Spurs Under 23’s 4-2 Leeds United: (match report)

Wayne Burnett’s Spurs Under 23 side played their first competitive away game of the 2021/22 season on Monday afternoon, as they took on newly promoted Leeds United at their Thorp Arch training ground in the Premier League 2. Spurs won what was a fantastic game of football 4-2 and played very well throughout, but it was a really end to end game which could have went either way. Spurs lined up with Joshua Oluwayemi in goal, while a back four consisting of Kallum Cesay, captain Brooklyn Lyons-Foster, Tobi Omole and Marcel Lavinier lined up in front of him. Matthew Craig and Harvey White started in central midfield, and Nile John and Jack Clarke started out on the flanks, either side of CAM Alfie Devine. Dilan Markanday once again led the line for Spurs after his excellent performance against Chelsea. Spurs got the game underway on a sunny afternoon in Yorkshire, but after former Leeds player Jack Clarke conceded a free-kick in a promising position, Leeds had an early chance to take the lead. However, Sam Greenwood’s resulting effort went over Oluwayemi’s crossbar. After Clarke lost the ball Lewis Bate played a brilliant through-ball towards Joe Geldhart, but after entering the Spurs box his low effort was saved relatively comfortably by Oluwayemi. Amari Miller then hit an effort wide from the the left side of the Spurs box, before Charlie Cresswell headed wide from Lewis Bate’s corner kick.

After connecting with Greenwood’s cross Joe Geldhart forced a save out of Oluwayemi, before the Spurs goalkeeper then accidentally gave the ball to Sean McGurk. However, the former Wigan player took his effort quickly and it was saved by Oluwayemi, who then tipped behind an effort from the same player moments later. Oluwayemi gathered Joe Geldhart’s header from the resulting corner kick, before Lyons-Foster cleared away Liam McCarron’s cross, and then the impressive Lewis Bate hit an effort wide from distance. Geldhart had an effort deflected just wide of the Spurs goal from the edge of their box, as Leeds continued to cause Spurs problems. However, after Spurs won a corner kick the visitors took a slightly unexpected lead. Harvey White’s fine delivery from the corner came down for Dilan Markanday, who controlled the ball well before turning and hitting a powerful and simply unstoppable low effort into the bottom left hand corner of the Leeds goal, 1-0. After receiving Markanday’s pass Nile John went forward with the ball down the right flank, but the ball then ended up coming to Kallum Cesay inside the Leeds box, but his effort on goal was tipped behind by Leeds goalkeeper Kristoffer Klaesson. After Greenwood received Geldhart’s cross inside the Spurs penalty area the former Arsenal player chested the ball down for Lewis Bate, but his first time effort went over Oluwayemi’s goal.

After latching onto Harvey White’s header Dilan Markanday received the ball with his back to the Leeds goal. The Spurs forward then worked his way around Charlie Cresswell and Jack Jenkins with some spectacular skill, before then entering the Leeds penalty area (down the left side of their box) and hitting an unstoppable effort into the roof of their goal, 2-0. An excellent ball over the top of the Leeds defence from Harvey White then set Markanday through on goal, shortly after the restart. Markanday went into the Leeds box before eventually having a shot on goal, but Liam McCarron had got back really well to make a sliding block at the last moment as Spurs won a corner kick. Leeds got a goal back shortly afterwards after Greenwood received Lewis Bate’s pass out on the right flank. Greenwood then crossed the ball really well for Joe Geldhart to latch onto inside the Spurs box, and his effort on the volley went into the Spurs goal, despite the very best efforts of Lyons-Foster on the line, 2-1. After Devine had won a free-kick on the edge of the Leeds box, Harvey White saw his effort hit the Leeds wall, before then seeing his follow up effort also blocked. After receiving the ball on the left side of the Spurs box, Amari Miller saw his effort go over the Spurs goal, after Spurs had lost the ball in midfield. However, after Cesay brought down Miller from behind inside the Spurs box, Leeds were awarded a penalty. And Sam Greenwood then stepped up to hit the ball into the left hand corner of Oluwayemi’s goal, 2-2.

After Harvey White had made a strong challenge there was a bit of a coming together between both sets of players, but the situation was calmed down quite quickly, and in the end Harvey White was shown a yellow card. Before the half was up Nile John, who had been growing into the game managed to latch onto a loose ball in the middle of the pitch, he then eventually slipped the ball into the feet of Markanday inside the Leeds box. Markanday then skilfully worked his way around Kristoffer Klaesson before slotting home, 3-2. Harvey White then had an effort from distance saved by Klaesson before the referee sounded his whistle for half-time. Leeds got the second half underway, and an early back pass from Nohan Kenneh to Klaesson was deemed by the referee to have been a back pass, resulting in a Spurs free-kick just inside the Leeds box. Devine laid the ball off to Clarke, whose powerful first time effort went wide of the Leeds goal. After having an effort blocked Leeds substitute Crysencio Summerville then saw his low cross from the right flank tipped away by Oluwayemi well. A good Spurs move at the opposite end of the pitch ended in Cesay finding Devine with a pass into the centre of the Leeds box, but the midfielders effort went narrowly wide of the Leeds goal. Tobi Omole then did really well to block Summerville’s effort on the line, before Oluwayemi was then unable to gather Amari Miller’s cross from the left, but then was able to make a spectacular save moments later. Oluwayemi doing really well to tip Geldhart’s brilliant effort from the edge of the Spurs box onto his crossbar.

Lyons-Foster cleared away the lively Lewis Bate’s cross, before John advanced forward with the ball, showing good pace before winning a free-kick in a good position. However, Clarke’s resulting effort was was blocked by the Leeds wall, and he was replaced by Romaine Mundle shortly afterwards. Oluwayemi then saved Geldhart’s effort on goal well, before gathering the ball bravely at the feet of Greenwood. The very busy Joshua Oluwayemi then punched away a Leeds free-kick, before Spurs got their fourth goal of the game. Matthew Craig passed the ball to Nile John, who worked his way past a Leeds player on the edge of their box before finding the bottom right hand corner of their goal with a brilliant curling effort, 4-2. Shortly after the game got started again Mundle cut inside from the left flank before hitting a low effort which was saved by Klaesson. Lyons-Foster then headed over Harvey White’s corner kick, before Yago Santiago came on to replace Dilan Markanday. After receiving the ball down the left hand side of the Spurs box, Sam Greenwood hit the ball well over the Spurs goal in what was the final piece of action of the game. Spurs will be looking to continue their really good start to the season when they host Arsenal at Hotspur Way on Friday.

Player reviews:

  • Joshua Oluwayemi: Making a number of impressive and very important saves throughout the game, goalkeeper Joshua Oluwayemi got better as the game went on, and he made some really important and impressive saves, with the very best one being the one to push Joe Geldhart’s excellent effort onto his crossbar in the second half.
  • Kallum Cesay: Making his competitive Under 23 debut Kallum Cesay got forward well down the right flank and he did well to create a good chance for Alfie Devine, who came very close to scoring from that chance.
  • Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: The Spurs captain had a very good game in central defence, in my opinion. Lyons-Foster made some really good clearances, kept really fine positioning throughout and also really impressed with his excellent distribution out of defence.
  • Tobi Omole: Playing alongside Lyons-Foster on the left side of defence, Tobi Omole made some important defensive interventions and he also had a calming effect on the game from central defence.
  • Marcel Lavinier: Playing at left-back for this game Marcel Lavinier liked to get forward and try and link up with winger Jack Clarke on the left flank.
  • Matthew Craig: It was a very hardworking performance once again as the deepest of the two midfielders by Scotland youth international Matthew Craig. He worked well alongside the more experienced Harvey White, was good on the ball and also got the assist for Nile John’s late goal.
  • Harvey White: Showing real craft and tenacity in midfield, I thought that Harvey White performed excellently well as a number eight. The midfielder got the two assists for Dilan Markanday’s first two goals, before then creating a brilliant chance for Markanday shortly afterwards with a great pass on his weaker right foot. Pressing the opposition players well throughout the game, the 19 year old made a real impression on the match from central midfield in both a defensive and forward thinking way.
  • Nile John: Starting off on the right flank before gradually playing a lot more central as the game went on, Nile John got a first half assist before later doing really well to score his first goal of the season. John went on some really clever forward runs with the ball, and he made a really good impression on the game in the second half.
  • Alfie Devine: The CAM worked tirelessly off the ball and his positioning on the day was good, and he came very close to scoring his first goal of the season with a low effort in the second half.
  • Jack Clarke: Playing out on the left wing Jack Clarke didn’t get on the ball in forward positions a lot during his time on the pitch, as Spurs seemed to focus more on playing the ball down the right flank. He did however, work very hard for the team.
  • Dilan Markanday: My man of the match, see below.
  • Romaine Mundle: The second half substitute took up a position on the left flank, worked hard and also had an effort saved by Klaesson.
  • Yago Santiago: The late substitute went on one clever and skilful run down the right flank during his time on the pitch.

My man of the match: Dilan Markanday was absolutely unstoppable against Leeds today, and his determination to make a difference really did make the difference for Spurs on the day. Markanday took all three of his goals excellently well, showing great skill on all three occasions, and his movement off the ball was very good throughout his time on the pitch. I’m really hoping that he is involved in the Spurs first team squad for their match on Thursday.

