Spurs Under 18’s 2-1 Reading: (match report)

Spurs’ Under 18 side met Reading at their Bearwood Park training ground, in a Premier League South fixture on Saturday. Spurs won the match 2-1, against a Reading side who managed to create more chances than them during the game. However, Spurs defended really well throughout the match, and in the end they deserved to win, because of how well they defended. Adam Hayton started in goal for Spurs, while a back four consisting of Maxwell McKnight, Alfie Dorrington, captain Charlie Sayers and Jordan Hackett started in front of him. Tyrese Hall and Billy Heaps started in central-midfield, and Sam Amo-Ameyaw and Thomas Bloxham started out on the flanks, either side of CAM Riley Owen. Jamie Donley led the line for Spurs. Reading got the game underway. Early on in the match and after receiving the ball out on the left flank, Thomas Bloxham managed to find Tyrese Hall, who had made a run towards the back post inside the Reading box. Hall’s resulting headed effort was saved however, by Reading goalkeeper Tom Norcott. At the other end of the pitch Alfie Dorrington cleared away Ajani Giscombe’s effort inside the Spurs box, before Reading came very close to taking the lead. As Jeremiah Okine-Peters put Princewill Ehibhationham’s low cross from the left just wide, from the centre of the Spurs penalty area.

Alfie Dorrington did really well to block Princewill Ehibhationham’s effort inside the Spurs box, as Reading started the game well. Adam Hayton saved Princewill Ehibhationham’s headed effort from a Reading corner-kick. Then a couple of minutes later Caylon Vickers met a pass inside the centre of the Spurs box, but he put the ball over the goal. A good Spurs move followed, as Jamie Donley made a pass through to Riley Owen inside the Reading box, and Owen went past the Reading goalkeeper before passing the ball to Sam Amo-Ameyaw. The Spurs winger saw his resulting low effort cleared on the line by a defender. After meeting Maxwell McKnight’s clearance inside the Spurs box, Princewill Ehibhationham hit the ball wide of the Spurs goal. Dorrington blocked Ajani Giscombe’s effort, before Jamie Donley hit a free-kick effort into the Reading wall, a couple of minutes later. After receiving Tyrese Hall’s pass on the edge of the Reading box, Sam Amo-Ameyaw hit an effort over the goal. Reading took the lead in the 30th minute of the match. 

After Caylon Vickers went on a good and skilful run with the ball towards the Spurs box, he tried to score a goal. His effort hit one of the posts, before going back in his direction, and this time he was able to finish well, past Adam Hayton, 0-1. Spurs did respond well though, and around four minutes later Jamie Donley managed to get Spurs level in the game. After meeting Sam Amo-Ameyaw’s cross inside the centre of the Reading box, Donley got up well to head the ball past Tom Norcott and into the bottom left hand corner of the goal, 1-1. Spurs almost took the lead a couple of minutes later, after Amo-Ameyaw received the ball out on the right flank, came inside onto his left foot and hit a low effort against one of Tom Norcott’s posts. Maxwell McKnight then had an effort blocked, in what turned out to be the final real chance of the half. Spurs got the second half underway. After receiving a through-ball pass inside the Spurs box, Ajani Giscombe seemed likely to score however, Tyrese Hall managed to get in front of him and deflect his effort on goal behind for a corner-kick.

Adam Hayton managed to save Jeremiah Okine-Peters’ low effort on goal, before Spurs took the lead in the match. After receiving the ball the impressive Tyrese Hall went down the right side of the Reading box, before squaring the ball for Jamie Donley in the centre of the penalty area. Donley did well to put the ball into the back of the net, possibly via a deflection off of a Reading defender. Adam Hayton saved a deflected effort from Jeremiah Okine-Peters, before at the other end of the pitch Thomas Bloxham hit an effort wide from inside the Reading box. Leo Black replaced Thomas Bloxham a couple of minutes later, as Spurs made their first change of the game. Jordan Hackett made two important blocks in quick succession, to stop Jeremiah Okine-Peters from scoring, inside the Spurs box. A good pass from Jamie Donley to Leo Black, resulted in him hitting a low effort just wide of the goal, from inside the Reading box, as Riley Owen was close to being able to guide it into the goal. After cutting inside from the left flank, Owen had an effort saved by Tom Norcott. After Alfie Dorrington made a good challenge, Billy Heaps blocked an effort on goal. 

