Spurs 2-0 Brighton: (my post match thoughts)

Spurs 2-0 Brighton: (my post match thoughts)

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It was vital that Pochettino’s Spurs side continued their winning run when they welcomed Chris Hughton’s Brighton side to Wembley, on Wednesday night. And after a tough workmanlike like performance against the seagulls, Spurs found themselves up in fourth spot owing to points dropped from Liverpool and Arsenal. It may not have entertained the supporters on the terraces due to Brighton’s stifling defensive stance throughout the game, but it was one of those ‘job well done’ performances from Pochettino’s men. Brighton as predicted were incredibly resilient, the imposing Duffy and Dunk stopping any crosses that we tried to deliver in to their box. There was not a lot of fluid football during the game, Brighton hounded our forwards throughout and though they created little up top, Hughton’s side certainly tested Spurs’ resolve. Though Spurs dominated the possession in the first half, Pochettino’s side found it hard to break down the visitors especially inside the danger area, Son and Lamela both going close. Before a huge slice of luck gave Spurs the lead five minutes before the interval, Winks pass was picked up by Serge Aurier down the right flank he advanced past Bong who slid in just as he was about to deliver the ball into the box. This unbalanced the Ivorian though he managed to get the cross away, which much to his and Matthew Ryan’s surprise flew into the far top corner of his goal, 1-0.

Spurs continued to dominate play during the second half as they looked to extend their lead, with Brighton’s only threat coming from the mesmeric dribbling of Anthony Knockaert who Spurs players couldn’t seem to get off the ball when ever he advanced forward. Lamela hit the outside of Ryan’s post early on in the half as a dull spell for both sides followed. Then on 70 minutes Brighton ought to have equalised when Tomer Hemed received the ball inside the six yard box, the Israeli international squandered his chance which was comfortably gathered by Lloris. An excellent late Harry Kane free kick on the edge of the penalty area was only denied by the upright, before Spurs were awarded a late free kick down the right channel. Christian Eriksen’s pinpoint free kick being deftly flicked home by the head of Son to secure the points in a game in which Spurs thoroughly deserved to win. In all truth there weren’t too many standout performances during what for the most part was a dreadfully dull match for the neutral. Son’s energy once again reaped its rewards whilst Lamela’s first league start in well over a year was of fine quality, he was creative and looked sharp in the final third. Eriksen was forced out of the game by the rigid Brighton defence whilst the commanding presence of Eric Dier at centre back caught my eye. Ultimately it’s a brilliant result and one that will leave us in good stead for our visit to the Etihad on Saturday for what will prove to be our biggest test of the season so far. COYS

Anthony Knockaert: I don’t know about anyone else but I’d love to see Spurs go in for Brighton’s French winger over the winter transfer period. A player who I watched play extensively for the seagulls in the championship, whilst the tricky winger has yet to match that form in the premier league the former Leicester man is a player who likes to run at the defenders and with his mercurial skill he has the ability to leave them with ease.

 

 

 

 

 

This seasons statistics: Senior: goal scorers: Alli-6
Davies-2
Kane-18
Eriksen-5
Son-8
Sissoko-2
Llorente-1
Nkoudou-1
Aurier-1

Assists Eriksen-5
Trippier-7
Davies-3
Kane-4
Alli-6
Alderweireld-1
Sissoko-1
Son-4
Dier-1
Lamela-1
Llorente-1
Winks-1

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Spurs under 18’s 5-0 Preston North End: (match report)

Spurs under 18’s 5-0 Preston North End: (match report)

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Much to my delight I managed to attend today’s FA youth cup third round tie at the training centre despite there being no fans allowed in (due to the late change of venue). I was thankfully granted access by the press office, meaning that I could report on the game. And what a game it was, as a strong Spurs side managed to sweep aside last seasons surprise package Preston with a wonderful attacking performance. The visitors tried to contain us early on but it was never going to work, our lads were too strong and incisive in their play for the lilywhites. They dictated the tempo of the game and managed to break through their defence early on despite their defensive stance, it was in all truth a victory that Spurs coasted to. Due to the amounts of snow on other pitches, the game was played on a pitch which the seniors use to train on at the back of the main reception. Spurs kicked the game off in what would have been tough conditions for the youngsters owing to the bitterly cold weather. Spurs showed early signs of confidence, passing the ball around well. De Bie dealt well with a Preston cross early on, whilst the presence of centre backs Eyoma and Lyons-Foster would have put his mind at ease. The visitors were sitting deep, desperate to not let Spurs break forward. Spurs upped their pace on 15 minutes and it almost paid off. After Richards found Patterson inside the box, though Patterson could only shin the ball wide. Soon afterwards Spurs took the lead following a lovely passage of play.

The move started with the prominent Lloyd-Bennett who surged forward down the left flank beating his man in the process. The young winger delivered a low cross into the area which was met first time by the advancing Maghoma, to cooly pass the ball beyond Cottam, 1-0. Adam O’Reilly tested De Bie soon after the restart before O’Neil rounded Skipp on the edge of the area, before forcing another decent save out of De Bie. Preston appeared to be upping their game. But Spurs soon reestablished their dominance on the game, Reo Griffiths having a penalty shout waved away before Richards flashed an effort wide of goal. Spurs then came desperately close to extending their lead, when Paris Maghoma’s brilliant dipping long range effort, came crashing off the crossbar. The game had gathered at a frantic pace it had really opened up, Jamie Reynolds was forced into making an important interception back in the Spurs end, whilst Spurs looked to catch Preston on the counter, it was a recurring theme. The lively Rodel Richards showed good foot work inside the box before forcing Cottam into making a fine save, Richards was involved again moments later. The young forward cutting inside from the right before laying the ball off to Patterson whose goal bound effort was blocked.

Parker’s side knew that they had to get that second goal, and the warning signs were there. Most notably when Oscar O’Neils effort flew just wide for the visitors. Spurs were piling the pressure on to the championship club as the half neared an end, Patterson seeing his flying volley blocked by a Preston defender. Before a key moment in the game occurred, when Spurs deservedly doubled their lead at the perfect time. It was another well worked move which led to the goal, instigated by Paris Maghoma. Who slid the ball down the right channel to Griffiths, the striker looked up at goal before whipping a low cross into the danger area. Rodel Richards was alert to it, managing to get to the ball before his opposite number, the 16 year old prodded the ball home, 2-0. Spurs almost added to their lead on the stroke of halftime, after Skipp embarked on a brilliant forward run, the experienced development squad player played a pass through to Griffiths inside the box. Though the strikers low effort was saved by the feet of Cottam. The first chance of the second half came to the visitors, Jonathan De Bie being called into action to deal with a thumping effort from distance. Preston’s resurgence wasn’t to last long, Oliver Skipp embarked on another great forward run shortly before Phoenix Patterson’s low effort was saved by James Cottam.

Spurs’ dominance on the game was duly rewarded on 52 minutes as Scott Parker’s team grabbed their third of the game. It was yet another lovely attacking move, it started off with Reynolds who clipped a low cross into the box which resulted in Griffith’s receiving the ball, his close range effort being well blocked by Cottam. With the loose ball being picked up by Patterson on the edge of the area, the midfielder showed great composure to calmly curl the ball home despite being hounded by Preston defenders, Preston were unable to cope with the pace of the game. Preston were gifted a rare chance on the hour mark after Eyoma conceded a dangerous free kick on the edge of the box. Michael Howards excellent free kick flying narrowly over De Bie’s crossbar. Spurs put the game to bed a couple of minutes later, the influential Lloyd-Bennett once again playing a big part in the goal. After some good build up play Lloyd-Bennett picked the ball up down the left before charging forward clipping in a nice cross to the far post, which was nodded home by Richards, 4-0. Parker’s side were being allowed time on the ball as the visitors tired it was all looking a bit too easy for his team. However they would have pulled a goal back through Adam O’Reilly were it not for the heroics of De Bie, who spectacularly saved the forwards dipping long range effort, which seemed certain to go inside the top corner.

