Spurs Under 21’s 0-1 Stevenage: (match report)

Spurs’ Under 21 side faced League Two side Stevenage at the Lamex Stadium, on Tuesday evening, in their final group-stage fixture of the 2022/23 Papa Johns Trophy. Wayne Burnett’s Spurs side lost the game 1-0, meaning that they finished in fourth place in the group. Josh Keeley started in goal for Spurs, while Max Robson, Malachi Fagan-Walcott, Alfie Dorrington and Marqes Muir started in defence. Captain Matthew Craig, Kallum Cesay and Nile John started in central midfield. Romaine Mundle, Yago Santiago and Jamie Donley started in the forward areas for Spurs, who got the game underway. Jordan Roberts hit a volleyed effort over the Spurs goal, from the edge of the Spurs box, early on in the game. After skilfully turning his way past a Stevenage player, Yago Santiago worked his way into the Stevenage penalty area, before having an effort saved by Aaron Chapman, and Santiago’s resulting pass was read well by a Stevenage defender. 

Stevenage’s Danny Rose headed behind a cross inside the Spurs box, before a looping cross into the Spurs penalty area by Max Clark, was met by Jordan Roberts, whose volleyed effort went past Josh Keeley in the Spurs goal (he managed to get a hand on the ball), as it went into the goal, 0-1. Malachi Fagan-Walcott did well to clear away a low cross into the Spurs box by Kane Smith, shortly after the game got started again. Romaine Mundle had a curling effort from the edge of the Stevenage penalty area saved by Aaron Chapman, before Danny Rose volleyed over an effort inside the Spurs box, from a resulting free-kick. Danny Rose then had a free-kick effort from the right flank tipped over by Josh Keeley, in what was the final chance of the first half. 

Stevenage got the second half underway, and shortly after Jordan Roberts volleyed Max Clark’s cross (Nile John had received a yellow card, shortly before the chance) into the side-netting of Josh Keeley’s goal. Roberts was however, put off by Alfie Dorrington, who did well. Jamie Donley curled an effort wide from the right side of the Stevenage box, before Spurs made two substitutions, as Brooklyn Lyons-Foster and Will Lankshear came on for Romaine Mundle and Matthew Craig respectively. A good long pass from Malachi Fagan-Walcott over the top of the Stevenage defence, was able to find the run of Nile John who entered the penalty area, before having his low effort saved by the feet of Aaron Chapman. It was to be Spurs’ best chance of the game. Malachi Fagan-Walcott managed to block Jake Taylor’s effort well, before then doing really well to make a sliding block to stop Josh Keeley from having to make a save from Arthur Read’s effort. 

Stevenage were doing well in the game, and after Brooklyn Lyons-Foster had blocked Arthur Read’s effort, Dean Campbell’s deflected effort on the edge of the Spurs penalty area was saved by Josh Keeley. First year scholar Damola Ajayi replaced Jamie Donley late on in the game, before Nile John was shown a second yellow card after making a challenge. Roshaun Mathurin replaced Yago Santiago for the final minutes of the game, before the referee sounded his whistle for full-time. Spurs’ Under 21 side face Fulham on Saturday in the Premier League 2, in their next match. 

My Spurs player of the match – Malachi Fagan-Walcott. The 20 year old central defender had in my opinion a good game on the right side of central defence, alongside Alfie Dorrington, who also did well. Malachi Fagan-Walcott read the game well, made some good sliding challenges and blocks, and he was good on the ball. Also, Max Robson did well at right-back (this was the first time that I’d ever seen him start a game in that position), and Marqes Muir did well at left-back. In the forward areas of the pitch, I was impressed with Yago Santiago, and his movement off the ball. Also, Brooklyn Lyons-Foster made a good impression on the game, after being substituted on during the second half.

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