Spurs Under 23’s 1-7 Liverpool: (match report)

Spurs’ Under 23 side traveled up north to face Liverpool on Saturday in the Premier League 2, at their Academy. Wayne Burnett’s Spurs side lost the match 7-1, in what was a very disappointing afternoon in Liverpool, for Spurs. Spurs lined-up with Joshua Oluwayemi in goal, while Dermi Lusala, captain Maksim Paskotši, Charlie Sayers and Kallum Cesay started in defence. Alfie Devine and Max Robson started the match in central-midfield, and J’Neil Bennett and Romaine Mundle would start the game out on the flanks, either side of CAM Yago Santiago. First year scholar Jamie Donley led the line for Spurs. Liverpool got the game underway. Starting really well from very early on in the game, defender Rhys Williams headed wide Liverpool’s first chance of the match, from Leighton Clarkson’s corner-kick. Then a couple of minutes later Liverpool captain Tom Clayton received Tyler Morton’s pass inside the Spurs box, but his low effort was saved by Oluwayemi. Leighton Clarkson managed to latch onto Joshua Oluwayemi’s pass out from the Spurs box, but then Oluwayemi managed to save Clarkson’s effort on goal.

Liverpool continued to play well, and after a good run down the right side of the Liverpool box Conor Bradley had an effort saved by Oluwayemi, before Leighton Clarkson managed to get to the ball, but ended up putting it wide of the goal. Alfie Devine managed to partially block Jack Bearne’s effort, which was saved by Oluwayemi. Liverpool then took the lead shortly after, as Max Woltman received the ball inside the Spurs box, before then laying it off to Northern Ireland international Conor Bradley, who managed to find the bottom right hand corner of the Spurs goal, with a low finish, 0-1. Spurs responded in defence, as centre-half Charlie Sayers switched sides with Maksim Paskotši. A good run into the Spurs box (down the left side) from Woltman, ended in him managing to get past Sayers, before finding the bottom right hand corner of the goal, with a good finish, 0-2. Liverpool extended their lead not long after, after Max Woltman passed the ball to James Norris down the left of the Spurs box, and the full-back powerfully found the far corner of Oluwayemi’s goal, 0-3.

After receiving Leighton Clarkson’s pass, Max Woltman tried to score from a lofted effort, but it was saved by Oluwayemi. Spurs tried to respond. Romaine Mundle came very close to meeting J’Neil Bennett’s low cross towards the back post of the Liverpool goal. However, Liverpool then went forward with the ball. Tyler Morton’s cross to Max Woltman inside the Spurs box, resulted in Woltman having an effort saved by Oluwayemi, before Sayers fouled the Liverpool forward inside the Spurs box, resulting in a penalty for the home team. Leighton Clarkson passed the ball into the bottom right corner of the Spurs goal from the resulting penalty kick, 0-4. J’Neil Bennett then fouled a Liverpool player and was shown a yellow card by the referee. After meeting a cross from James Norris down the right side of the pitch, Mateusz Musialowski had an effort deflected behind by Kallum Cesay. Just before half-time Rhys Williams headed a Leighton Clarkson cross towards goal, but his effort hit the arm of Jamie Donley, with the referee again pointing to the penalty spot. This time Leighton Clarkson hit the ball into the top left corner of the goal, 0-5. The referee sounded his whistle for half-time soon after.

Spurs, who got the second half underway, had made a change at half-time as Jamie Bowden replaced Max Robson in midfield. An early Jamie Bowden corner-kick was met by Jamie Donley inside the Liverpool box, and his headed effort on goal was saved by Liverpool goalkeeper Marcelo Pitaluga. A cross from the right from Leighton Clarkson wasn’t gathered by Joshua Oluwayemi, but Jack Bearne could then only hit the ball over the goal. Bowden then managed to pick out Bennett on the right flank with a great lofted pass, and Bennett then cut inside onto his right foot before finding the far corner of the goal, with a good effort from the edge of the Liverpool penalty area, 1-5. Both Charlie Sayers and Kallum Cesay received yellow cards in quick succession, before a good lofted pass from Bowden put Donley through on goal, inside the Liverpool box. However, Donley’s effort was saved by Marcelo Pitaluga. Liverpool managed to get their sixth goal of the game a couple of minutes later, after Jack Bearne latched onto a long pass and then went down the right side of the Spurs box, before finishing across Oluwayemi, and into the far corner of the goal, 1-6. 