Lloyd-Bennett forced a good stop out of Cottam soon after, before Spurs managed to put the icing on top of the cake with their fifth goal of the game. It was a goal to cherish from the hat trick hero, starting in midfield with Maghoma who produced a lovely pass to find substitute Markanday down the right. Markanday rolled the ball across to Richards inside the box, he then pulled of a series of Villaesque dribbles evading the defenders in the process. Before finally tucking the ball past Cottam and into the back of the net, 5-0! Markanday almost pulled off a late wonder goal after embarking on a jinking run, but Spurs would have just been happy with the five goals and a place in the fourth round. Where an away tie with Bournemouth awaits the lads. COYS

 

Player reviews: – Jonathan De Bie: Not too involved, due to our dominance on the game, but he was sound throughout especially in dealing with corners and set pieces, made a world class save during the second half.
– Tariq Hinds: Solid and good going forward, didn’t put a foot wrong.
– Jamie Reynolds: Another excellent performance from Reynolds at left back, made some important interceptions/clearances. As well as producing some really good passes and crosses. Very tidy player.
– Oliver Skipp: What can I say that hasn’t already been said about this young man! Dropping back down to the 18’s, Skipp’s exposure to the development squad was plain to see. He was an engine in the midfield, he also done very well going forward.
– TJ Eyoma: Another who dropped down a level today, Eyoma didn’t give the Preston forwards a sniff throughout the game. He was rock solid and decisive when it mattered. Also dominant in the air.
– Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: Similarly excellent, Lyons-Foster was cool and composed throughout. Decisive and intelligent in his play I don’t remember him making a single mistake.
– Rodel Richards: My motm (see below).
– P.Maghoma: Terrific display from the exciting midfielder, played a big part in three of our goals including his own well taken finish. He was excellent on the ball, his weight of pass second to none.
– Reo Griffiths: The Preston defenders couldn’t handle the Spurs strikers power and pace. He gave them a torrid time all game, held the ball up really well, looked sharp and made good runs in between the defenders. Also laid off two goals.
– J’neil Lloyd Bennett: Another start for the schoolboy and yet another terrific performance by the winger. He just wanted to run at the fullbacks, and quite simply they couldn’t cope with him. Created two of our goals. Beginning to look like a special talent.
– Phoenix Patterson: Put in a great shift in midfield, nimble footed and creative. Patterson carried the ball well and capped off a fine display with a well taken goal.
– Jonathan Dinzeyi: Great to see him back following a lay off with injury, impressed during his cameo.
– Dilan Markanday: Another player whose returning from injury, Markanday made a brilliant impression on the game during his short time on the pitch, showed excellent ball control, went on many weaving runs and also managed to set up Richards for his hat-trick. His late solo effort was top class.

My man of the match: Rodel Richards was once again unstoppable down the right flank, quickly making a name for himself amongst Spurs fans. The 16 year old forward put in another motm performance this afternoon, sharp and creative down the flank. Richards provided plenty of flare down the wing with his excellent close ballcontrol and skill. Constantly tracked back, looked to make space and most importantly of all he was clinical in front of goal. Bagging his second hat trick of the season, his last goal was truly special!

 

Under 18 Goals scored this season: Reo Griffiths-11
Phoenix Patterson-4
Dilan Markanday- 3
Jamie Bowden- 1
Moroyin Omolabi-1
Rayan Clarke-1
Maurizio Pochettino-1
Paris Maghoma-2
Rodel Richards-6
J’neill Lloyd-Bennett-1
TJ Eyoma-1

Assists: Phoenix Patterson- 5
Jamie Bowden-1
Matt Lock- 2
Jeremie Mukendi-2
Jamie Reynolds-1
Reo Griffiths-5
J’neill Lloyd-Bennett-4
Rayan Clarke-2
Rodel Richards-1
Dilan Markanday-1

Interesting stat: Schoolboy J’neil Lloyd Bennett has now featured 5 times for the under 18’s this campaign, playing a direct part in five goals!

Spurs: De Bie (c), Hinds (Dinzeyi 72), Reynolds, Skipp (Bowden 81), Eyoma, Lyons-Foster, Richards, P Maghoma, Griffiths, Patterson (Markanday 66), Bennett. Substitutes (not used): Oluwayemi, A Shashoua.

Preston North End: Cottam, Fensome (c), Campbell, Baxter, Stead, Lyons, Smart (Wood 56), O’Neil, Garstang (Walker 56), O’Reilly, Howard (Brannigan 81). Substitutes (not used): Lenton, Armer.

Goals: Spurs – Maghoma 19, Richards 39, 64, 84, Patterson 52.

Yellow cards: Preston – Lyons 63.

Referee: Ivan Gelov.

Attendance: 78

Spurs 3-0 APOEL Nicosia. A Job well done!: (My post match thoughts)

Spurs 3-0 APOEL Nicosia. A Job well done!: (My post match thoughts)

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In our final champions league group game of the campaign, there was on paper little that Pochettino’s side had to gain, having already secured top spot in the group. Cypriot side APOEL Nicosia were the visitors at Wembley, with over 6,000 fans supporting them it created a nice atmosphere inside the national stadium. In all truth it wasn’t the most memorable game, nor did it see a lot of fast tempo football. None of that mattered, as Spurs took a hold of the game early on dominating possession and managing 11 shots on goal to APOEL’s 0. After going close on a couple of occasions inside the opening stages of the game, a much rotated Spurs side took a deserved lead when Fernando Llorente netted his first goal for Spurs on 20 minutes. Aurier’s fine crossed was received inside the box by Llorente, who with his back to goal managed to turn his man and slot inside Perez’s goal much to the delight of the Spurs faithful. Pochettino’s sides dominance on the game didn’t stop, Son soon made it 2-0 with a sumptuous finish on the edge of the penalty area. Whilst the hosts gave little to threaten a comeback, the defensive pairing of Sanchez and Foyth were for the most part spectators. The second half was far less entertaining, Spurs still controlled the game but didn’t create as many chances. Aurier went close soon after the restart, whilst Spurs played the possession game.

Capping things off with a third ten minutes from time when the lively Nkoudou netted his first for the club courtesy of a slight deflection from an APOEL defender. And in a night of firsts, young Kazaiah Sterling came off of the bench to make his first appearance for Spurs after waiting by the sidelines for what seemed like an eternity, it was a great moment to see! There were few other majors talking points from the game, a much rotated Spurs team got the job done with a fine performance and a much needed morale boost of a win. Juan Foyth looked nice and composed in defence, whilst Rose put in a terrific display at left back. Nkoudou had one of his best games in a Spurs shirt, carrying the ball extremely well down the left flank. But the plaudits for me, go to Fernando Llorente and Son. Llorente chipping in with a goal and assist whilst, Son provided the creativity for most of our attacking moves and also scored a lovely goal. Who do we want in the last 16 draw which takes place on Monday? Well that’s down to personal opinion, though I’d quite like us to get Porto. Attention turns to Saturday now with a crucial league game at home to Stoke, let’s hope the lads can carry the momentum into that game! COYS

 

Statistics 2017/18:

Senior: goal scorers: Alli-6
Davies-2
Kane-16
Eriksen-4
Son-6
Sissoko-2
Llorente-1
Nkoudou-1

Assists Eriksen-4
Trippier-7
Davies-2
Kane-4
Alli-5
Alderweireld-1
Sissoko-1
Son-2
Dier-1
Lamela-1
Llorente-1

 

Spurs under 18’s 4-1 Aston Villa: (match report)

Spurs under 18’s 4-1 Aston Villa: (match report)

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It was our under 18’s best performance of the season which saw them see off a talented Aston Villa side, at Hotspur Way this afternoon. It was a display of the highest quality as Scott Parker’s highly attacking side totally out played the villains with slick and fast attacking football, played at a high intensity. It really was champagne football from the Spurs lads as Parker’s side secured their second win in the final group game of this seasons u18 premier league cup, and in doing so have managed to secure one of two runner up berths to make the knockout stages. Parker’s side which included talented school boy J’neil Lloyd Bennett, started with a real zip about their game. They passed the ball around with pace and were instantly looking to attack. Villa were trying to play us on the counterattack and it worked early on. After Graham burst down the left channel before forcing De Bie into making a good save at his far post. With the ball then deflecting off Reynolds and then on to the post, before eventually falling to Indiana Vasillev who slotted home, 0-1. Having looked the better team in the opening stages it was of no surprise to me when we equalised just minutes later courtesy of a stunner from Rodel Richards. It was the youngsters first of the season, after a move was started by Shashoua the ball came to Griffiths who passed to Richards, he turned on the edge of the area before firing a low effort inside the bottom corner of Idem’s net, 1-1.