Spurs Under 18’s 2-7 Chelsea: (match report) 

Spurs’ Under 18 side took on Chelsea on Saturday morning at Hotspur Way, in what was Spurs’ first home league game of the season. Spurs Under 18’s head coach Stuart Lewis saw his side lose 7-2 on the day, but the scoreline didn’t entirely reflect how the game went, and key decisions on the day did go against Spurs. Spurs lined up with Adam Hayton in goal, while a back four consisting of Maxwell McKnight, captain Alfie Dorrington, Will Andiyapan and Jordan Hackett lined up in front of him. Dante Cassanova and Rio Kyerematen started in central midfield, and Jamie Donley and Riley Owen started out on the flanks, either side of CAM Khalon Haysman. Jaden Williams led the line for Spurs. Spurs got the game underway and it was an even start to the game. After Jaden Williams had won the ball off of Joshua Tobin he played the ball through to Khalon Haysman down the left hand side of the Spurs box, but Haysman’s effort went just wide of the Chelsea goal. Hackett made a good and important challenge on Leo Castledine inside the Spurs box, before Haysman had an effort on goal blocked behind for a Spurs corner kick. Haysman had another effort blocked a couple of moments later, this time by Alfie Gilchrist. Dante Cassanova had an effort on goal blocked before at the other end of the pitch he cleared Lewis Hall’s low cross, after the Chelsea player had gone on a really good forward run.

It was a really end to end game, and after the lively Jamie Donley had an effort on goal blocked, Spurs’ Adam Hayton had to make his first save of the game to stop Lewis Hall from finding the back of the net, from the edge of the Spurs box. A good Chelsea move however, ended in them scoring their first goal of the game. After Brodi Hughes found Ronnie Stutter on the left hand side of the Spurs box he found the right hand corner of the Spurs goal, 0-1. Hayton did well to tip over Jimi Tauriainen’s effort from a Chelsea free-kick before Jordan Hackett did well to block Ronnie Stutter’s effort inside the Spurs box. Hayton was again called in to action a couple of minutes later, firstly to push away Lewis Hall’s effort, before then saving Jimi Tauriainen’s effort on the follow up. However, after Alfie Dorrington was deemed to have fouled Edwin Andersson by tripping him, after he had entered the Spurs box, the referee pointed straight to the spot. Lewis Hall hit his following penalty kick into the roof of Adam Hayton’s goal, 0-2. Dorrington recovered well by blocking an effort from the Chelsea goalscorer shortly after the game got underway again, before Edwin Andersson hit an effort well over the Spurs goal. Brodi Hughes hit an effort wide of the Spurs goal from out on the right flank, before Spurs then won a penalty of their own, after Donley was tripped down the right hand side of the Chelsea box by Billy Gee.

Donley stepped up to calmly find the bottom right hand corner of the Chelsea goal, 1-2. Haysman saw his effort deflected over the Chelsea goal, and then shortly before half-time Donley received Owen’s pass inside the Chelsea box, but his low effort was well tipped behind by Chelsea goalkeeper Teddy Curd. Chelsea got the second half underway and Andiyapan came close to drawing Spurs level, after his headed effort from Cassanova’s cross went just over the Chelsea goal. However, Chelsea were awarded another penalty after McKnight had in the referees view fouled Richard Olise inside the Spurs box. It was a controversial moment in the game, but it was also a decisive one as Lewis Hall found the right hand corner of Hayton’s goal from his effort, 1-3. Alfie Dorrington received a yellow card before Ronnie Stutter squared the ball to Jimi Tauriainen from the left flank, and he finished past Hayton inside the Spurs box, 1-4. Williams forced a save out of Teddy Curd, before Hayton stopped Edwin Andersson’s effort from going in at the other end of the pitch. Spurs’ day got even worse after Jamie Donley was shown a straight red card after making a strong challenge to try and win the ball off of Jimi Tauriainen. Thomas Bloxham came on to replace Riley Owen, and then a couple of moments later Leo Castledine curled over a free-kick.

The impressive Adam Hayton saved Edwin Andersson’s effort on goal, before Jaden Williams hit the post with a powerful effort from just outside the Chelsea box.  Spurs made another change as Roshaun Mathurin came on to replace Maxwell McKnight, but just before that Kyerematen blocked Leo Castledine’s effort on goal impressively. The newly introduced Roshaun Mathurin soon started making an impact, and after going on a surging forward run (after latching onto Will Andiyapan’s clearance) from inside the Spurs half he found the bottom left hand corner of the Chelsea goal, from the edge of their penalty area, 2-4. However, any chance of Spurs getting back into the game was ended after Chelsea made it 5-2 shortly after the match was restarted. Substitute Malik Mothersille managed to get past Andiyapan after showing good pace, and later Hayton inside the Spurs box, before slotting home, 2-5. William Andiyapan was then replaced by Brandon Bryan-Waugh. Haysman hit an effort over the Chelsea crossbar from quite far out, and then Brandon Bryan-Waugh did really well to block Malik Mothersille’s effort off the line, from inside the Spurs box, before Hayton then made yet another save. Leo Castledine’s deflected effort went just wide of the Spurs goal, before Derrick Abu’s brilliant effort from distance beat Hayton to make it 2-6.

The creative Roshaun Mathurin had an effort saved by Teddy Curd, before Edwin Andersson connected with a cut back inside the Spurs box, but his effort went over the crossbar. Edwin Andersson then found the roof of the Spurs net from inside the Tottenham box, to make it 7-2 to Chelsea. Richard Olise then curled just over from close range, before Mathurin had an effort on goal blocked, and then Williams curled an effort wide of the Chelsea goal. The final whistle went shortly afterwards. Spurs’ next game is away to Birmingham City, next Saturday.

Player reviews:

  • Adam Hayton: The Spurs goalkeeper made a big number of saves against Chelsea, and in all truth I don’t think that you could say that any of the Chelsea goals could have been kept out by Hayton. He played well.
  • Maxwell McKnight: Playing at right-back for this game, Maxwell McKnight liked to get forward and in total he completed 75 minutes of the game.
  • Alfie Dorrington: The Spurs captain made a number of good blocks on the day.
  • Will Andiyapan: My man of the match, see below.
  • Jordan Hackett: The left-back went forward well on occasions and made some good challenges during the first half.
  • Dante Cassanova: Dante Cassanova operated as the deepest Spurs midfielder throughout the match.
  • Rio Kyerematen: Showing some good skill on the ball and getting forward when he could, Rio Kyerematen completed the whole of Saturday’s match. 
  • Jamie Donley: Starting the game out on the right flank, Jamie Donley was lively, inventive and hardworking during his time on the pitch, and after doing well to win a penalty (which he scored from) he also came close to scoring a second goal. Unfortunately he was sent off during the second half, in what was a controversial moment in the game.
  • Khalon Haysman: The CAM tried his best to influence the game, and he tried his luck on goal on numerous occasions.
  • Riley Owen: Playing out on the left flank during his time on the pitch, Riley Owen was replaced during the second half by Thomas Bloxham.
  • Jaden Williams: Leading the line for the second consecutive game, Jaden Williams in my opinion led the line well, and he was unlucky not to score late on in the game.
  • Thomas Bloxham: The second half substitute mainly played out on the left flank.
  • Roshaun Mathurin: Very creative when he came on, Roshaun Mathurin scored a well taken goal, and he always looked potent whenever he received the ball near to the Chelsea penalty area.
  • Brandon Bryan-Waugh: The late substitute made one really good late block to prevent a certain Chelsea goal.

My man of the match: Will Andiyapan. Playing as a left-sided central defender in a back four during his time on the pitch, first year scholar Will Andiyapan was without doubt Spurs’ best player on the day. The Wales youth international made some really good tackles, read the game well and showed some really good pace on occasions. He also got the assist for Roshaun Mathurin’s goal, but this was a strong performance from the Watford born player, despite the scoreline.

Spurs Under 23’s 2-2 Chelsea: (match report)

Spurs’ Under 23 side got their Premier League 2 season underway on Monday evening at Stevenage’s Lamex Stadium, when they hosted 2020/21 Division One runners up Chelsea. Wayne Burnett’s side were in my opinion the better team during the match and they were very unlucky not to win it, as it ended 2-2. Spurs lined up with Joshua Oluwayemi in goal, while Marcel Lavinier, captain Brooklyn Lyons-Foster, Malachi Fagan-Walcott and Ryan Sessegnon formed the back four. Matthew Craig and Harvey White teamed up in central midfield, and Romaine Mundle and J’Neil Bennett started out on the flanks, either side of CAM Alfie Devine. Dilan Markanday led the line for Spurs. Chelsea got the game underway on a sunny evening in Hertfordshire, and a good early move for the away side saw them get into quite a promising position. However, the move ended with Bryan Fiabema having a low effort saved by Spurs’ goalkeeper Joshua Oluwayemi, from the edge of the Spurs box. Malachi Fagan-Walcott then did well to stop Charlie Webster from going into the Spurs penalty area, before Dilan Markanday impressively went past a couple of Chelsea players before passing the ball to J’Neil Bennett on the left flank. Bennett then crossed the ball for Devine, whose headed effort was well tipped over the crossbar by Chelsea goalkeeper Lucas Bergstrom.