Damola Ajayi and Jahziah Linton replaced Jamie Donley and Riley Owen respectively, with around seven minutes of the game remaining. After Caylon Vickers passed the ball to Ajani Giscombe on the edge of the Spurs box, the Reading midfielder hit a powerful effort, which was well saved by Hayton, before the ball was then cleared. Then after Maxwell McKnight’s headed clearance was met by Princewill Ehibhationham inside the Spurs penalty area, Adam Hayton managed to tip his effort over the goal. Hayton then saved well from Ajani Giscombe’s effort on goal, before Alfie Dorrington importantly blocked Princewill Ehibhationham’s effort very late on in the game. Reading’s last effort of the game was from Harry Furlong, whose effort went over Adam Hayton’s goal, with the referee then sounding his whistle for full-time. Spurs face West Ham United away next Saturday, in their next Premier League South game.

Player reviews:

  • Adam Hayton: The Spurs goalkeeper made some very important saves as the game went on. The second year scholar was vocal throughout the match, and the saves that he made made sure that Spurs won the game.
  • Maxwell McKnight: Starting the match at right-back once again, Maxwell McKnight showed his quality while going forward with the ball and he put some good crosses into the Reading box. I also thought that McKnight defended solidly down his side of the pitch, in what was a very good defensive performance from the whole Spurs defence.
  • Alfie Dorrington: The right sided centre-half had a very good game today. Dorrington stepped out well with the ball from defence on occasions, but it was his many important blocks and also his good challenges, which helped to stop Reading from getting something out of the game. Dorrington and Sayers worked really well together today in central-defence.
  • Charlie Sayers: The Spurs captain managed to get in front of the Reading forwards really well on occasions today. Sayers defended well throughout, and also showed his fine ability on the ball.
  • Jordan Hackett: The left-back had one of his best games of the season today, in my opinion. The England youth international made some important and brave blocks, and also some good challenges as well.
  • Tyrese Hall: My man of the match, see below. 
  • Billy Heaps: This was another hardworking midfield performance from first year scholar Billy Heaps. The footballer from Stevenage worked well with Tyrese Hall in central-midfield, and they both complimented each other well.
  • Sam Amo-Ameyaw: Carrying on from his impressive performance against Aston Villa last weekend, winger Sam Amo-Ameyaw went on some good and skilful runs with the ball down the right flank. He set-up Jamie Donley’s opening goal of the game, before then going close to scoring a goal himself.
  • Riley Owen: The first year scholar started the game as a CAM, where he linked up well with centre-forward Jamie Donley. Owen would later move out to the left flank, before later being substituted.
  • Thomas Bloxham: The Republic of Ireland Under 17 international worked hard out on the left flank as a winger, and he also helped out the team defensively on occasions, while also getting forward well with the ball.
  • Jamie Donley: The centre-forward impressed with his link-up play, and he dropped deep well with the ball to make some good forward passes. Donley took both of his goals well, and during his time on the pitch he worked really hard.
  • Leo Black: Making his debut for Spurs at this level against Reading, Leo Black started in the CAM position, after being introduced to the game in the second half.
  • Damola Ajayi: The late substitute went into central midfield.
  • Jahziah Linton: The late substitute went out to the left flank where he played as a winger, during his time on the pitch.

My man of the match: Tyrese Hall. Starting the match alongside Billy Heaps in central-midfield as the deepest of the two midfielders, schoolboy footballer Tyrese Hall had a really good game in midfield, as he had a good influence on the game throughout. Hall’s all-round performance in midfield was very good in my opinion. He got forward well on occasions, showed good skill on the ball throughout the match, and covered a lot of ground. On his fifth competitive appearance of the season for Stuart Lewis’ side, Tyrese Hall, who is clearly a versatile player, showed a real desire to want to make a real difference in the game. He set-up Jamie Donley for his second goal of the game and also made a very important block. Hall knew when to get forward well, but also when to stay deep to help out the defence.

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