The prominent Lloyd-Bennett surged down the left soon after the restart, picking out Clarke at the far post, though the wingback missed timed his header and Idem was easily able to gather. Villa looked for a response but Colin Odutayo could only force De Bie into making a routine save. Parker’s side had got a real grip on the game, they were dictating play across all areas. Villa were being reduced to long range efforts, as demonstrated by Dmitri Sea on 15 minutes, when he dragged an effort wide of goal. Spurs soon continued their attacking forays down the flanks, Patterson’s cross was glanced just over by Clarke. Before Griffiths turned and fired just wide, we then threatened through the potent Lloyd-Bennett whose searing pace resulted in him whipping an inviting cross into the area, which was duly cleared by a Villa defender. Reo Griffiths tested the defence soon afterwards, when he ran across the length of the box before firing into the side netting. Whilst De Bie had to be alert at the other end as Villa broke forward, the Belgian making a fine stop to keep the danger at bay. Another lively player was Phoenix Patterson, playing in the centre of the park, he managed to cut in and fire an effort straight at the keeper as Spurs continued their domination on the game. Perhaps Parker’s side weren’t having enough efforts on goal considering there possession but they were really impressing, especially with the the pace and crosses of Lloyd Bennett and Clarke.

Rodel Richards had a goal ruled out for offside, whilst Patterson tested Idem from range, as Spurs continued to outplay the villains. However, Parker’s lads were almost caught out by a long ball from Villa which put Odutayo through on goal. The wingers powerful effort being superbly tipped over the crossbar by De Bie. Spurs then took a deserved lead towards the end of the half through the lively J’neil Lloyd Bennett who manage to get on the end of Clarke’s deep cross. Before sweetly catching it on the half volley, to power it inside the far corner of the goal, to give Spurs the lead. Spurs weren’t content with just a one goal lead as Griffiths proved soon afterwards, when his effort flew inches wide of the goal. The half could have ended very differently for Spurs when Statham was beaten for strength by Sea in a dangerous part of the pitch. Thankfully for Spurs the forwards low effort was well saved by the alert De Bie. Shashoua tested Ide towards the dying stages of the half with a powerful effort, whilst Griffiths went close with a bicycle kick. Spurs were looking much the fitter side. We started the second half even brighter, Lloyd Bennett showing great pace early on to whip in a dangerous cross, which was only inches away from being met by Clarke. Then a fine move saw the wingback test Idem once again. Spurs had limited Villa’s options to only long range efforts as demonstrated by Graham on the hour mark, the defenders effort being easily caught by De Bie.

Another good chance for Clarke followed before Spurs managed to extend their lead on 66 minutes courtesy of a brilliant goal. Bowden’s delicate chip played Richards through on goal, showing remarkable skill inside the area before being intercepted, Patterson then tried his luck. Before the ball eventually fell back into Richards feet to see him squeeze it home, 3-1. The passing and fluid attacking play from Spurs was truly breathtaking. And things got even better when Richards secured his hat trick to put the game beyond doubt, bolstering our goal difference in the process. Rayan Clarke’s powerful drive was thwarted by Idem straight into the path of Richards who buried his chance, 4-1. It was champagne football from the young lilywhites! However, the visitors seemed to up their game after conceding the fourth, Lewis Brunt came very close to pulling a goal back. Whilst a crucial save from Oluwayemi and a goal line block by Reynolds ensured a fantastic result for our lads! COYS

Player reviews:
– Jonathan De Bie: Had a fine game, made some really important stops including a stunning reflex save in the first half.
– Rayan Clarke: Adapted really well to the right wing back role, powerful and creative going forward. Managed to set up two goals.
– Jamie Reynolds: Put in an excellent shift at left back, very decisive and solid.
– Jamie Bowden: Dictated play in the central areas, playing in a deep lying role the 16 year old holding midfielder. Was Winkseque in his play, neat and tidy with a crisp pass. He anticipated the game well and played a big part in Richards second of the game.
– Maxwell Statham: Had a decent game, strong in the challenge.
– Tariq Hinds: The versatile Hinds managed to slot in well at LCB today, he formed a good partnership with Statham.
– Rodel Richards: Absolutely phenomenal performance from the promising striker. Playing on the right flank today Richards got a rare start and he seized his opportunity. All three of his finishes were classy, but it was his intelligent runs and energy that were so impressive, I really like his style of play and his willingness to track back.
– Phoenix Patterson: One of his best performances of the season, operating on the right side of central midfield. Patterson put in a brilliant display, he was so creative in his play. His decision making second to none, the forward was instrumental throughout the game, I’ve started to think of he reminds of a bit. And it’s Brighton’s Izzy Brown when he was the same age. Patterson was so involved in today’s game.
– Reo Griffiths: Had a decent game up top though he didn’t manage to test Idem much in goal. He did however, get the assist for our first of the game.
– Armando Shashoua: Another great performance from young Shashoua, done his job perfectly. Operating as a 10 he dropped back, created space for others and instigated some good attacking moves, he has been excellent for us this season.
– Josh Oluwayemi: Came on as a late substitute (only his second appearance of the season) but done a good job, made one very good reflex save.
– Maurizio Pochettino: N/A
– Dilan Markanday: N/A

My man of the match: I feel really bad not giving it to the hat-trick hero Rodel Richards who was absolutely phenomenal out wide. But I’m going to award it to the school boy J’neil Lloyd-Bennett, the wide man who I first saw play at the under 16 game in Cambridge a couple of months back, appears to be making rapid progress since joining our Academy from QPR. This was his third consecutive under 18 game in a row, and I’m sure it will have been his best. This kids got incredible ability, he had Aston Villa defenders on the floor during todays game, they just couldn’t cope with his speed, power and decision making especially in the final third. He took his goal so well, but it was his eagerness to just run at defenders with sublime pieces of skill (think Zaha) he also delivers a mean cross. I know it’s only the second time that I’ve seen him live but I really like how he plays. Something I liked in particular was the way he played with a smile on his face, he appeared to be loving the game, buoyant and determined throughout the 90 minutes.

Spurs U18s: De Bie (c, Oluwayemi 76), Clarke, Reynolds, Bowden, Statham, Hinds, Richards (Markanday 79), Patterson, Griffiths (Pochettino 76), A Shashoua, Lloyd-Bennett. Substitutes (not used): Tainio, Mukendi.