From the following corner kick which was taken by Harvey White, the ball eventually ended up falling for Alfie Devine, who hit the ball over the Chelsea crossbar, in what was a difficult chance for the former Wigan Athletic player. Romaine Mundle had an effort blocked behind off a Chelsea defender from J’Neil Bennett’s cross, before a good ball over the top of the Chelsea defence from Harvey White ended up coming to Dilan Markanday who then entered the Chelsea penalty area, but didn’t have any teammates in support. However, a couple of moments later and after Spurs couldn’t clear the ball and it ended up deflecting off of Chelsea player Dion Rankine, the ball came to Harvey Vale, who was brought down by Oluwayemi, resulting in the referee pointing to the penalty spot. From the resulting penalty kick Harvey Vale’s powerful effort went just beyond Oluwayemi and into the back of the net, 0-1. Shortly after the game was restarted Bashir Humphreys blocked Romaine Mundle’s effort inside the Chelsea box, before Devine won the ball off of George Nunn and brought the ball forward before forcing a good save from Lucas Bergstrom. Bennett then came inside from the left flank before seeing his fine curling effort on goal saved well by the Chelsea goalkeeper. Bennett then had an effort blocked shortly afterwards.

From a Harvey White free-kick defender Malachi Fagan-Walcott had a headed effort on goal saved by Bergstrom, before seeing a following effort from another Harvey White free-kick go just wide of the Chelsea goal. Lyons-Foster cleared away Charlie Webster’s effort on goal, while Spurs then went forward down the other end of the pitch, with Harvey White whipping a promising cross right in front of the Chelsea goal. Spurs continued to play really well, and after Lavinier headed behind J’Neil Bennett’s cross, Spurs fell further behind after Chelsea got their second goal of the game. A loose pass was latched onto by Harvey Vale, who went on a surging forward run before calmly slotting the ball into the bottom right hand corner of Oluwayemi’s goal, 0-2. After Markanday was fouled on the edge of the Chelsea box Harvey White stepped up to whip a low effort towards goal. His effort was saved by Bergstrom, with the ball coming to Lyons-Foster, and although he managed to find the back of the net, one of the linesmen had his flag up to rule it out for offside, in what was the final piece of action from the first half. Spurs got the second half underway and the second half got off to a great start for Wayne Burnett’s side, who got a goal back on 48 minutes. A really nice pass from Devine found Marcel Lavinier, who then slipped the ball into the feet of Markanday down the left side of the Chelsea box. And Markanday did well to get the ball beyond the Chelsea goalkeeper and into the goal, 1-2.

A good cross from Lyons-Foster was cleared before Lavinier made an important defensive intervention inside his own penalty area. Oluwayemi saved Charlie Webster’s effort before Spurs equalised through J’Neil Bennett. After receiving Alfie Devine’s pass out on the left flank Bennett came inside onto his right foot and curled a really good effort beyond Lucas Bergstrom and into the far corner of the goal, 2-2. Yago Santiago came on to replace Romaine Mundle, and soon after he came on and received the ball and went forward he had an effort saved by Bergstrom, who then saved a deflected effort from Bennett soon afterwards. The constantly impressive Alfie Devine won the ball in central midfield before travelling forward with the ball and passing it to Bennett, who had an effort blocked behind for a corner kick. Markanday hit over an effort from a Harvey White free-kick before Lyons-Foster had an effort from distance saved. The creative Harvey White then managed to find Markanday down the right side of the Chelsea box, but he was fouled by Bergstrom, resulting in a penalty for Spurs. Harvey White’s effort from the resulting penalty kick was saved by the Chelsea goalkeeper, before then being cleared away.

A lofted pass from Michael Craig found former Chelsea player Marcel Lavinier inside the Chelsea box, but his effort was saved by the Chelsea goalkeeper. A late Spurs substitution saw Rafferty Pedder replace Dilan Markanday, before the referee blew the full-time whistle.

Player reviews:

  • Joshua Oluwayemi: The Spurs goalkeeper didn’t actually have an awful lot to do on Monday night. He did make some important but fairly routine saves and he came close to saving the penalty kick that he conceded, but he could have done nothing to prevent Harvey Vale’s second goal of the game.
  • Marcel Lavinier: Making some strong defensive interventions and also joining the forward players well when going forward, I thought that the right-back who later switched to left-back had a good game. Lavinier got the assist for Markanday’s goal.
  • Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: The Spurs captain started the game at RCB alongside Malachi Fagan-Walcott, before then starting the second half at right-back, where I thought that he did well.
  • Malachi Fagan-Walcott: Playing at left-sided centre-back for this game, the 19 year old kept good positioning in my opinion and he came close to scoring in the first half.
  • Ryan Sessegnon: The Spurs first team player got 45 minutes at left-back to help build up his fitness after missing a lot of pre-season because of injury.
  • Matthew Craig: The deepest of the two central midfielders, Matthew Craig was tigerish in midfield, and he kept the ball moving in the central areas well.
  • Harvey White: It was a very good and creative performance from Harvey White in central midfield against Chelsea. The 19 year old created numerous chances and his set-pieces were very good against Chelsea. He was however, unlucky to miss his late penalty kick.
  • Romaine Mundle: The winger operated out on the right flank and he linked up well with right-back Marcel Lavinier during his time on the pitch.
  • Alfie Devine: Making some really clever passes from the CAM role, moving really well off the ball and also working really hard for the team. Alfie Devine was involved in the build up to both of Spurs’ goals against Chelsea, and I thought that he was influential throughout the match. 
  • J’Neil Bennett: Constantly going on good forward runs down the left flank, unpredictable winger J’Neil Bennett had a really fine game for Spurs. The scorer of an excellently taken goal, Bennett could have scored more goals on the another day.
  • Dilan Markanday: My man of the match. See below.
  • Marqes Muir: The centre-half came on to replace Ryan Sessegnon for the second half, and he did well alongside Malachi Fagan-Walcott. 
  • Yago Santiago: The second half substitute had an effort on goal saved soon after he entered the pitch.
  • Rafferty Pedder: N/A.

My man of the match: Dilan Markanday. Starting the game as a centre-forward Dilan Markanday (19) impressed with his movement off the ball and the really hardworking player showed some tremendous skill to go past Chelsea players as if they weren’t even there on occasions. He took his goal really well from a difficult angle and he also won a penalty kick late on in the match. This was an excellent performance from Markanday, who later operated out on the right flank towards the end of Monday’s game.

Spurs Under 23’s 1-1 Barnet FC: (match report)

Spurs’ Under 23 side played their final pre-season friendly on Saturday when they faced National League side Barnet FC at The Hive Stadium. Wayne Burnett’s side recorded a 1-1 draw with Barnet on the day, in what was probably a fair result. Spurs started the match with Joshua Oluwayemi in goal, while a back four consisting of Marcel Lavinier, Maksim Paskotši, Malachi Fagan-Walcott and Dennis Cirkin lined up in front of him. Captain Brooklyn Lyons-Foster started the game as a number four, while Harvey White started the game as a number eight, and Alfie Devine a number ten. Dilan Markanday and Romaine Mundle started the game out on the flanks and J’Neil Bennett led the line for Spurs. Spurs got the game underway at The Hive Stadium, but it was the home side who had the first real chance of the game. Barnet’s number seven (the team-sheet had no numbers on it) headed wide number ten’s free kick, before Marcel Lavinier came close to latching onto Alfie Devine’s lofted pass at the other end of the pitch. The Barnet goalkeeper, who was often positioned quite high on the pitch, would come out to clear the ball just in time before Lavinier could get to the ball. Shortly afterwards and this time inside the Spurs penalty area Lavinier had to block number seven’s effort on goal, before Markanday blocked the same players effort on the follow up.

Markanday had a deflected effort saved by the Barnet goalkeeper, and then after winning the ball on the left flank and surging forward, Romaine Mundle forced a save from the Barnet goalkeeper. A Barnet throw-in which was headed towards Joshua Oluwayemi’s goal by their number five went just wide of the Spurs goal after coming off of a Spurs player last. After Devine had played a quick one-two with Markanday, the Spurs midfielder brought the ball towards the edge of the Spurs box, before being fouled and brought down by number four. Harvey White’s resulting free-kick came off the Barnet wall before going wide. Oluwayemi tipped over a cross from Barnet’s right-back, before he then gathered a cross from their left-back. At the back post inside the Spurs box, and after connecting with number three’s cross, Barnet’s number ten clipped an effort wide of the Spurs goal. After playing the ball down the right to Dilan Markanday on the right flank, the Barnet born player showed some good skill on the ball inside the Barnet box. He then tried to square the ball to Harvey White, but his pass was intercepted and then cleared. After receiving Dilan Markanday’s pass on the edge Barnet box Harvey White curled a first time effort with his weaker foot just wide of the goal. A couple of minutes later Mundle received Devine’s back-heeled pass on the left flank. He then traveled forward with the ball before coming inside onto his right foot in the Barnet box and curling an effort narrowly wide of the goal.

A long kick forward from Spurs goalkeeper Joshua Oluwayemi was brought down and controlled well by Markanday on the right flank. He then advanced forward with the ball before trying his luck on goal. However, his effort was saved by the Barnet goalkeeper, but Mundle was there to slot home on the follow up, 1-0. The home side got the second half underway and an early penalty appeal from Markanday was turned down by the referee, before Harvey White hit an effort over from long range. Barnet’s number ten then squared the ball to their trialist centre-forward after getting beyond Dennis Cirkin down the right flank. The Barnet centre-forward finished with a first time effort into the bottom right hand corner of Oluwayemi’s goal from inside the Spurs box, 1-1. The alert Brooklyn Lyons-Foster did well to make a block from number 20’s effort, before the Barnet player hit the ball wide of the goal from the edge of the box on the follow up, and then Malachi Fagan-Walcott blocked another Barnet effort on goal. Spurs then made a whole number of changes as Romaine Mundle, J’Neil Bennett, Maksim Paskotši, Brooklyn Lyons-Foster and Dennis Cirkin were replaced by Yago Santiago, Max Robson, Rafferty Pedder, Marqes Muir and Matthew Craig respectively. 