Liverpool wanted to score more goals, and after Tom Clayton went past Devine on the left flank, Clayton crossed the ball into the Spurs box. Oluwayemi was unable to gather it, and Mateusz Musialowski ended up putting the ball wide of the goal. After receiving Bowden’s lofted pass out on the right flank, J’Neil Bennett had a deflected effort on goal saved by the Liverpool goalkeeper. Marqes Muir replaced Maksim Paskotši in defence, and then Jaden Williams replaced Yago Santiago. Liverpool went forward with the ball again, as Leighton Clarkson received Tyler Morton’s pass down the right side of the Spurs box, but his effort was saved by Oluwayemi. After Charlie Sayers stopped a pass inside the Spurs box, the ball came to Fidel O’Rourke, who finished well into the bottom right hand corner of the Spurs goal, 1-7. The referee sounded the final whistle soon after, to bring the game to an end. Spurs’ next Premier League 2 game is at home to Leicester City on Friday evening, at the Lamex Stadium.

Player reviews:

  • Joshua Oluwayemi: The Spurs goalkeeper made some good saves, and I certainly didn’t think that he was at fault for any of Liverpool’s goals.
  • Dermi Lusala: Starting the match at right-back, Dermi Lusala later switched sides with Kallum Cesay, during the second half. This was a difficult game for all of the Spurs defenders, and Lusala had a lot of defending to do, with Liverpool focusing a lot down the flanks. 
  • Maksim Paskotši: The Estonia international made his first competitive start for the Spurs Under 23 side this year, on Saturday afternoon. The centre-half completed 79 minutes of the match, and he had to defend against talented Liverpool centre-forward Max Woltman. For both Paskotši and Sayers, there were some difficult moments in the game, but then Liverpool did field a very strong side for the match. 
  • Charlie Sayers: The second year scholar and centre-half completed the whole of the match and although he did start the game to the left side of Maksim Paskotši, Sayers did switch sides on occasions during the game. On only his second ever competitive start at this level, the former Southend United player did have some difficult times during the match against a much more experienced Liverpool side, but I thought that he defended well during the second half.
  • Kallum Cesay: Starting at left-back and later switching flanks with Dermi Lusala during the second half, Cesay had a lot of defending to do throughout the game.
  • Alfie Devine: Often dropping deep in midfield to try and get on the ball during the Liverpool match. Alfie Devine started the game as the deepest midfielder, but later moved higher up the pitch after Jamie Bowden came on during the second half. Devine couldn’t influence the game in the same way that he has done for Spurs’ Under 23 side during recent games, because of the fact that he didn’t receive the ball a lot in the middle of the pitch. 
  • Max Robson: Working hard as always from midfield and trying to make a good impression on the game, midfielder Max Robson only completed the first half of todays game, and he wasn’t playing in his usual role as a CAM, but was instead in central-midfield.
  • J’Neil Bennett: The winger who started the game out on the right flank, improved a lot in the second half following the introduction of midfielder Jamie Bowden. Bennett took his goal really well. 
  • Yago Santiago: Starting the game as a CAM and later switching positions with other players during the match, Yago Santiago completed 83 minutes of the game.
  • Romaine Mundle: Starting out on the left flank as a winger, Romaine Mundle didn’t receive the ball much out on the left side, at times during the game.
  • Jamie Donley: Making his competitive debut for the Spurs Under 23 side, England Under 17 international Jamie Donley led the line for Spurs against Liverpool. Donley didn’t get great service during the match, but came close to scoring during the second half, after being put through on goal by Jamie Bowden. However, the Liverpool goalkeeper Marcelo Pitaluga managed to save his effort.
  • Jamie Bowden: My man of the match, see below.
  • Marqes Muir: The centre-half came on to replace Maksim Paskotši during the second half.
  • Jaden Williams: The late substitute came on to play as a centre-forward, with Jamie Donley moving to the CAM role.

My man of the match: Jamie Bowden. After being introduced for the start of the second half, classy midfielder Jamie Bowden got on the ball a lot and really tried to get Spurs back into the game. Providing an assist for J’Neil Bennett’s goal from a nice lofted pass, Bowden also created a really good chance for Jamie Donley. The 20 year old was always looking to pass the ball forward and he showed great vision and skill on the ball. He made a real difference to the Spurs team after being introduced for the second half of Saturdays game.

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