Updated statistics:

Under 18’s Goals scored this season: Reo Griffiths-9
Phoenix Patterson -3
Dilan Markanday- 3
Jamie Bowden- 1
Moroyin Omolabi-1
Rayan Clarke-1
Maurizio Pochettino-1
Paris Maghoma-1
Rodel Richards-3
J’neill Lloyd-Bennett-1

 

Assists: Phoenix Patterson- 4
Jamie Bowden-1
Matt Lock- 2
Jeremie Mukendi-2
Jamie Reynolds-1
Reo Griffiths-2
J’neill Lloyd-Bennett-1
Rayan Clarke-2

Spurs under 21’s 1-2 Barnet: (match report)

Spurs under 21’s 1-2 Barnet: (match report)

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”We’ve come up against two League Two teams and one League One team in this competition and at times we’ve competed well, we’ve played some decent football but we’ve come up short. Yes, the players are still developing but part of their development is understanding how to win and we haven’t done that again. We’ve very disappointed in the goals conceded but we have to learn from that. We understand mistakes might happen but we have to learn and that’s the key thing for these young players.“ (Wayne Burnett)

After taking my seat at Barnets new stadium ‘the hive’ I looked around in awe at the stadium, it’s a lovely little ground with a pristine and modern feel about it, I also noticed whilst walking in, that the training ground is right next to the stadium. Enough of that, the reason I was there was to see our under 21’s final Checkatrade trophy game of the season, on paper it was a dead rubber with both sides unable to advance to the knockout stages, this game was all about playing for pride. And Burnett’s lads done just that, they put in a spirited display really taking the game to Barnet in the first half, leading deservedly at the interval. However, the bees experience shone through in the second half, they took control of the game and managed to put two past our defence to comfortably see out the tie on a bitterly cold evening. Former Spurs man Shaq Coulthirst embraced Spurs’ head of Academy development John McDermott prior to kick off, and the former Academy player had the first chance of the game. When the forward had a go from range, his effort sailing high above Whiteman’s goal. Barnet fired narrowly wide moments later as they looked to put a foothold on the game. The bees fine start to the game continued a couple of minutes later, goalkeeper Alfie Whiteman managing to palm a dangerous cross away, but it fell right to veteran defender Michael Nelson who smashed the ball against the upright.

Shayon Harrison tested Ross with a thumping effort from range as Spurs looked to get into the game. Moments after our first goal attempt of the game, we took the lead courtesy of a stunning strike from Harrison. Edwards started the move off, showing some good feet before picking out Bennetts down the left channel, he surged forward before putting in a delicious cross into the box which was met on the half volley by Harrison, whose emphatic finished hit the roof of the net, 1-0. Jack Roles was a calming presence in the midfield, almost pulling off a brilliant through ball shortly after the restart. Whiteman did well to gather Kyei’s cross before Maghoma threw himself in the way of Fonguck’s effort to prevent a goalscoring opportunity. Barnet should have levelled from the resulting corner, Nelson’s bullet header darting inches wide of Whiteman’s far post. Barnet were looking dangerous on the break, Whiteman had to be alert to stop a powerful low effort on 23 minutes as Barnet continued to threaten our defence. Alex Nicholls 20 yard thunderbolt was only stopped by a heroic fingertip save from Whiteman, as Spurs continued to cling on. Spurs continued their impressive forward play, Harrison bending an effort wide on the half hour mark. Ryan Watson almost caught Whiteman out with his dipping free kick which struck the cross bar as Spurs continued to defend well. Marsh marking a vital block soon afterwards inside the area.

The lively Marcus Edwards was proving to be Spurs’ most creative player, one such promising run saw the starlet pick out Eyoma down the right, the fullbacks cross being met by no one inside the box. The second half saw a more clinical Barnet team, who took there chance to equalise just after the restart. The prominent Vilhete’s dangerous cross was most unfortunately turned into his own net by Maghoma who tried to clear. The young centre half was clearly distraught as he looked to the sky. Barnet went on the offensive, testing Whiteman with a thumping effort soon afterwards before forcing Maghoma into making a good block. Barnet had taken control of the game whilst Spurs struggled to get the ball out of their half. However, we did manage to create a good chance after Roles won the ball in the central area of midfield. He played in Edwards who embarked on a promising run before slipping in Harrison inside the box, his effort from a tight angle hitting the side netting. Then came a disappointing goal to concede after Nicholls put Barnet ahead on 57 minutes. It was a poor goal to concede Whiteman was caught napping with the ball at his feet, being pressed by Nicholls he panicked smashing the ball off the Barnet man, with it rebounding into the back of his net, 1-2. Barnet were in the ascendancy, Coulthirst firing narrowly over moments later. Then a bees man managed to cut in from the left before firing an effort straight at the Spurs keeper. The prominent George Marsh made a brilliant sliding challenge to halt the home team who then fired the ball across the face of the Spurs goal.

A rare Spurs attack saw Harrison and Bennetts combine well on the edge of the Barnet box, the former being tripped inside the area upon receiving the ball (should have been a penalty). The newly introduced Samuel Shashoua brought some much needed energy into the game his intricate play giving Spurs another option going forward. Barnet could well have got their third after firing over from close range, as George Marsh managed to get a good block in soon after. Roles showed good late vision to put Sterling through on goal in a golden late chance for Spurs. The strikers effort being blocked by a combination of Ross and Barnet defenders who scrambled the ball clear. But the ball managed to come straight back into the danger area, Shashoua received the ball 10 or so yards out from goal, he tried placing his effort which was well met by Ross. The final score Spurs under 21’s 1-2 Barnet. COYS

 

Player reviews:
– Alfie Whiteman: Made some decent stops and dealt with crosses well, he will however be disappointed at conceding the winner.
– TJ Eyoma: Composed and efficient dealt with danger coming down the right flank well.
– Keanan Bennetts: Produced a brilliant assist for the opener, embarked on some lovely forward runs down the left, and also done his defensive shift well.
– George Marsh: Had a great game, made some terrific blocks/challenges.
– Christian Maghoma: Done a good job, defended well and made some important blocks.
– Japhet Tanganga: Commanding performance, very composed from the skipper.
– Jack Roles: Brilliant display from Roles, on a rare start the central midfielder showcased his talents. Breaking up play really well, showing great vision and creativity. And using his ability to find pockets of space to relieve the Spurs lads of pressure on occasions.
– Luke Amos: Efficient and tidy.
– Shayon Harrison: My motm see below.
– Ryan Loft: Worked his socks off, held up the ball really well.
– Marcus Edwards: Lively throughout the game created a string of fine chances.
– Samuel Shashoua: Bright cameo, brought energy to the game and worked some good forward moves. Pressed relentlessly.

My man of the match: Shayon Harrison. This was a close one between Harrison and Roles, but I’m going to give it to the 20 year old centre forward who put in an excellent shift up top. Harrison looked very sharp (bearing in mind he had a long injury lay off) he pressed the defenders well and oozed with confidence. I’ve long been a fan of the striker since his under 18 days. Harrison made some intelligent runs against Barnet, he was lively and didn’t hesitate to try his luck from range. He took his goal brilliantly and was unlucky not to have got another. That’s four goals from seven games for the youngster since returning from a lengthy injury lay off, I really hope to see him in the first team fold again soon.

 

Barnet: Ross, Taylor, Blackman, Watson, Santos, Nelson (c), Nicholls, Fonguck (Coker 82), Coulthirst (Amaluzor 78), Vilhete, Kyei (Tutonda 78). Substitutes (not used): McKenzie-Lyle, Payne, Aghadiuno, Pascal.

Spurs U21s: Whiteman, Eyoma, Bennetts, Marsh, C Maghoma, Tanganga (c), Roles, Amos (S Shashoua 72), Harrison, Edwards (Sterling 81), Loft (Tracey 63). Substitutes (not used): O’Reilly, Skipp, Pritchard.

Goals: Barnet – Maghoma (OG) 48, Nicholls 57; Spurs – Harrison 16.

Referee: Lee Collins.

Attendance: 445.