Soon after the game started again Marqes Muir made an important block, before Malachi Fagan-Walcott headed clear a long Barnet throw-in. Spurs made two more substitutions as Michael Craig and Thimothée Lo-Tutala came on to replace Alfie Devine and Joshua Oluwayemi respectively. The impressive Marqes Muir did well to clear a cross from Barnet’s right-back, with the ball then coming to a Barnet player on the edge of the Spurs box, but Fagan-Walcott was able to clear his resulting effort. Yago Santiago’s low but powerful effort from the edge of the Barnet box was saved really well by their goalkeeper. Muir then headed wide from Harvey White’s corner kick before Spurs made their final change of the game as Jeremy Kyezu came on to replace Dilan Markanday at left-back. Number 19 hit a deflected effort wide, and then a couple of minutes after Muir anticipated a Barnet forward move well to make a really important challenge on their number 20 inside the Spurs box, to win the ball and then get it clear. After Harvey White played a clever one-two with Santiago he whipped an effort towards the Barnet goal from the edge of their box, but the goalkeeper made a fine reaction save to tip the ball behind. The final bit of action from the game came from a deflected Harvey White cross which fell to Fagan-Walcott inside the Spurs box, but his volleyed effort on the turn went wide. Spurs get their Premier League 2 season underway on Monday the 16th of August, when they host Chelsea at the Lamex Stadium.

Player reviews:

  • Joshua Oluwayemi: The Spurs goalkeeper didn’t actually have a lot to do today, but I thought that he dealt well with crosses into his box.
  • Marcel Lavinier: It was another solid performance from the 20 year old right-back, who made some important blocks, got forward well and also read the game well. 
  • Maksim Paskotši: Playing at RCB the Estonia international formed a good defensive partnership with Malachi Fagan-Walcott on the day, in my opinion.
  • Malachi Fagan-Walcott: Good in the air and always alert in defence, LCB Malachi Fagan-Walcott put in a good defensive performance against Barnet. 
  • Dennis Cirkin: Playing at left-back Dennis Cirkin liked to get forward a lot down the left flank during his time on the pitch.
  • Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: The deepest of the three Spurs midfielders liked to get on the ball and he also made an important block during the second half. I thought that he did well.
  • Harvey White: A player who I thought grew in to the game as it went on, Spurs’ number eight Harvey White was playing in a more advanced midfield position than usual today.
  • Dilan Markanday: Starting the game out on the right flank as a winger, Dilan Markanday went on some tricky forward runs and he showed good skill on the ball, and was always looking to go forward with it. Markanday created our goal before later filling in at left-back for a short time.
  • Alfie Devine: The most advanced of the three midfielders worked hard and often dropped deep to get on the ball. His standout moment came from his fine run towards the edge of the Barnet box, before being fouled and winning a free-kick in the first half.
  • Romaine Mundle: Starting out on the left-wing against Barnet, the scorer of our only goal of the game also went on some good forward runs.
  • J’Neil Bennett: Playing out of position as a centre-forward, the 19 year old winger tried his best even though he wasn’t playing in his usual position.
  • Yago Santiago: The midfielder occupied the left flank during some of the second half, and he came close to finding the goal on one occasion.
  • Max Robson: Replacing J’Neil Bennett up front, midfielder Max Robson worked hard off the ball but didn’t have much service.
  • Rafferty Pedder: The midfielder went out to play on the right flank during his time on the pitch.
  • Marqes Muir: My man of the match, see below.
  • Matthew Craig: After replacing Lyons-Foster, Matthew Craig came on to play as the deepest midfielder. 
  • Michael Craig: Michael Craig came on to partner his twin brother Matthew in central midfield during the second half.
  • Thimothée Lo-Tutala: The Spurs goalkeeper didn’t have much to do after coming on.
  • Jeremy Kyezu: The defender came on late in the game to play at left-back. 

My man of the match: Marqes Muir. Although he only came on in the 63rd minute of the game I thought that the centre-half (he played at RCB) performed really well after coming on. Making an important clearance, block and challenge, the composed defender also won all of his headers, and he was always alert. Muir has been very impressive in pre-season for Wayne Burnett’s side.

Spurs Under 23’s 4-0 Enfield Town: (match report)

Wayne Burnett’s Spurs Under 23 side played their second friendly of pre-season on Tuesday evening, when they took on Enfield Town at the Queen Elizabeth II Stadium. Spurs won the match comfortably, winning it 4-0 and playing with real confidence throughout. Spurs started the game with Thimothée Lo-Tutala in goal, whilst Marcel Lavinier, Marqes Muir, captain Jubril Okedina and Jordan Hackett lined up in front of him. Matthew Craig and Yago Santiago teamed up in central midfield, and Romaine Mundle and J’Neil Bennett played out on the flanks, either side of CAM Dilan Markanday. Kion Etete led the line for Spurs. Enfield got the game underway and Spurs goalkeeper Lo-Tutala had to gather an early delivery from an Enfield free-kick. An early effort from the potent Dilan Markanday was saved by Enfield goalkeeper Nathan McDonald, before J’Neil Bennett then had a shot blocked by Rian Bray inside the Enfield box, with the ball then coming to Romaine Mundle, who forced another save out of McDonald. It was a good start from Spurs and after Santiago had curled an effort over the Enfield goal Spurs again went in search of the opening goal. After receiving Santiago’s pass inside the Enfield box Mundle had an effort saved by McDonald before Kion Etete came very close to scoring. Markanday’s clever pass over the top of the Enfield defence was met by the head of Etete, who nodded the ball past the out rushing McDonald, but the ball was cleared off of the line by Charley O’Keefe before rebounding the ball wide of Etete.

Jubril Okedina blocked an Enfield triallist’s effort inside the Spurs box before Mundle hit an effort over the Enfield crossbar at the other end of the pitch. After receiving Bennett’s pass Markanday forced a low save out of McDonald in the Enfield box. Mundle’s flicked effort from Markanday’s following corner kick was gathered by McDonald, before Kion Etete headed J’Neil Bennett’s cross wide. After putting pressure on McDonald in the Enfield goal Kion Etete came close to winning the ball off of the Enfield goalkeeper. Marqes Muir cleared a cross from the right before J’Neil Bennett’s diving header from Marcel Lavinier’s cross at the other end went narrowly wide of the Enfield goal, in what was a great chance for Spurs. A curling effort from distance from Bennett wasn’t properly caught by McDonald, with Markanday claiming that he had been caught by the Enfield goalkeeper when trying to get to the loose ball inside the penalty area. In the 24th minute of the game J’Neil Bennett scored the opener for Spurs. After receiving the ball on the left flank the 19 year old winger came inside onto his right foot before curling an unstoppable effort past McDonald and into the right hand corner of the Enfield goal, 1-0. After Mundle had passed the ball to Lavinier inside the Enfield box the right-back hit an effort wide on the turn. Then after receiving Etete’s pass on the left side of the pitch J’Neil Bennett came inside again onto his right foot before curling a spectacular dipping effort towards the Enfield goal. His effort came off the underside of the crossbar and appeared to cross the line from where I was standing, but the officials said to play on.

After Etete played a one-two with Bennett the Spurs centre-forward finished from the left side of the Enfield penalty area with a powerful strike which came off the underside of the Enfield crossbar, 2-0. Okedina blocked an Enfield triallist’s effort soon after the game started again, before a long throw from an Enfield player fell to another Enfield player inside the Spurs box, but Marqes Muir blocked his effort really well. Spurs made it 3-0 a matter of moments later after captain Jubril Okedina flicked home Dilan Markanday’s corner kick into the bottom left hand corner of the Enfield goal. Bennett hit an effort over the Enfield crossbar from down the left side of their penalty area, before Markanday had an effort blocked inside the box. After a corner kick came to Bennett inside the oppositions box he hit an effort wide of the goal, with Spurs in full control of the game. In the Spurs box the impressive Marqes Muir cut out a promising Enfield pass, before Mundle had an effort blocked from a good area at the other side of the pitch. For the start of the second half Spurs made three changes, with Brooklyn Lyons-Foster, Jamie Bowden and Michael Craig coming on for Dilan Markanday, Matthew Craig and Yago Santiago. Lo-Tutala saved an effort from Sam Youngs, just before Spurs made it 4-0. After Romaine Mundle’s cross from the right ended up falling kindly for J’Neil Bennett inside the Enfield box the Spurs player finished confidently to get his second goal of the game, 4-0.

J’Neil Bennett hit the ball across the face of the Enfield goal from a wide position before Lo-Tutala saved Percy Kiangebeni’s header at the other end of the pitch. After Bowden received Lyons-Foster’s pass the Republic of Ireland youth international had an effort on goal blocked, and then at other side of the pitch Lo-Tutala saved Manny Maja’s effort from distance. Kion Etete had an effort saved from close range by the Enfield goalkeeper, before Michael Craig had an effort gathered by the goalkeeper. Spurs made some more changes shortly afterwards as Roshaun Mathurin, Joshua Oluwayemi, Jez Davies, Dante Cassanova, Jeremy Kyezu and Khalon Haysman came on for Thimothée Lo-Tutala, Marcel Lavinier, Jordan Hackett, Marqes Muir, Romaine Mundle and J’Neil Bennett. Oluwayemi came on to make a good save from Enfield’s triallist centre-forward from a tight angle, before Lyons-Foster hit an effort across the face of the Enfield goal. Etete hit an effort from range just before Oluwayemi saved well from Matt Walsh’s effort, and substitute Jeremy Kyezu stopped a promising Enfield attack, in what was the final piece of action from the match.

