Spurs Under 23’s 1-0 Derby County: (match report)

Spurs’ Under 23 side traveled up to Derby on Monday, to face a Derby County side who had already been relegated from the Premier League 2 Division One, going into the match on Monday evening at Pride Park. Spurs won this Premier League 2 match 1-0, and it was a game that I thought that Spurs deserved to win. Thimothée Lo-Tutala started in goal for Spurs, while Kallum Cesay, Marqes Muir, Malachi Fagan-Walcott and Marcel Lavinier started in defence. Captain Jamie Bowden and Matthew Craig started in midfield, and Romaine Mundle and Yago Santiago started out on the flanks, either side of CAM Nile John. Max Robson led the line for Spurs. Derby got the game underway. After showing some nice skill on the ball, Spurs captain Jamie Bowden made a through-ball pass to the alert Max Robson down the left side of the Derby penalty area. However, Robson’s effort went just over Harry Evans’ goal, in what was a good early chance for Spurs. After going on a surging forward run with the ball from midfield, Bowden then hit a low effort wide from the edge of the Derby box.

Max Robson then came close to getting on the end of a low cross into the Derby box, but goalkeeper Harry Evans managed to get the ball clear in time. Spurs continued to do well during the opening stages of the match. After receiving Jamie Bowden’s pass, Romaine Mundle went forward with the ball, before hitting a low effort wide of the Derby goal. Max Robson was shown a yellow card, before a really promising low cross from Kornell McDonald towards Jack Stretton inside the Spurs box, was cleared just in time by Marqes Muir, who did well on that occasion. Spurs took the lead not long before half-time. Santiago passed the ball to Cesay on the right flank, and he then passed the ball to Nile John in the centre of the Derby box. John’s effort was deflected onto the post, but the ball then came to Jamie Bowden inside the Derby box, and his effort found the bottom left hand corner of the goal, 1-0. The referee sounded his whistle for half-time not long after.

Spurs got the second half underway. Jamie Bowden received an early yellow card, before Nile John hit an effort wide from outside the Derby box. After receiving Romaine Mundle’s pass inside the Derby box, Max Robson managed to find Yago Santiago, but his following effort on the turn was saved by Harry Evans. Muir blocked Osazee Aghatise’s effort inside the Spurs box, and then at the other end of the pitch Kallum Cesay hit an effort wide of the Derby goal, from inside their box. Josh Shonibare hit an effort wide of Lo-Tutala’s goal from the left side of the Spurs box, before Romaine Mundle had a good curling effort tipped behind by Harry Evans. Yago Santiago then had an effort from far out blocked, before Romaine Mundle managed to find Marcel Lavinier with a pass down the left side of the Derby box, but his following effort was blocked by Kornell McDonald. Following a pass from Bowden to Robson, the Spurs centre-forward managed to show some good strength and skill with the ball, to take it to the edge of the Derby box, before having his effort saved by Harry Evans.

Spurs made a double change as Max Robson and Nile John were replaced by J’Neil Bennett and Jamie Donley. Marqes Muir was able to get an important touch on the ball just in time, from a good cross inside the Spurs box, before a lofted pass from Bowden to Donley inside the Derby box, saw Donley have a volleyed effort tipped behind by Harry Evans. Then after some good work with the ball from Romaine Mundle, the Spurs winger had an effort blocked. Bennett then had a deflected effort saved by Harry Evans. Kallum Cesay received a yellow card, just before Thimothée Lo-Tutala was able to gather Tyree Wilson’s pass inside the Spurs box. Dermi Lusala then replaced Yago Santiago, in what was Spurs’ final change of the game. An effort from Marcel Lavinier down the left side of the Derby box was saved well by Harry Evans. A couple of minutes later and after a good forward run from Romaine Mundle, he passed it to J’Neil Bennett down the left side of the Derby box. However, Bennett’s effort went over. The referee sounded his whistle for full-time shortly after. Spurs’ next Premier League 2 fixture is at home to Brighton, next Monday at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

Player reviews:

  • Thimothée Lo-Tutala: The Spurs goalkeeper didn’t actually have a save to make against Derby. The France Under 19 international did show some good composure on the ball however, and his distribution was good.
  • Kallum Cesay: The right-back was involved in Spurs’ goal after passing the ball to Nile John inside the Derby box. Cesay got up and down the right flank well, before moving to the left flank, after Dermi Lusala was substituted on, late on in the match.
  • Marqes Muir: My man of the match, see below.
  • Malachi Fagan-Walcott: The left sided centre-half for this match read the game well and alongside Marqes Muir, Malachi Fagan-Walcott did well at defending.
  • Marcel Lavinier: Starting the match as a left-back, Marcel Lavinier often found himself in quite a lot of space out on the left flank. Lavinier got forward well throughout the match, and he came close to scoring during the second half.
  • Jamie Bowden: The Spurs captain made some good forward passes from midfield and he also showed good skill, as he carried the ball forward well himself, on occasions.
  • Matthew Craig: The midfielder worked hard off the ball and was also tidy with it.
  • Romaine Mundle: The creative winger had a very good game out on the right flank. Mundle went on some excellent and skilful forward runs with the ball, and he was creative with it. During the second half the winger had a very good game.
  • Nile John: Starting the match as a CAM, Nile John was in my opinion at his best against Derby during the first half of the match. John showed some fine skill on the ball.
  • Yago Santiago: The winger who started the match out on the left flank, did well at what he did with the ball, and he used it well.
  • Max Robson: Leading the line well again and impressing with his link-up play and movement off the ball, Max Robson was unlucky not to score a goal from his good early chance. However, Robson worked so well once again off the ball, and he created some good space for himself, and made some good runs in behind the Derby defence.
  • J’Neil Bennett: The second half substitute was very direct with the ball.
  • Jamie Donley: The second half substitute had a good effort saved by the Derby goalkeeper, not long after being introduced to the game.
  • Dermi Lusala: The late substitute went to right-back, as Kallum Cesay moved to left-back, following his substitution on.

My man of the match: Marqes Muir. The right sided centre-half was decisive in his defending against Derby County, and he kept good positioning throughout the match. Getting stronger in his defending as the match went on, Muir defended well against Derby County centre-forward Jack Stretton, and there were a couple of important moments in the game when Marqes stepped up and made some good defensive interventions. He was also good on the ball.

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