U23’s 2017/18 statistics: Top scorers: Sterling-7
Loft-1
Duncan-2
Edwards-4
Tanganga-1
Pritchard-3
S.Shashoua-5
Bennetts: 1
Tracey-1
Harrison-4

Assists: Skipp-1
Miller-1
Sterling-
Pritchard-4
Edwards-3
Tracey-3
Eyoma-1
S.Shashoua-1
Brown-1
Sterling-3
Bennetts-3
Marsh-1

Some highlights from the game: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=If1MPbEh6pE&feature=youtu.be

 

Spurs 1-1 West Brom: (My post match thoughts)

Spurs 1-1 West Brom: (My post match thoughts)

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Spurs and West Brom, two teams with two completely different footballing ideologies, many thought our quality would outwit the struggling visitors who were without a win in there previous 11 games. That however, was not to be the case, Pochettino’s side didn’t produce an energetic attacking performance much like the one that saw us beat Dortmund away in midweek. Instead it was a slow and at times lethargic display, Spurs looked tired our players running out of options to carve through an impeccable West Brom defence. West Brom’s long ball game is something that were used to, it’s seen us come unstuck in recent seasons. Even though West Brom sacked their long term manager Tony Pulis last week, Gary Megson took temporary charge of the baggies though the tactics seemed identical to those of Pulis, long ball with a particularly defensive stance. That’s why it was such a big blow to our lads when West Brom took a surprise lead four minutes into the game. Spurs got caught in possession in there own half, former Spurs man Jake Livermore’s long ball setting the powerful Rondon through on goal, the Venezuelan internationals strength saw him shrug off Sanchez to advance into the box, before placing a shot inside the far corner of Lloris’ net, 0-1. West Brom had struck early and weren’t going to look for a second, they sat deep as Spurs looked to stamp their authority on the game but it was to no avail. Our attacking forays and crosses into the baggies area were meat and drink to the visitors, Jonny Evans and Ahmed Hegazy frustrating our forwards with their defensive prowess (especially in the air).

Eric Dier tested Ben Foster with a decent header late on in the half, but the intensity from Spurs was not there going into the interval. The second half saw a rejuvenated Spurs side take the game more to Megson’s side. We were dominating possession against a very deep lying side, we started to pass the ball around with a bit of zip and started to test Foster. But West Brom continued to hold firm, Trippier’s testing effort was blocked. Before Spurs produced a defence splitting move to finally breakthrough the baggies brick wall, Alli winning the ball off McClean before advancing down the right and whipping the ball across the face of goal. It was a fine cross which was met by Harry Kane to prod home, giving Spurs faith that they could get the winner in the remaining minutes. Sadly that winner never came, Spurs pushed the visitors far but still Pochettino’s team were just lacking a bit of creativity in front of goal. Kane and Alli came close to finding that winner towards the latter stages of the game, but it was the baggies who were to have two more golden opportunities of their own. First through substitute Hal Robson-Kanu’s powerful effort across the face of the goal. And then through the influential Salomon Rondon in the 95th minute after he met a promising cross, inside the Spurs penalty area but the striker could only hit the ball inches wide of Lloris’ goal, it should have been the winner!

I’m sure Mauricio Pochettino will be bitterly disappointed with how today’s game panned out, especially with all the possession (73%) his side had during the game and the gulf in class. As a fan sat high up in the stands at Wembley it was without doubt a hugely disappointing result for a number of reasons, big players such as Eriksen had an off day and didn’t manage to influence the game. We lacked a sharpness in our play especially in the final third which let us down on a number of occasions. Winks also had a bit of an off day, and the midfield partnership of him and Dier didn’t seem to propel us going forward, we lacked the physicality and skill of Dembele in the midfield areas. In all truth we looked tired, maybe the exertions of our performance against Dortmund in midweek took its toll. Anyhow we weren’t at the races today, but no one can expect us to grind out these results all the time even against struggling sides, our players gave there absolute all, but it just wasn’t to be on this occasion. Kudos to West Brom, who I thought were very good against us, they were well structured and defended brilliantly throughout the game, they were deserving of there point and I’ve no doubt they’ll stay up this season with performances like the one today. We go again on Tuesday with a league fixture away to Leicester, a similarly tricky game but one that I’m sure Pochettino’s lads will perform well in. COYS

 

2017/18 statistics:
Senior goal scorers: Alli-6
Davies-2
Kane-15
Eriksen-4
Son-4
Sissoko-2

Assists Eriksen-3
Trippier-7
Davies-2
Kane-4
Alli-5
Alderweireld-1
Sissoko-1
Son-2
Dier-1

 

Spurs under 19’s 3-1 Borussia Dortmund: (match report)

Spurs under 19’s 3-1 Borussia Dortmund: (match report)

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Spurs’ penultimate group game of their UEFA youth league campaign occurred yesterday, as Spurs travelled to Borussia Dortmund’s training ground to face the top of the table team. It was a spectacular and dominant display from Scott Parker’s lads, they dominated from the start, played intricate attacking football throughout and thwarted any creativity that Dortmund could come up with. The 3-1 victory for the lilywhites assures them of a place in the last 16, whilst a win against APOEL in the final group game will make sure they finish as group winners. Spurs got the game underway at Dortmund’s training ground as Spurs looked to assert there authority on the game. Tanganga made an important early block whilst the lively Samuel Shashoua done well to earn Spurs a corner down the left. The 18 year old then went on to embark on a jinking run down left, before setting Maghoma through, his first time effort being blocked by Unbehaun. Spurs’ bright start to the game saw them take an early and deserved lead courtesy of a fine move. It was an attacking move which saw Eyoma pass to Edwards down the right flank, he then picked out Shashoua in the box with a neat pass. Shashoua cooly slotting the ball into the bottom corner of Unbehaun’s net, 1-0. Spurs had put a foot hold on the game, dominating the central areas of the pitch Spurs soon pushed for a second.

And that second goal almost came a couple of minutes after our first, when Oliver Skipp’s brilliant curling long range effort cannoned off of Unbehaun’s crossbar, Skipp showing superb technique. It wasn’t to matter however, as Parker’s side doubled their lead on 18 minutes courtesy of some brilliant skill down the left from the potent Shashoua. It was a goal of real class which came about after a brilliant run down the left from the nimble footed Shashoua, managing to power his way past a Dortmund defender who got on a foot on the ball, only for left back Jaden Brown to slot home. It was a great finish from Brown who showed excellent feet to out wit a defender before tucking the ball home. Parker’s team were absolutely dominating the German club, Samuel Shashoua at the heart of Spurs’ attacking moves. Austin had been a spectator up until the 31st minute when an unfortunate goalkeeping error led to Dortmund pulling a goal back. Emre Aydinel’s free kick should have been a routine save for the youngster, but unfortunately Austin fumbled the shot which ended up squirming across the line, 2-1. Spurs threatened the home team soon afterwards through the lively Marcus Edwards whose run into the area and low centre of gravity, resulted in Osterhage bringing him down inside the box, with the referee immediately pointing to the spot. Unfortunately for Edwards (who has a remarkable penalty conversion rate) Unbehaun guessed the right way to make a top save to deny Spurs a two goal cushion.

TJ Eyoma made a decisive challenge at the other end to prevent a promising opening for Dortmund, but it was Spurs who were seeing more of the ball, creating a string of fine chances in the process. A long range effort was easily gathered by Austin before a lovely move late on in the half, saw them reestablish there two goal lead. It was an excellent goal which saw Spurs catch Die Borussen on the counter attack. Striker Kazaiah Sterling received the ball down the left flank after picking up an accurate Shashoua pass. Sterling continuing his foray towards goal before curling a sublime effort inside the far corner of Unbehaun’s net to give Spurs the lead that they so deserved going into the break. The hosts tested Spurs straight after the restart when Austin was forced into making a low save, but even though Spurs were less concerned on going forward, they continued to dictate the flow of the game. A quite comical moment occurred just after the hour mark, when a steward accidentally lifted the ball off the field of play when it hadn’t crossed the line, this resulted in some confusion for both sets of players and the referee, which resulted in Spurs giving Dortmund the ball, the last time I remember anything like that was in a senior game against West Brom some years ago. Dortmund had begun to play a more contained and defensive style of play as they looked to grow back into the game, this resulted in a far less entertaining second half. The ever impressive Shashoua done well to carry the ball away from a tricky situation, whilst the excellent Tanganga made an important block minutes later. Kazaiah Sterling forced Unbehaun into making an excellent save when he tried his luck with another curling effort from range. Meanwhile, 16 year old midfielder Paris Maghoma who had been brilliant in the centre of the park, almost scored a brilliant fourth for Spurs. After Unbehaun cleared the ball off his line, the confident 16 year old received the ball before trying a spectacular effort from over 35 yards out. And it almost came off were it not for a fine fingertip save from Unbehaun.