Player reviews:

  • Thimothée Lo-Tutala: The Paris born goalkeeper didn’t have an awful lot to do during his time on the pitch, particularly during the first half. However, during the second half Lo-Tutala made a small number of saves.
  • Marcel Lavinier: The right-back went on some good forward runs down the right flank and he linked up well with Romaine Mundle during his time on the pitch. 
  • Marqes Muir: The RCB was very solid during his time on the pitch. Muir blocked a good Enfield effort well and also cut out a promising attack from the home side during the first half.
  • Jubril Okedina: The Spurs captain scored a goal and also defended well at LCB.
  • Jordan Hackett: The young left-back supported J’Neil Bennett at times although he mainly stayed deep to defend.
  • Matthew Craig: The energetic central midfielder covered a lot of ground in the central areas of the pitch, before being replaced by his brother Michael for the second half.
  • Yago Santiago: Playing as a number eight Yago Santiago helped to link the play well, and he also made some good forward runs off the ball.
  • Romaine Mundle: The 18 year old right winger went on some good forward bursts out wide, and he tried his luck with a couple of efforts on the Enfield goal.
  • Dilan Markanday: The very skilful CAM looked very potent during the first half with his fine runs with the ball, and he also registered an assist and created an great chance for Kion Etete early on in the game.
  • J’Neil Bennett: My man of the match, see below.
  • Kion Etete: The centre-forward set up J’Neil Bennett’s second goal of the game, scored a well taken goal himself and also was unlucky not to score more on the day. I thought that Etete also linked the play well against Enfield as well as working hard off the ball.
  • Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: Playing as the deepest midfielder Brooklyn Lyons-Foster patrolled the midfield well and also supported Jamie Bowden when going forward at times as well.
  • Jamie Bowden: Constantly looking to get on the ball, classy midfielder Jamie Bowden tried to influence the game positively every time that he got on the ball against Enfield. He moved well with the ball and without it, and showed some nice skill during his time on the pitch.
  • Michael Craig: Hardworking and always looking to get on the ball, Michael Craig played out of position as a CAM in the second half, where I thought that he did well.
  • Joshua Oluwayemi: The 20 year old goalkeeper made two strong stops after coming on late on in the second half.
  • Dante Cassanova: The versatile player did well at right-back when coming on for the latter stages of the second half.
  • Jeremy Kyezu: The left-back helped to stop a promising late Enfield attack.
  • Roshaun Mathurin: Playing out on the left wing after replacing J’Neil Bennett, I thought that Mathurin was unlucky as Spurs didn’t seem too focus much on playing down the left hand side of the pitch during the latter stages of the match.
  • Jez Davies: The former Leyton Orient Academy player replaced Marqes Muir for the latter part of the match at RCB.
  • Khalon Haysman: The midfielder came on late in the game and looked good on the ball during his time on the pitch. 

My man of the match: J’Neil Bennett. Following on from his great performance against Ramsgate on Saturday, winger J’Neil Bennett (19) caused so many problems for the Enfield defence on Tuesday with his unpredictable play. Bennett took both of his goals (particularly the first one) really well and his driving forward runs and skill on the ball were very good indeed. He was very unlucky not to score a hat-trick on the day.

Spurs Under 23’s 6-0 Ramsgate FC: (match report)

Spurs’ Under 23 side played their first friendly of pre-season on Saturday afternoon, when Wayne Burnett’s side took on non-League side Ramsgate FC at the WW Martin Community Stadium. Spurs were very impressive against the non-League side and during the first half their high intensity game proved far too much for Ramsgate. During the second half the home side grew into the game more, but then Spurs added two further goals to win the game 6-0 on the day. Spurs started the game with Joshua Oluwayemi in goal. A back four consisting of Marcel Lavinier, Marqes Muir, Jubril Okedina and Jordan Hackett lined up in front of him. Twins Matthew Craig and Michael Craig started the game in central midfield, whilst Yago Santiago and J’Neil Bennett started out on the flanks, either side of CAM Dilan Markanday. Kion Etete led the line for Spurs. Unfortunately I couldn’t manage to get a team-sheet today at the match, so therefore I don’t know the names of the Ramsgate players, and can only refer to them by their number. I do apologise about this. Ramsgate got the game underway on a very hot summers day in Kent, but it was Spurs who started the match the better of the two teams. Spurs were up for the game right from the start, and they took the lead very early on in the match through the skilful Dilan Markanday. The 19 year old latched onto Matthew Craig’s forward pass before travelling with the ball towards the edge of the Ramsgate box, and then hitting an unstoppable low effort past the Ramsgate goalkeeper and into the bottom right hand corner of the goal, 1-0.

Ramsgate’s number five ended up hitting the ball against Markanday on the edge of the Ramsgate box soon after the game got back underway. However, Markanday’s first touch let him down, and the Ramsgate goalkeeper was able to gather the ball. Kion Etete managed to win the ball off of Ramsgate’s number six soon afterwards after pressing him well, before then threading a nice pass to J’Neil Bennett inside the Ramsgate box. Bennett showed good composure on the ball before just tucking it low past the goalkeeper and into the back of the net, 2-0. A lovely lofted through-ball from Spurs captain Jubril Okedina managed to pick out the run of Markanday, who ran forward into the Ramsgate box, before hitting an effort against the crossbar. Yago Santiago was quickest to the rebound, but his following effort was saved by the goalkeeper. After Michael Craig made a forceful challenge on number 18 to win the ball, he passed the ball to J’Neil Bennett, who then forced a save out of the goalkeeper. A really well worked move ended in Spurs scoring their third goal of the game, not long afterwards. Bennett’s pass down the left to Etete saw the Spurs striker advance into the oppositions box, before then threading a pass across to Markanday in the centre of the box, and his low effort went into the back of the net, 3-0. Soon after Ramsgate got the game back underway J’Neil received the ball on the left flank. He then cut inside onto his right foot and let fly, and his wonderful effort hit the crossbar. Roshaun Mathurin came on to replace Kion Etete, after he had picked up an injury. Yago Santiago went up front, whilst Mathurin occupied the right flank.

After Markanday had played a quick one-two with Santiago in the Ramsgate box, he had a shot blocked. And then a couple of moments later the player from Barnet had an effort saved from inside the Ramsgate box. Dilan Markanday was really dictating the game from the CAM role, and he won a free-kick right on the edge of the Ramsgate box after being fouled followed a wonderful turn from the Spurs man. J’Neil Bennett’s following curling effort was saved by the Ramsgate goalkeeper. After Bennett had received Markanday’s pass down the left he traveled into the Ramsgate box, before squaring the ball to Markanday, but his flicked effort on goal was blocked by a Ramsgate defender. The excellent Dilan Markanday got a first half hat-trick after latching onto the Ramsgate goalkeepers pass out from his own box, and he then slotted the ball beyond him and into the back of the net to make it 4-0 before half-time. Spurs got the second half underway and an early move from Spurs saw Bennett pass the ball to Mathurin down the right side of the Ramsgate box, but his resulting effort on goal was saved. Spurs made a number of changes shortly afterwards as Thimothée Lo-Tutala, Jeremy Kyezu, Dante Cassanova and Khalon Haysman came on to replace Joshua Oluwayemi, Jordan Hackett, J’Neil Bennett and Michael Craig. Just before he had been replaced J’Neil Bennett had won a free-kick on the edge of the Ramsgate box, but Dilan Markanday’s resulting effort went over the crossbar. After playing a one-two with Haysman down the right flank Marcel Lavinier crossed the ball into the Ramsgate box. Santiago received the ball and trapped it under his feet, before then having a shot blocked by Ramsgate’s number two.

Ramsgate’s impressive number ten tried to catch Lo-Tutala off his line with an effort from distance, but the Spurs goalkeeper saved his effort. Markanday managed to latch onto a long ball over the top inside the Ramsgate box, but his resulting low effort was saved by the goalkeeper. However, Markanday was again involved in play in the final third moments later. This time he went into the Ramsgate box before squaring the ball for Haysman. His initial effort was blocked by a defender, but his second effort saw him curl the ball into the top right hand corner of the goal, to make it 5-0 to Spurs. Jez Davies came on to replace Matthew Craig in central midfield before Lavinier played a long ball up to Haysman, who ended up rounding the Ramsgate goalkeeper and coming very close to finding the back of the net with his effort, which went just wide of the goal. Lo-Tutala was alert to tip behind a powerfully struck effort from distance from Ramsgate’s number four. J’Neil Bennett then came back on (the game had rolling substitutions) to replace Dilan Markanday, and he made an instant impact. After winning the ball off of Ramsgate’s number six on the edge of their box, Bennett finished emphatically inside the bottom left hand corner of the goal, 6-0. Matthew Craig came on to replace Marcel Lavinier for the final minutes of the game. The excellent J’Neil Bennett went on an excellent surging forward run past a couple of Ramsgate players and into the Ramsgate box, before unfortunately giving away a foul. 

