Spurs Under 23’s 4-0 Enfield Town: (match report)

Wayne Burnett’s Spurs Under 23 side played their second friendly of pre-season on Tuesday evening, when they took on Enfield Town at the Queen Elizabeth II Stadium. Spurs won the match comfortably, winning it 4-0 and playing with real confidence throughout. Spurs started the game with Thimothée Lo-Tutala in goal, whilst Marcel Lavinier, Marqes Muir, captain Jubril Okedina and Jordan Hackett lined up in front of him. Matthew Craig and Yago Santiago teamed up in central midfield, and Romaine Mundle and J’Neil Bennett played out on the flanks, either side of CAM Dilan Markanday. Kion Etete led the line for Spurs. Enfield got the game underway and Spurs goalkeeper Lo-Tutala had to gather an early delivery from an Enfield free-kick. An early effort from the potent Dilan Markanday was saved by Enfield goalkeeper Nathan McDonald, before J’Neil Bennett then had a shot blocked by Rian Bray inside the Enfield box, with the ball then coming to Romaine Mundle, who forced another save out of McDonald. It was a good start from Spurs and after Santiago had curled an effort over the Enfield goal Spurs again went in search of the opening goal. After receiving Santiago’s pass inside the Enfield box Mundle had an effort saved by McDonald before Kion Etete came very close to scoring. Markanday’s clever pass over the top of the Enfield defence was met by the head of Etete, who nodded the ball past the out rushing McDonald, but the ball was cleared off of the line by Charley O’Keefe before rebounding the ball wide of Etete.

Jubril Okedina blocked an Enfield triallist’s effort inside the Spurs box before Mundle hit an effort over the Enfield crossbar at the other end of the pitch. After receiving Bennett’s pass Markanday forced a low save out of McDonald in the Enfield box. Mundle’s flicked effort from Markanday’s following corner kick was gathered by McDonald, before Kion Etete headed J’Neil Bennett’s cross wide. After putting pressure on McDonald in the Enfield goal Kion Etete came close to winning the ball off of the Enfield goalkeeper. Marqes Muir cleared a cross from the right before J’Neil Bennett’s diving header from Marcel Lavinier’s cross at the other end went narrowly wide of the Enfield goal, in what was a great chance for Spurs. A curling effort from distance from Bennett wasn’t properly caught by McDonald, with Markanday claiming that he had been caught by the Enfield goalkeeper when trying to get to the loose ball inside the penalty area. In the 24th minute of the game J’Neil Bennett scored the opener for Spurs. After receiving the ball on the left flank the 19 year old winger came inside onto his right foot before curling an unstoppable effort past McDonald and into the right hand corner of the Enfield goal, 1-0. After Mundle had passed the ball to Lavinier inside the Enfield box the right-back hit an effort wide on the turn. Then after receiving Etete’s pass on the left side of the pitch J’Neil Bennett came inside again onto his right foot before curling a spectacular dipping effort towards the Enfield goal. His effort came off the underside of the crossbar and appeared to cross the line from where I was standing, but the officials said to play on.

After Etete played a one-two with Bennett the Spurs centre-forward finished from the left side of the Enfield penalty area with a powerful strike which came off the underside of the Enfield crossbar, 2-0. Okedina blocked an Enfield triallist’s effort soon after the game started again, before a long throw from an Enfield player fell to another Enfield player inside the Spurs box, but Marqes Muir blocked his effort really well. Spurs made it 3-0 a matter of moments later after captain Jubril Okedina flicked home Dilan Markanday’s corner kick into the bottom left hand corner of the Enfield goal. Bennett hit an effort over the Enfield crossbar from down the left side of their penalty area, before Markanday had an effort blocked inside the box. After a corner kick came to Bennett inside the oppositions box he hit an effort wide of the goal, with Spurs in full control of the game. In the Spurs box the impressive Marqes Muir cut out a promising Enfield pass, before Mundle had an effort blocked from a good area at the other side of the pitch. For the start of the second half Spurs made three changes, with Brooklyn Lyons-Foster, Jamie Bowden and Michael Craig coming on for Dilan Markanday, Matthew Craig and Yago Santiago. Lo-Tutala saved an effort from Sam Youngs, just before Spurs made it 4-0. After Romaine Mundle’s cross from the right ended up falling kindly for J’Neil Bennett inside the Enfield box the Spurs player finished confidently to get his second goal of the game, 4-0.