Substitute Jack Roles deep swinging corner was headed into the palms of Unbehaun by Tanganga shortly afterwards, Spurs had the game in control. Dortmund’s best chance of the half fell to Kampetsis on the edge of the Spurs box, his low drive flying inches wide of Austin’s goal. A late penalty shout from Sterling was waived away by the referee as Spurs went on to see out the game with a performance of the highest quality. COYS

Notable performances: Samuel Shashoua had the biggest influence on the game and was undoubtedly the man of the match. But it was an excellent team performance from Parker’s lads which saw them dominate every aspect of the game. Marcus Edwards was excellent with the ball at his feet and created some good chances, whilst Kazaiah Sterling’s fine movement and pressing up top resulted in him scoring an excellent goal. The defence was rock solid, Tanganga and Lyons-Foster snuffing out any dangerous balls that Dortmund tried to put through our defence. However, it was the performance of 16 year old Paris Maghoma in the centre of the park who won the most plaudits. I have seen Maghoma many times for our under 18’s this season and he has showed excellent potential. But his performance against Dortmund was his best so far, he was dominant in the midfield. Carried the ball well and advanced on many promising forward runs, playing his part in the third Spurs goal. I have a feeling the skilful midfielder will play a big part in our FA youth cup campaign which starts next Wednesday.

My man of the match: It has to go to winger Samuel Shashoua for a performance of the highest quality in Germany. The 18 year old starlet played a big part in all three of our goals, scoring one and creating two. And it’s not just his attacking play which was so impressive, all aspects of his play were top class against Dortmund. He tracked back well and pressed high throughout, and carried the ball out of dangerous situations deep inside his own half. The first team beckons in the not so distant future!

Dortmund (4-3-3): Unbehaun, Bruun Larsen (c), Killian, Pieper, Wanner, Osterhage, Kopacz, Sancho, Kampetsis, Aydinel, Ibrahim (Bulut 70). Substitutes (not used): Missner, Schwermann, Schell, Hawryluk, Pena-Zauner, Jano.

Spurs (4-2-3-1): Austin, Eyoma (Hinds 85), Tanganga, Lyons-Foster, Brown, Marsh, Skipp, S Shashoua (Bowden 89), P Maghoma, Edwards (c, Roles 73), Sterling. Substitutes (not used): De Bie, Reynolds, Griffiths, Richards.

Goals: Spurs – Shashoua 8, Brown 18, Sterling 44; Borussia Dortmund – Aydinel 31.

Yellow cards: Borussia Dortmund – Osterhage 90; Spurs – Tanganga 85, Austin 90+3.

Referee: Sandro Scharer (Switzerland).

Statistics: Under 19’s: Goals: Edwards-3
Bennetts-1
Sterling-3
Roles-1
Tanganga-1
S.Shashoua
Brown-1

Assists: Edwards-4
Tanganga-1
S.Shashoua-3
Sterling-1

 

Spurs under 23’s 0-2 Villarreal B: (match report)

Spurs under 23’s 0-2 Villarreal B: (match report)
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In football, teams are always going to be taught tough lessons, one of those occurred during Villarreal B’s 2-0 victory over Spurs under 23’s on Tuesday evening, in the premier league international cup. Wayne Burnett’s side were schooled from start to finish by the talented Spanish side, playing breathtaking tiki-taka football the ‘yellow submarines’ wowed from start to finish. Our lads just couldn’t keep up with them for the majority of the game, they dictated play. Though Burnett’s side made a much greater impression on the game in the second half they lacked a cutting edge in the final third and failed to really trouble the Villarreal goalkeeper. As a footballing fan I had to admire the brilliant play and movement that the Spanish side produced, the footballing culture at youth level being quite different to in England, it was fascinating to see, Villarreal’s Pedro Martinez was one of many particularly impressive players. The game ended in a pretty unpleasant way with three red cards and a massive scrap which involved some players on the bench getting involved, but the game and the experience will have been an invaluable one for our lads. The visitors got the game under way, implementing their fast paced short passing style of play on the game in the opening couple of minutes as they went on the offensive. Spurs goalkeeper Alfie Whiteman had to be alert to gather an early cross, whilst Artiles whipped a dangerous ball across the face of the goal soon afterwards.

A fast paced Villarreal side continued their bright start, forcing Whiteman into becoming a sweeper keeper to clear a brilliant forward pass. The busy Whiteman was again called into action to thwart Artiles free kick, as Spurs struggled to get the ball off the Spanish side. Some more wonderful attacking play from the visitors saw the prominent Artiles thread a lovely through ball into Moreno, his effort dashing inches wide of Whiteman’s far post. Villarreal continued to threaten and they came mighty close to breaking the deadlock when Garcia’s thunderbolt on the edge of the penalty area, was denied only by a spectacular save, with Whiteman throwing his body to the ground to tip wide. Spurs were still to have a shot on goal, when Artiles tested our defence again after he showed good feet in the box before cutting inside and firing just over, as Spurs continued to struggle with the fast tempo set by the Spanish team. Spurs were looking to respond, Bennetts attacking foray and promising cross resulting in Sterling curling well wide. The ‘yellow submarines’ soon continued their attacking onslaught, a brilliant one two on the edge of the Spurs box culminated in Simon Moreno volleying over the bar, the crowd were in awe of Villarreal’s beautiful football, they were playing our lads off the park. The brilliant Alfie Whiteman was once again called into action, the 19 year old getting a vital leg to a flick inside the box. Young Lyons-Foster who was having a good game at the back along side Maghoma. Produced a vital intervention to stop a Villarreal player from running clean through on goal.

The young defender produced more heroics moments later to brilliantly block a header, he then cleared the ball to safety. Spurs were continuing to weather the storm, young Oliver Skipp making a valiant block on 20 minutes. Whilst Spurs enjoyed a rare attack at the other end, which saw Sterling’s low cross come invitingly to Shashoua inside the box, unfortunately for him he got his footing wrong and scuffed the ball wide of goal. Some more sublime football from the away team saw them finally manage to breakthrough our defence when Artiles made the breakthrough on 31 minutes. It was a fine goal which occurred after Spurs were robbed of possession at the back, the silky skills of Artiles saw him beat a couple of Spurs defenders before curling a precise effort inside the top right corner of the goal, 1-0. Moreno’s long range effort shortly after the restart was easily gathered by the Spurs keeper, as our lads went on to break forward. Courtesy of a great long run from Bennetts which was only ended when he was brought to the floor. Despite receiving little service Harrison had impressed throughout the game, the 20 year old embarking on a weaving run before cutting inside from the right and curling an effort straight at Lazaro, that was Spurs’ first effort on target. The busy Whiteman was yet again called into action at the other end to make a low stop to deny Artiles, whilst Marsh completed an important sliding challenge seconds later. Uruguayan Franco Acosta pulled off a Harlem Globetrotter like trick towards the end of the half before volleying a fraction wide of goal.

The resulting corner kick bounced off the woodwork before Whiteman produced another great low save. Deep into added time of the first half Villarreal doubled their lead courtesy of Riera’s strike. Pedro Martinez’s powerful low drive being met by Riera who bundled the ball home at the far post. The Spurs players started the second half much more brightly as they looked to stamp their authority on the game, but this didn’t mean that the away team were going to lower their tempo. Christian Maghoma’s clearance inside the area resulted in a Villarreal forward sending a dangerous looping header at goal, which was tipped over the bar by Whiteman. A fine move from the Spanish side forced Whiteman into making a good save at his near post, minutes later. Substitute Shilow Tracey looked to give Spurs another attacking option, his powerful effort at goal forcing a decent save out of Lazaro. Spurs continued to maintain possession, a penalty shout for Tracey was waved away by the referee as Spurs continued to create some decent chances. Spurs however, were lacking a cutting edge in the final third, making Lazaro a spectator for most of the game. Burnett’s team were trying their best to attack the opposition, though this wasn’t helped by a string of time wasting incidents from the away team. The players tempers were boiling over and this resulted in some unpleasant scenes in stoppage time of the second half as both sets of players were involved in a scrap.