Ramsgate’s number ten came very close to lobbing the ball over Lo-Tutala towards the end of the game, before Ramsgate’s number two blocked Bennett’s effort at the other end of the pitch. Spurs’ Under 23 side play Enfield Town in their next pre-season friendly, which is on Tuesday.

Player reviews:

  • Joshua Oluwayemi: The 20 year old goalkeeper didn’t actually have a save to make today, as during the first half Ramsgate didn’t actually have a shot on goal. Oluwayemi only played the first half of the match. 
  • Marcel Lavinier: Playing at right-back Marcel Lavinier often stayed deep, although he did support the attack on occasions. The former Chelsea player put in a solid defensive performance. 
  • Marqes Muir: RCB Marqes Muir brought the ball out from the back well along with Jubril Okedina, but he wasn’t tested an awful lot at centre-half on the day. But what he did do he did well.
  • Jubril Okedina: The Spurs captain wasn’t tested too much today, like Marqes Muir, but he was solid in defence and got in front of the forward players well in situations. Okedina also made some fine long forward passes.
  • Jordan Hackett: Like Marcel Lavinier on the opposite flank, second year scholar Jordan Hackett (17) often stayed deep. He defended well and made some good passes down the left flank. 
  • Matthew Craig: Forceful in the challenge, Matthew Craig patrolled the midfield alongside his twin brother well. Matthew was authoritative in the central areas of the pitch and he also assisted Dilan Markanday’s opening goal of the game. This was a good performance from the hardworking midfielder, who also filled in at RCB during the latter stages of the second half.
  • Michael Craig: Playing as a number eight, Michael Craig put in a strong performance in central midfield and he showed good strength both on and off the ball during his time on the pitch.
  • Yago Santiago: Former Celta Vigo Academy player Yago Santiago started the game out on the right wing. Santiago showed good feet and was involved in some good play during his time on the pitch. Santiago later played at centre-forward, and I was impressed with his movement off the ball at times when playing in that position.
  • Dilan Markanday: My man of the match, see below.
  • J’Neil Bennett: The 19 year old was excellent out on the left flank throughout his time on the pitch. Bennett showed great skill and pace, and he was constantly looking to take the Ramsgate players on. Some of his forward runs were brilliant, especially when he came inside from the left flank onto his right foot. Both of his goals were well taken.
  • Kion Etete: The centre-forward was only on the pitch for 23 minutes, when he was forced off because of injury. Etete linked the play well up front and even dropped deep on occasions, and the 19 year old was directly involved in two goals (two assists). This was a good performance from Kion, even though he wasn’t on the pitch for too long. Hopefully he’ll be back playing again soon.
  • Roshaun Mathurin: Replacing the injured Kion Etete and then going out to play out on the right flank, skilful winger Roshaun Mathurin showed good skill on the ball in the wide positions, and his movement off the ball was also good.
  • Thimothée Lo-Tutala: The second half substitute made one good save late on in the game.
  • Jeremy Kyezu: The 18 year old defender came on during the second half, and during his time on the pitch he played at left-back. He did well in the second half.
  • Dante Cassanova: The midfielder played in central midfield and he won the ball well in the central areas of the pitch. 
  • Khalon Haysman: The second half substitute made a really good impact on the game. Haysman (17) moved the ball around well from midfield, scored a well taken goal and also came close to scoring a second after rounding the Ramsgate goalkeeper and only just misplacing his effort.
  • Jez Davies: Former Leyton Orient Academy player Jez Davies came off the bench during the second half and made some nice passes and was also nice involved in the game.

My man of the match: Dilan Markanday. I lost count of the amount of chances that the highly skilful CAM was involved in today. The 19 year old really controlled the game at times, and with his excellent balance and ability on the ball he really caused a lot of problems for the Ramsgate defence. Scoring a well deserved hat-trick, Markanday took all three of his goals well, but the wonderful skill which would have surely ended in him scoring his fourth goal of the game but for a foul from a Ramsgate player, would have been the best of the match. It’s also worth noting that he worked really hard off the ball as well. Dilan was involved in a lot of what was great about Spurs’ performance today. I’m hoping that he will get a chance to play for the first team this pre-season. 

Spurs Under 23’s 1-6 Manchester City: (match report)

In Spurs’ Under 23’s final competitive game of the 2020/21 season, Wayne Burnett’s side came up against the champions Manchester City, for the second time in a week. However, unfortunately Spurs lost 6-1, which was a real shame as Spurs have had a very good season at this level and finish in third place in Division One of the Premier League 2. Wayne Burnett’s side started with Thimothee Lo-Tutala in goal (his competitive Under 23 debut), whilst a back four consisting of Marcel Lavinier, Brooklyn Lyons-Foster, Tobi Omole and Dennis Cirkin, started in defence. Nile John and captain Jamie Bowden were in central midfield, whilst Elliot Thorpe and Dilan Markanday started out wide, either side of CAM Alfie Devine (Devine did often play out on the left flank). Dane Scarlett started up front for Spurs, in the absence of Kion Etete and Rodel Richards. Spurs got the game underway on a nice evening at Hotspur Way, and defender Brooklyn Lyons-Foster did well to intercept Cole Palmer’s early and promising forward pass towards Liam Delap. Not long afterwards and at the other end of the pitch, Manchester City goalkeeper James Trafford’s attempted pass to Tommy Doyle was intercepted by Jamie Bowden inside the visitors box. However, Bowden’s low side-footed effort was saved by the foot of James Trafford, in what was a glorious early chance for Spurs. Marcel Lavinier did well to block Ben Knight’s effort, before Tobi Omole gave the ball to Ben Knight on the edge of the Spurs box, but his goal attempt went wide. After receiving the ball out on the right flank, Marcel Lavinier went forward with it at some pace, he evaded the challenge of Romeo Lavia well, before passing the ball to Devine. The Warrington born midfielder cleverly worked his way into the Manchester City box before curling his effort wide of the Spurs goal.

After Bowden gave the ball away to Cole Palmer, the Manchester City winger passed the ball to Tommy Doyle on the edge of the Spurs box, but Omole did well to block his effort. Lavinier then blocked Liam Delap’s effort on goal, before Thimothee Lo-Tutala saved Cole Palmer’s attempt. At the other end of the pitch Alfie Devine had an effort deflected behind for a corner kick, and from that corner kick which was taken by Dilan Markanday, Brooklyn Lyons-Foster nodded the ball over the bar. After Liam Delap latched onto Cole Palmer’s pass, the skilful centre-forward ran into the Spurs penalty area, before calmly slotting the ball past Lo-Tutala to make it 1-0 to Manchester City. A matter of minutes later Liam Delap received the ball into his feet before running down the left side of the Spurs box and holding off Lyons-Foster, before curling the ball into the far corner of Lo-Tutala’s goal, 0-2. And Manchester City’s excellent start to the game got even better in the 28th minute, after Cole Palmer received the ball on the edge of the Spurs box before calmly curling the ball in off the right hand post of the goal and into the net, 0-3. Manchester City continued to play their exciting brand of attacking football, and a good block from Lyons-Foster was needed to stop James McAtee’s effort on goal, before Tobi Omole did really well to make a fine challenge on Cole Palmer in the Spurs box, to prevent a certain goal for the away team. Dane Scarlett ambitiously attempted to catch out Trafford from distance, but his effort went wide of the Manchester City goal.

A misplaced pass went straight to Elliot Thorpe inside the Manchester City box, but his effort was saved well by the feet of James Trafford. After receiving Lyons-Foster’s fine long pass out on the right flank, Dilan Markanday came inside and into the visitors box, before hitting the ball across the face of their goal, and then after the play was recycled Elliot Thorpe hit an effort wide of the goal. Tobi Omole received a yellow card from the referee for a foul on James McAtee, in what was the last piece of action from the first half. Manchester City got the game restarted after the break and it was the perfect start to the second half for them. After Cole Palmer  finished well past Lo-Tutala from close range, after latching onto Tobi Omole’s pass out from defence, 0-4. A couple of moments later Lo-Tutala saved well low down, to prevent Ben Knight’s effort on goal, before Markanday did well to come forward with the ball. He then played a good pass into Alfie Devine down the left side of the Manchester City box, but James Trafford turned behind his effort, before Omole headed over Markanday’s resulting corner kick. Tobi Omole then did well to clear Ben Knight’s cross, before Liam Delap headed over another cross from the same player a couple of moments later. Lyons-Foster cleared away the ball from James McAtee’s cross, but Spurs could do nothing to prevent Manchester City’s fifth goal of the game shortly afterwards. After the visitors broke forward at pace through Cole Palmer, the winger then threaded the ball into the feet of Delap, who then continued into the Spurs box before firing the ball past Lo-Tutala and into the back of the net, despite the Spurs goalkeeper managing to get a hand on the ball, 0-5.