J’Neil Bennett hit the ball across the face of the Enfield goal from a wide position before Lo-Tutala saved Percy Kiangebeni’s header at the other end of the pitch. After Bowden received Lyons-Foster’s pass the Republic of Ireland youth international had an effort on goal blocked, and then at other side of the pitch Lo-Tutala saved Manny Maja’s effort from distance. Kion Etete had an effort saved from close range by the Enfield goalkeeper, before Michael Craig had an effort gathered by the goalkeeper. Spurs made some more changes shortly afterwards as Roshaun Mathurin, Joshua Oluwayemi, Jez Davies, Dante Cassanova, Jeremy Kyezu and Khalon Haysman came on for Thimothée Lo-Tutala, Marcel Lavinier, Jordan Hackett, Marqes Muir, Romaine Mundle and J’Neil Bennett. Oluwayemi came on to make a good save from Enfield’s triallist centre-forward from a tight angle, before Lyons-Foster hit an effort across the face of the Enfield goal. Etete hit an effort from range just before Oluwayemi saved well from Matt Walsh’s effort, and substitute Jeremy Kyezu stopped a promising Enfield attack, in what was the final piece of action from the match.

Player reviews:

  • Thimothée Lo-Tutala: The Paris born goalkeeper didn’t have an awful lot to do during his time on the pitch, particularly during the first half. However, during the second half Lo-Tutala made a small number of saves.
  • Marcel Lavinier: The right-back went on some good forward runs down the right flank and he linked up well with Romaine Mundle during his time on the pitch. 
  • Marqes Muir: The RCB was very solid during his time on the pitch. Muir blocked a good Enfield effort well and also cut out a promising attack from the home side during the first half.
  • Jubril Okedina: The Spurs captain scored a goal and also defended well at LCB.
  • Jordan Hackett: The young left-back supported J’Neil Bennett at times although he mainly stayed deep to defend.
  • Matthew Craig: The energetic central midfielder covered a lot of ground in the central areas of the pitch, before being replaced by his brother Michael for the second half.
  • Yago Santiago: Playing as a number eight Yago Santiago helped to link the play well, and he also made some good forward runs off the ball.
  • Romaine Mundle: The 18 year old right winger went on some good forward bursts out wide, and he tried his luck with a couple of efforts on the Enfield goal.
  • Dilan Markanday: The very skilful CAM looked very potent during the first half with his fine runs with the ball, and he also registered an assist and created an great chance for Kion Etete early on in the game.
  • J’Neil Bennett: My man of the match, see below.
  • Kion Etete: The centre-forward set up J’Neil Bennett’s second goal of the game, scored a well taken goal himself and also was unlucky not to score more on the day. I thought that Etete also linked the play well against Enfield as well as working hard off the ball.
  • Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: Playing as the deepest midfielder Brooklyn Lyons-Foster patrolled the midfield well and also supported Jamie Bowden when going forward at times as well.
  • Jamie Bowden: Constantly looking to get on the ball, classy midfielder Jamie Bowden tried to influence the game positively every time that he got on the ball against Enfield. He moved well with the ball and without it, and showed some nice skill during his time on the pitch.
  • Michael Craig: Hardworking and always looking to get on the ball, Michael Craig played out of position as a CAM in the second half, where I thought that he did well.
  • Joshua Oluwayemi: The 20 year old goalkeeper made two strong stops after coming on late on in the second half.
  • Dante Cassanova: The versatile player did well at right-back when coming on for the latter stages of the second half.
  • Jeremy Kyezu: The left-back helped to stop a promising late Enfield attack.
  • Roshaun Mathurin: Playing out on the left wing after replacing J’Neil Bennett, I thought that Mathurin was unlucky as Spurs didn’t seem too focus much on playing down the left hand side of the pitch during the latter stages of the match.
  • Jez Davies: The former Leyton Orient Academy player replaced Marqes Muir for the latter part of the match at RCB.
  • Khalon Haysman: The midfielder came on late in the game and looked good on the ball during his time on the pitch. 

My man of the match: J’Neil Bennett. Following on from his great performance against Ramsgate on Saturday, winger J’Neil Bennett (19) caused so many problems for the Enfield defence on Tuesday with his unpredictable play. Bennett took both of his goals (particularly the first one) really well and his driving forward runs and skill on the ball were very good indeed. He was very unlucky not to score a hat-trick on the day.

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