It all started with a challenge on Bennetts by the touchline, unhappy with the challenge he pushed a Villarreal player to the floor it all got a bit frantic after that as a sea of players got involved, Marsh appearing to strike a Villarreal player in the face as a full melee followed, one Villarreal player even deciding to kick the loose ball at a Spurs player. This involved a number of players from the bench, in the end the referee sent of three players; Keanan Bennetts, Franco Acosta(already substituted) and Simon Moreno. It was an ugly end to the game. Shilow Tracey went close with a header in the final stages of the game as Villarreal held on for a deserved 2-0 win. Up next for Burnett’s side is a home game against Chelsea on Saturday in the PL2. COYS

Player reviews:
– Alfie Whiteman: Made a string of top saves to stop the margin of defeat being higher for Spurs. Done a great job as a sweeper keeper.
– George Marsh: Energetic and efficient both at right back and in the centre of midfield which is where he operated for most of the second half.
– C.Maghoma: Tenacious along side Lyons-Foster, made some really important challenges.
– Oliver Skipp: One of our best players, put in a typically industrious display in the centre of the park. Very efficient at breaking up play.
– Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: Mature performance from the 16 year old, made a good impression at centre half including a string of fine interceptions, held his own.
– Jack Roles: Tidy in the centre of the park, wasn’t able to make those forward runs which he is so good at due to defensive responsibilities.
– Joe Pritchard: Tidy and dominant.
– Kazaiah Sterling: Showed good movement, looked a threat in front of goal.
– Shayon Harrison: Had a positive impact on the game, worked tirelessly but didn’t get the service.
– Samuel Shashoua: Pressed relentlessly, was creative with the ball at his feet and brought energy to the game.
– Shilow Tracey: The substitute made a good attacking impact on the game.
– Tariq Hinds: Good going forward, showed good feet.
– Ryan Loft: N/A.

 

My man of the match: Keanan Bennetts was our biggest attacking threat going forward. Whilst he was solid and defensively sound at left back, the 18 year old went on some brilliant attacking forays down the left and was one of our main sources of creativity. Showed brilliant feet.

 

Spurs: Whiteman, Marsh, Bennetts, Skipp, C Maghoma, Lyons-Foster, Roles (Tracey 63), Pritchard (c), Sterling, Harrison (Loft 82), S Shashoua (Hinds 63). Substitutes (not used): Austin, Reynolds.

Villarreal CF: Lazaro, Montolio (Fernandez 81), Quintilla, Riera, Bueno (c), Lozano, Artiles, Garcia (Moya 70), Acosta, Martinez (Poveda 53), Moreno. Substitutes (not used): Franquesa, J Martinez, Francisco, Gonzalez.
Goals: Villarreal – Artiles 31, Riera (45+2).

Yellow cards: Villarreal – Lozano 89, Artiles 94.

Red cards: Spurs – Bennetts 97. Villarreal – Acosta 95, Moreno 95.

Referee: Neil Hair.

Spurs under 18’s 1-2 Fulham: (match report)

Spurs under 18’s 1-2 Fulham: (match report)

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It was a disappointing day for Scott Parker’s under 18’s on Saturday morning, eager to continue their winning start to the premier league under 18 cup campaign. Parker’s side were to be defeated 2-1 by a familiar foe in London rivals Fulham. Personally I don’t think that Spurs can complain about losing today’s game, it was very similar to the league meeting between these sides just two weeks ago (also finishing in a 2-1 defeat). In the fact that Fulham were the better side who played that same counter attacking football against us, with similar consequences. Parker’s side had an off day they didn’t pose much of a threat to the cottagers, they looked at times leggy and unable to create. It’s worth noting that Parker was without key players Armando Shashoua, Dilan Markanday and Jonathan Dinzeyi. The much rotated Spurs side got proceedings under way at a bitterly cold Hotspur Way, but the game couldn’t have got off to a much worse start for Spurs who conceded inside just four minutes. When a searching long ball from a Fulham defender forced De Bie into rushing to meet Timmy Abraham inside the area. The Belgian managing to palm the ball clear, only for Fulham’s Sonny Hilton to delightfully dink the ball into the empty net. Spurs looked to respond, when Griffiths’ (who was playing on the left flank) effort flew just wide of Ashby-Hammond’s goal. Spurs were trying to find some rhythm in the game, as Fulham continued to try and catch us on the break. Some brilliant early defending from Lyons-Foster including a decisive block managed to stop Fulham doubling their advantage. A teasing cross from Chris Kelly was cleared by under 18 debutant Jubril Okedina, whilst Fulham continued to bother our defence, with Garrido nodding the ball just wide.

Then a piece of individual skill from Abraham saw him swivel around Lyons-Foster inside the box, before dragging a shot across the face of De Bie’s goal. Spurs were struggling to get a hold of the game, with it becoming pretty flat. The versatile Reynolds was Spurs’ main source of creativity with his good runs and promising crosses. But it was Fulham who continued to look the more likely to score, Hilton’s weaving run down the right saw the number 10 feed the ball into Abraham inside the area. His effort from no more than 8 yards out, went high above De Bie’s crossbar much to Spurs’ relief. A wasteful free kick from Patterson at the other end summed up Spurs’ frustrations in front of goal. Left back Tariq Hinds was on hand to make a brilliant last ditch challenge to deny Sonny Hilton a golden opportunity in front of goal. The potent Fulham forward would then force De Bie into making a decent save moments later, as Spurs went into the interval grateful that they were only trailing by one goal. It was a positive start to the second half from Spurs, Jamie Reynolds long range effort being deflected inches wide of the Fulham goal. Then came a great run from Griffiths down the left, the forward testing Ashby-Hammond with a thumping effort. Spurs continued their fine start to the second half with a nice passage of play which saw Maghoma enter the Fulham box only to be denied by a last ditch tackle. The ball then fell for Patterson whose curling low effort was blocked on the line by Spence.

Spurs finally managed to draw level on 57 minutes, and it was a special moment for the newly introduced Rayan Clarke. The pacy winger who had been injured since the summer, was to provide the equaliser. When Reynolds delightful floated cross picked out Clarke at the far post, the winger was there to power home the header, 1-1. The game was wide open, with the away side looking to regain their lead. De Bie had to be alert to deny Kelly’s powerful effort, whilst Richards nodded Tainio’s cross agonisingly wide of Ashby-Hammond’s left post at the other end. But any chance of a Spurs winner was to be ended when the referee pointed to the spot on 63 minutes following Lyons-Foster’s sliding tackle on Tahir (I personally found it harsh). Nicholas Santos Clase stepping up to clinically convert from the spot, with De Bie diving the wrong way. Fulham should have made it 3 moments later, when Hilton met a low cross inside the area. His deflected effort somehow squirming just wide of the Spurs goal, with Spence heading over from the resulting corner kick. Fulham had taken full control of the game as they went in search of another goal. Tahir’s powerful low effort forced De Bie into making a world class reaction save with his feet, the Fulham winger would come close to scoring again, minutes later. Hilton’s long range strike almost caught De Bie by surprise as Fulham comfortably saw out the final moments of the game to dent Spurs’ chances of making the knockout stages of the competition.