Second year scholar Romaine Mundle came on to replace Elliot Thorpe out on the right flank, in what was Spurs’ first change of the game. After receiving Dilan Markanday’s well weighted through-ball pass, Dane Scarlett continued into the Manchester City box before confidently sending the ball past James Trafford and into the back of the Manchester City goal, 1-5. After receiving teammate Cole Palmer’s pass down the right side of the Spurs box, Liam Delap’s fierce strike went just wide of the Spurs goal. Nile John blocked Cole Palmer’s shot, before Tommy Doyle fired an effort over Lo-Tutala’s goal, after Tobi Omole had blocked Cole Palmer’s effort behind for a corner kick. J’Neil Bennett came on to replace Dane Scarlett up front, for Wayne Burnett’s second change of the game. The very talented Cole Palmer hit an effort wide before Dilan Markanday whipped over a free-kick in a decent position, at the other end of the pitch. J’Neil Bennett did well to block Cole Palmer’s shot inside the Spurs box, before Cirkin had an effort on goal blocked at the opposite end of the pitch. Rafferty Pedder came on to replace Jamie Bowden in midfield late on in the game, before Ben Knight hit the ball over from the left side of the Spurs penalty area. After travelling forward towards the Spurs box, Manchester City player Romeo Lavia managed to find the bottom left hand corner of Lo-Tutala’s goal with a fine effort, after receiving Ben Knight’s pass, 1-6. After playing a good one-two with Markanday on the edge of the Manchester City box, Rafferty Pedder forced a save out of James Trafford. 

After receiving the ball J’Neil Bennett hit the ball over James Trafford’s goal, before Lo-Tutala saved Tommy Doyle’s effort at the other end of the pitch, before the referee blew his whistle for full-time. It would be very easy to say that Spurs weren’t good, or focus on what they could have done to stop Manchester City scoring six goals, but sometimes you’ve just got to appreciate the brilliance of the opposition, and Manchester City were brilliant throughout yesterday’s game. It’s been a really good season for Spurs at Under 23 level, and that is a credit to the players and the coaches, who should all be very proud of helping the team to achieve their highest ever finish in the Premier League 2.

Player reviews: 

  • Thimothee Lo-Tutala: On his competitive Spurs Under 23 debut, goalkeeper Thimothee Lo-Tutala made a decent number of saves to stop Manchester City from scoring more goals than they did. He was visibly frustrated that he unfortunately couldn’t keep out Romeo Lavia’s late goal, but any young goalkeeper would have found it difficult against Manchester City in Friday evenings game.
  • Marcel Lavinier: I was impressed with some of the forward runs that Lavinier made from deep, and also some of his blocks inside the Spurs box. Yesterday’s  competitive appearance was number 22 of the seasons for Lavinier, the most of any Spurs Under 23 player during the 2020/21 season.
  • Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: Despite the fact that Spurs defence conceded six goals to Manchester City, I don’t think that the scoreline tells the story of how Lyons-Foster played at RCB. The defender who once again supported the attack well after making runs from deep, did make some good and important defensive contributions. The versatile 20 year old also kept some good defensive positioning, and his distribution out from defence was good, in my opinion.
  • Tobi Omole: Obviously Tobi Omole would have been disappointed to have unfortunately given the ball to Cole Palmer, who as a result scored his second  goal of the game. However, apart from that and some of his other passing out from defence, Omole impressed by making some really good defensive interventions during the game. And the 21 year old former Arsenal player has been consistently very good throughout the 2020/21 season, ever since he joined the club last autumn. 
  • Dennis Cirkin: Going forward I thought that the left-back made some powerful and purposeful runs from deep, showing good skill on the ball.
  • Nile John: Playing as the deepest of the two central midfielders, second year scholar Nile John showed some fine skill on the ball in the middle of the pitch.
  • Jamie Bowden: The Republic of Ireland youth international played the game as a number eight, and the Spurs captain got forward more than he would on other occasions this season, during his 77 minutes on the pitch. It has been really good to see him get a really good run of games this season, after missing some time with injury.
  • Elliot Thorpe: Showing some good skill on the ball out on the right flank and going on some good forward runs, Thorpe also worked well and moved well off the ball, despite playing out of position. He came very close to scoring a goal during the first half, only to be denied by a fine save from James Trafford.
  • Alfie Devine: Despite wearing the number ten shirt, Alfie Devine’s starting position was often out on the left flank, where I thought that he had a solid game. And during the first half he caused some problems for the Manchester City defence. He also worked tirelessly off the ball.
  • Dilan Markanday: My man of the match, see below.
  • Dane Scarlett: The scorer of our only goal of the match, centre-forward Dane Scarlett worked really hard off the ball, and he showed good composure to score from his only really chance of the game.
  • Romaine Mundle: The second half substitute replaced Elliot Thorpe out on the the right flank for the final 62 minutes of the game.
  • J’Neil Bennett: Showing some good skill on the ball after replacing Dane Scarlett up front during some of the second half, J’Neil Bennett looked good going forward during part of his time on the pitch.
  • Rafferty Pedder: The energetic late substitute played a clever one-two with Dilan Markanday, before forcing a save out of James Trafford.

My man of the match: Dilan Markanday was superb against Manchester City on Friday, in my opinion. Although his starting number was 11, the 19 year old often started from a central position, and the player who threaded a nice forward pass into Dane Scarlett, to set the centre- forward up for his goal (fourth assist of the season), was really creative for Spurs throughout yesterday’s match. Drifting into good advanced positions and also going on some really clever and skilful forward runs, I thought that Markanday created more chances than any other Spurs player on the pitch. And the consistent and hardworking player also was good from set-pieces throughout the game, and also very difficult to get the ball off.

Spurs: Lo-Tutala, Lavinier, Cirkin, John, Lyons-Foster, Omole, Thorpe (Mundle 58), Bowden (c) (Pedder 77), Scarlett (Bennett 65), Devine, Markanday. Substitutes (not used): Kurylowicz, Paskotsi.

Manchester City: Trafford, Gomes, Sandler, Burns, Bernarbe (Robinson 65), Lavia, Palmer, Doyle (c), Delap, McAtee (Smith 86), Knight (Breckin 86). Substitute (not used): Slicker.

Spurs under 23’s 1-4 Manchester City: (match report)

In their penultimate Premier League 2 game of the season, Wayne Burnett’s Spurs under 23 side travelled to Manchester City’s Academy stadium on Friday, to face the Premier League Division One champions. Spurs were beaten 4-1 by the champions, but despite the scoreline I thought that Spurs played well, particularly during the second half and against such a good team. Defender Tobi Omole had a goal disallowed when the score was 3-1, and if that had been allowed then Spurs could have got something out of the game. Spurs lined up in a 4-2-3-1 formation as Kacper Kurylowicz started in goal for the first time in a competitive game at this level. A back four consisting of Marcel Lavinier, Brooklyn Lyons-Foster, Tobi Omole and Dennis Cirkin started in front of him. Elliot Thorpe and captain Jamie Bowden started in central midfield, while J’Neil Bennett and Alfie Devine started out on the flanks, either side of CAM Dilan Markanday. Rodel Richards started up front for Spurs. Spurs got the game underway and an important early interception from Tobi Omole stopped James McAtee’s through-ball from reaching Liam Delap, who would have been through on goal. A Dilan Markanday free-kick from the left flank into the Manchester City box was challenged by Rodel Richards and Philippe Sandler, and the Man City defender managed to head the ball behind for a corner kick. Dennis Cirkin tried his luck from range but his effort went wide, after eventually receiving the ball from Alfie Devine’s corner kick. After Jamie Bowden conceded a free kick, Tommy Doyle stepped up to take it for the home side. The talented midfielders powerful curling effort from long range beat Kurylowicz at his near post, and nestled into his goal, 0-1.

Kurylowicz gathered Ben Knight’s cross from the right, before at the other end of the pitch Alfie Devine received J’Neil Bennett’s pass down the right flank, before pulling the ball back for Markanday inside the oppositions box. However, Markanday’s effort was deflected off of Finley Burns and over for a corner kick. Brooklyn Lyons-Foster had a low effort from distance go wide, before Elliot Thorpe had an effort blocked from range. After Liam Delap had received James McAtee’s pass inside the Spurs box he tried his luck on goal, but his powerful effort was well blocked by Lyons-Foster. Marcel Lavinier then blocked Cole Palmer’s effort as Manchester City continued to see a lot of the ball. After Claudio Gomes passed the ball to Cole Palmer down the right side of the Spurs box, Palmer attempted to score but Kurlyowicz saved well at his near post. Kurylowicz then saved Cole Palmer’s effort from the edge of the Spurs box. At the other end of the pitch Markanday saw his free-kick from the right flank gathered by James Trafford. After James McAtee had passed the ball to Ben Knight down the left side of the Spurs box, Knight powerfully hit the ball past Kurylowicz and into the top right corner of his goal to finish off a great move, 0-2. James Trafford punched clear a free-kick from Markanday before Kurylowicz did well to come out of his goal and get to the ball before Liam Delap could get to it inside the Spurs box, in what was the final piece of action from the first half. The champions got the game back underway for the second half and there was a change, as Kion Etete came on to replace Rodel Richards up front. After Liam Delap received James McAtee’s pass he skilfully worked his way into the Spurs box before getting past Omole and forcing a save out of Kurylowicz low down.

Philippe Sandler curled just wide of the goal from inside the Spurs box, before Etete managed to win the ball off of Claudio Gomes on the edge of the Spurs box, he gave the ball to Markanday, who then gave the ball to Bennett on the edge of the box, but his effort was pushed away by James Trafford. After receiving the ball Elliot Thorpe went on a good surging run through the middle before attempting to beat James Trafford from the edge of the Manchester City box, but his low effort went narrowly wide of the goal. Omole blocked Cole Palmer’s shot from inside the Spurs box, before Jamie Bowden received a yellow card. After coming inside from the right flank James McAtee saw his effort on goal go just wide. And shortly afterwards a great move from the home side resulted in Cole Palmer passing the ball to James McAtee on the left, and he then passed it to Claudio Gomes down the left side of the Spurs box and he then squared the ball for Liam Delap to tap home, 0-3. However, Spurs responded well, and Lyons-Forced a good reaction save from a header from Trafford, after meeting Markanday’s corner kick. James Trafford then managed to turn behind Tobi Omole’s header. Spurs managed to pull a goal back from the following corner kick, as Lyons-Foster once again met Markanday’s ball into the box, and his glancing header was headed in off the bar by a Manchester City player, 1-3. James Trafford saved Dilan Markanday’s shot on goal, before Etete forced a save from the goalkeeper, from a header, after meeting J’Neil Bennett’s cross.

