hand side, and while it was nothing too important, it was good that Eyoma did stop Curtis from travelling forward with the ball. After Portsmouth right-back Callum Johnson received the ball down the right flank the 24 year old delivered the ball into the Lincoln penalty area, towards Curtis at the back post. However, Eyoma watched Curtis carefully and he got to the ball in time to make a good and important headed clearance. A couple of minutes later the Spurs man headed away a Ronan Curtis free kick from inside the box, as the game started at a good pace. The alert TJ Eyoma then did well to cut out Andy Cannon’s attempted pass to John Marquis inside the Lincoln box (Lincoln were the better team early on in the game). Eyoma was getting up and down the right flank well during the first half, and his decision making in general was good.
Portsmouth left-back Lee Brown attempted to get past Eyoma down his flank, but the Lincoln defender did really well to hold off the Portsmouth player, get on the ball and drive forward with it before passing it to Jorge Grant who was fouled by Jack Watmough, who was then shown a red card. After receiving Anthony Scully’s pass out on the right flank, Eyoma was in an advanced position and he sent in a low whipped cross into the Portsmouth box, which went across the face of the goal (the final real piece of action from the first half, that TJ was involved in). Having kept Ronan Curtis quiet during the first half, Eyoma’s first involvement in the game in the second half came as a result of him getting in an advanced position. Jorge Grant tried to slip the ball into the path of Eyoma after he had made an intelligent run down the right hand side of the Portsmouth box, but a defender managed to intercept the ball in time. Soon afterwards Eyoma cleared a free kick from Ronan Curtis, as the Portsmouth players looked for a handball, but the referee was having none of it. Operating almost as a winger/wingback during the second half as Lincoln went in search of a winner, TJ’s constant forward runs down the right flank were rewarded in the 79th minute of the game. After receiving Jorge Grant’s pass down the right hand side of the Portsmouth box, Eyoma cleverly got past Curtis before putting the ball agonisingly across the face of the goal.
Eyoma’s cross was latched onto inside the Portsmouth box by Conor McGrandles, who passed the ball to Morgan Rogers who finished from close range. Eyoma did drop deeper after Lincoln had scored the opener, as he looked to help them hold onto their lead during the closing stages of the game. The Spurs man did concede a free kick in quite a promising position for Portsmouth, not long after the game started again. However, the resulting effort from Ronan Curtis went high and wide, as Lincoln held on to claim a precious three points, in what was another good and influential performance from Eyoma.