Player reviews: – Jonathan De Bie: Another top performance from the skipper made some important saves including an exceptional one with his feet late on.
– Maximus Tainio: Although a defensive midfielder by trade, the young Finnish youth international done a fine job at right back against Fulham.
– Tariq Hinds: Had a good game at left back, made a brilliant tackle in the first half.
– Jamie Bowden: Nice and composed in his play, got stuck in.
– Jubril Okedina: Looked a little nervous on his first under 18 game of the season, but done a fine job along side Lyons-Foster at centre half.
– Phoenix Patterson: Had a quite game, didn’t see much of the ball down the left.
– Paris Maghoma: Was good going forward and looked solid defensively, he carried the ball well in the centre of the park.
– Rodel Richards: Worked incredibly hard but didn’t get many opportunities to convert in front of goal.
– Jamie Reynolds: Switched positions numerous times through out the game but remained Spurs’ most creative player, provided a lovely assist for Clarke’s goal.
– Reo Griffiths: Positive performance, tested Ashby-Hammond on numerous occasions.
– Rayan Clarke: Made an instant impact on the game with a goal soon after coming on, was positive going forward. Really looking forward to seeing more of him over the course of the season.
– Jeremie Mukendi: Put in a good shift at right back.
– Maurizio Pochettino: N/A

My man of the match: Fresh from his brilliant display against Real Madrid under 19’s in midweek, young centre half Brooklyn Lyons-Foster was Spurs’ best player during our 2-1 defeat to Fulham. A calming presence who was brilliant under pressure, Lyons-Foster looked like a player who was an experienced second year scholar. The 16 year old showed maturity beyond his years making a string of brilliant interceptions and blocks, the penalty he conceded was quite harsh by the referee in my opinion. He has a bit of a Toby Alderweireld style to his game, he is so calm and decisive in his play.

Spurs U18s: De Bie (c), Tainio (Mukendi 72), Hinds, Bowden (Clarke 56), Okedina, Lyons-Foster, Patterson (Pochettino 77), P Maghoma, Richards, Reynolds, Griffiths. Substitutes (not used): Freeman, Statham.

Under 18’s Goals scored this season: Reo Griffiths-7
Phoenix Patterson -2
Dilan Markanday- 3
Jamie Bowden- 1
Moroyin Omolabi-1
Rayan Clarke-1

Assists: Phoenix Patterson- 4
Jamie Bowden-1
Matt Lock- 2
Jeremie Mukendi-1
Jamie Reynolds-1

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

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

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Our under 23’s visit to the East Midlands on Friday evening was one of disappointment as Wayne Burnett’s side were frustrated by a very solid and well organised Derby side (one which included 34 year old centre half Jason Shackell) and in the end, the game was won by a mere one goal margin by the rams, at pride park. In all truth it was a quite frustrating game of football and even though our lads made a good impression on the game, it wasn’t enough to break down such a tenacious Derby defence, though for Loft and Sterling it would have been a great experience to come up against such an experienced centre half. After a slow opening couple of minutes the rams almost took an early lead, after Amos was robbed of possession which resulted in a Derby forward being played through on goal, but thankfully his lofted effort was met by Austin who made a fine reaction save to thwart the ball clear. Some good work from fullback Keanan Bennetts down the left forced a Spurs corner, which was cleared from danger. Spurs were pressing high (ie:Shashoua)and were trying to force a composed Derby team in to making errors, however an error was to come inside the Spurs penalty area after a mix up from an in swinging free kick ended up with Austin taking out Bennetts, but thankfully Tanganga was there to make an important block.

We were playing the passing game, playing it out from the back, a good chance for Burnett’s side came just after the 20 minute mark. When the prominent Shashoua’s tricky forward run saw him play a one two with Harrison before curling an effort inches wide of the right post. A vital block from the efficient Spurs skipper Amos stopped a good Derby chance. Though the home side were to test us again moments later after Callum Guy beat Bennetts down the flank before whipping a cross tantalisingly across the face of goal being missed by centremeters from a Derby forward. Neither side could really take a hold of the game, veteran centre half Shackell made a good challenge to deny Harrison a dangerous opening, as the game continued to lack any clear cut chances. The rams tried to carve through our alert defence, Austin was there to make a comfortable save from Babos’ effort, Tanganga showed tremendous skill moments later to get out of a tricky situation, whilst Harrison had a low effort gobbled up by Josh Barnes at the other end. A brilliant run from target man Ryan Loft saw him perform a Ricky Villaesque run into the penalty area before forcing Barnes into making a good low stop.

 

Then, followed a bad mistake from Amos who overplayed a situation and was hence robbed of the ball by a Derby player, luckily it was fired high over the cross bar, the home side were showing some impressive attacking play. Some really clever play from Shashoua who was under pressure, saw him get out of a tricky situation, as Spurs passed the ball around with real attacking intent. Oliver Skipp who had been impressive in the centre of the park was replaced by Pritchard at the interval, who took over the captains arm band, Pritchard quickly barking instructions to his team mates. Another vital block by Tanganga on 53 minutes prevented a good attack as the game started to become a little flat. Left back Bennetts went close shortly before the hour mark after showing some nice footwork inside the Derby box before smashing an effort against the side netting. However all of Spurs’ handwork was to be undone when winger Luke Thomas gave Derby the lead. It was a counter attacking move from Derby which resulted in Thomas’ curling an effort towards goal, which was most unfortunately turned into his own net by Maghoma leaving Austin with no chance, that goal could well go to the dubious goals committee.

Marcus Edwards had a penalty shout dismissed at the other end as Spurs looked to respond, Shashoua was brought off to replace Tracey down the right. Burnett’s side struggled to create chances against a rock solid Derby outfit who were defending brilliantly against us. Spurs were being limited to out of the box chances, Harrison hit a decent low effort just wide before claiming for the corner. The game had become quite dull up until Tanganga was forced into making an important clearance to clear Wassall’s effort at the far post. Then minutes later the Tottenham centre half got a vital head on Thomas’ curling effort. We never looked like we were going to equalise, the hosts were constantly nullifying any forward threat we posed. Spurs’ best chance of the second half came after we were awarded a free kick on the edge of the area. Marcus Edwards’ good up and down effort forcing Barnes into making an excellent save. There were no more chances of note for either side as Derby held on to win 1-0. Up next for Burnett’s side is a premier league international cup tie at home to Villarreal at the Lamex stadium, on the 14th of November.

Player reviews:
– Brandon Austin: Didn’t have an awful amount of saves to make, but he made a top class one in the beginning of the first half.
– George Marsh: Played well seems to be adapting well to the role of right back. Defended well and didn’t overplay situations, also put in some good crosses.
– Christian Maghoma: Had a good game, defended well and looked solid and composed when called into action.
– Japhet Tanganga: My man of the match, I thought Tanganga put in a really good defensive performance against Derby, made more crucial interventions/blocks than any one else, and played the ball out from the back by example, rock solid performance by the 18 year old.
– Keanan Bennetts: Had a really good game looked solid down the left, and also went on some really promising runs whipping a number of good crosses into the area.
– Oliver Skipp: Put in a fine shift in the first half before being brought of at half time, imposed himself well on the game and was there at important moments.
– Luke Amos: Thought the 20 year old had a really good game, he was efficient and broke up play really well.
– Samuel Shashoua: I thought the creative Shashoua was our best player until being brought off early on in the second half, in a substitution which I personally found odd. He created openings for Spurs, showed really good close ball control especially in tight situations, and tracked back well.
– Marcus Edwards: Potent on occasions, like Shashoua Edwards showed great ball control in tight situations, he was good going forward and was unlucky not have scored his late free kick.
– Shayon Harrison: A little quieter than usual, due mainly to the fact he was playing as a second striker and that he was up against a top defence. Still he managed to hit some good efforts on goal.
– Ryan Loft: Was a great experience for the target man who held his own against Shackell, constantly tussling with the veteran centre half, put in a good shift up top.
– Joe Pritchard: Came on at the interval and put in a tireless and battling display in the middle of the park, thought the skipper done really well.
– Shilow Tracey: The substitute didn’t see much of the ball.
– Kazaiah Sterling: Positive and lively cameo up top.

My man of the match: Japhet Tanganga. My man of the match, I thought Tanganga put in a really good defensive performance against Derby, made more crucial interventions/blocks than any one else, and played the ball out from the back by example, rock solid performance by the 18 year old.