The alert Elliot Thorpe did well to intercept Liam Delap’s pass inside the Spurs penalty area, before Jamie Bowden blocked the same players shot inside the box moments later. Cole Palmer came very close to scoring with an effort from distance, before Rafferty Pedder came on to replace Elliot Thorpe in midfield. After getting on the ball just outside of the Manchester City box, Kion Etete gave the ball to J’Neil Bennett, whose effort was turned behind by Trafford. Spurs then had a goal disallowed after Etete was adjudged by the referee to have fouled James Trafford, just before Tobi Omole scored. After going on a good forward run Bowden saw his effort on goal go over the bar, before he received J’Neil Bennett’s pass inside the Manchester City box not long afterwards. Bowden chipped the ball forward for Dilan Markanday, who skilfully worked his way past James Trafford, but then lost his balance and shot wide of the goal. After meeting Jamie Bowden’s corner kick, Dennis Cirkin had a header blocked, before Manchester City scored their fourth goal of the game. James McAtee latched onto Cole Palmer’s pass before running into the Spurs box and calmly curling the ball past Kacper Kurylowicz and into the left corner of the goal, 1-4. That was to be the last action of the game.

Player reviews:

  • Kacper Kurylowicz: Making his first ever competitive start at this level, goalkeeper Kacper Kurylowicz had a good game, I thought. Tommy Doyle’s opening free-kick goal was an excellent one, and I don’t think that you could criticise him for not keeping that out. In addition the 19 year old made some good saves, including a fine one at his near post. He distribution was also good throughout the game.
  • Marcel Lavinier: The right-back liked to get forward, but he also did well in defence. And the former Chelsea player came inside quite often to help out the two Spurs central defenders.
  • Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: After making an impressive early block, Lyons-Foster impressed with his positioning in defence. He brought the ball out well from the back along with Tobi Omole, and he liked to step forward out of the defence and join his teammates when they went forward on occasions. The 20 year old defender also scored a good headed goal, his second goal of the season.
  • Tobi Omole: Starting the game at LCB, defender Tobi Omole like Lyons-Foster did all that he could possibly do to try and stop the talented Manchester City forwards from scoring. Omole has had a very good season for Spurs.
  • Dennis Cirkin: I thought that this was a solid defensive performance front the 19 year old left-back, and he also went on some good forward runs down the left.
  • Elliot Thorpe: My man of the match, see below.
  • Jamie Bowden: The Spurs captain showed good skill on the ball and tried to influence the game with his impressive passing. Bowden was involved in some nice pieces of play going forward for Spurs, and the 19 year old went one particularly impressive forward run during the second half, as well as creating a good opportunity for Dilan Markanday to score from.
  • J’Neil Bennett: The winger tried on a good number of occasions to test Manchester City goalkeeper James Trafford. And J’Neil Bennett tried to take on the opposing teams defenders when he had the ball out on the right flank.
  • Dilan Markanday: Often drifting out to the left flank, Dilan Markanday impressed with his set-pieces (he assisted Brooklyn Lyons-Foster’s goal). Markanday also made some clever runs off the ball, and he worked very hard off it as well.
  • Alfie Devine: Although he was wearing the number 11 shirt, midfielder Alfie Devine had more of a free role, and he would often come into more central positions to try and influence the game.
  • Rodel Richards: The forward pressed the Manchester City goalkeeper and defence really well during his time on the pitch, but he didn’t have great service into his feet, and was therefore unable to make much of an impact on the game during the first half.
  • Kion Etete: The second half substitute allowed Spurs to whip more crosses into the Spurs box, because of Kion’s height. He asked questions of the Manchester City defenders.
  • Rafferty Pedder: The late substitute brought plenty of energy to the game from midfield, and he was always looking to receive the ball in good areas of the pitch.

My man of the match: Elliot Thorpe. A lot of Spurs players played well on Friday evening, and I could have given this man of the match award to many players. But playing as the deepest midfielder, Elliot Thorpe made a good impression on the game from that position, as he came forward from deep to try and create, and was in my opinion our most influential player going forward. The 20 year old looked to go on surging forward runs from deep when receiving the ball into his feet, and he tried to take players on and look to create chances. His work rate off the ball was also impressive, along with his powerful forward running. The Wales youth international also came very close to scoring with a low effort from distance.

Manchester City: Trafford, Gomes, Sandler, Burns, Egan-Riley, Lavia (Robertson 74), Palmer, Doyle (c), Delap, McAtee, Knight (F Nmecha 67). Substitutes (not used): Slicker, Robinson, Gbadebo.

Spurs: Kurylowicz, Lavinier, Cirkin, Thorpe (Pedder 82), Lyons-Foster, Omole, Bennett, Bowden (c), Richards (Etete 46), Markanday, Devine. Substitutes (not used): Maguire, Paskotsi.

Spurs under 18’s 3-0 AFC Wimbledon: (match report)

Spurs’ under 18 side traveled to Wimbledon’s Plough Lane ground on Wednesday evening, for a fourth round FA Youth Cup tie. Matt Taylor’s Spurs side were frustrated by AFC Wimbledon’s strong defence for large parts of the match, and while Wimbledon came really close to scoring in the first half of extra time, a strong showing from Spurs in extra time saw them score three (Jamie Donley scored two and Romaine Mundle got one) goals to set up a home tie against West Brom in the next round of the competition. Spurs’s starting team (4-2-3-1) saw captain Thimothee Lo-Tutala start in goal, while a back four consisting of Kallum Cesay, Matthew Craig, Marqes Muir and Jeremy Kyezu started in front of him. Michael Craig and Nile John teamed up in central midfield, while Roshaun Mathurin and Romaine Mundle started out on the flanks, either side of CAM Alfie Devine. Dane Scarlett started up front for Spurs. Wimbledon got the game underway and the first effort of the game came from the hosts, as Quaine Bartley’s shot across goal from down the right side of the Spurs box was comfortably gathered by Lo-Tutala. Kwaku Frimpong then saw his effort from range go wide of the Spurs goal as Wimbledon’s strong defence limited Spurs’ chances during the early parts of the game. After Michael Craig was shown a yellow card for a challenge Wimbledon’s Dylan Adjei-Hersey had an effort on goal deflected behind for a corner. The same players delivery from the following corner was headed just over by Isaac Ogundere, before Romaine Mundle’s low effort from distance at the other end of the pitch went wide.

After Devine passed the ball to Dane Scarlett inside the Wimbledon box, the Spurs strikers first time effort across goal was picked up by a Wimbledon who cleared the ball. This was a good spell in the game for Spurs and a couple of moments later and after receiving Mundle’s pass inside the Wimbledon box, Roshaun Mathurin had a shot saved by Matt Cox, before Scarlett’s attempted chipped effort of the Wimbledon goalkeeper from distance went over his crossbar. After Matthew Craig’s clearance of Obed Yeboah’s cross came to Adbi Ali, the Wimbledon players effort on the half volley sailed over Lo-Tutala’s goal, in what was the final piece of action from the first half. Spurs got the second half underway and after Thimothee Lo-Tutala punched clear Dylan Adjei-Hersey’s free-kick, Matthew Craig blocked Troy Chiabi’s effort. The Spurs players appeals for a penalty after the ball appeared to strike Abdi Ali’s hand inside the Spurs box were waived away by the referee, before Dylan Adjei-Hersey’s effort from range was palmed away by Lo-Tutala, but only as far as Troy Chiabi who slotted home, but his goal was ruled out for offside. Matthew Craig then blocked Kwaku Frimprong’s effort from distance, before Dane Scarlett was shown a yellow card. Matthew Craig made an important challenge on Troy Chiabi inside the Spurs box to get the ball away from him, before at the other end of the pitch Roshaun Mathurin came in from the right onto his left foot before forcing a save out of Matt Cox.

Matthew Craig blocked Adjei-Hersey’s effort before Spurs made two changes in quick succession, as Yago Santiago returned to action to replace Roshaun Mathurin, while Jamie Donley replaced Michael Craig as he took up the CAM role, with Devine dropping into central midfield. Devine was shown a yellow card for his reaction to a challenge on him from a Wimbledon player before Dane Scarlett nodded a header wide from inside the Wimbledon box. Adjei-Hersey hit his free-kick well over Lo-Tutala’s crossbar before Remi Onabanjo also hit an effort over, as the referee sounded his whistle for full-time of normal time shortly afterwards. Spurs made a change for the first half of extra time, as Jordan Hackett came on to replace Dane Scarlett. After the ball came to Alfie Devine on the edge of the Wimbledon box, the midfielders quickly taken effort was straight at Matt Cox who gathered the ball. Nile John then had an effort from range saved by the Wimbledon goalkeeper, before Ben Mason’s cross at the other end of the pitch came to Adjei-Hersey inside the Spurs box, and his headed effort was excellently tipped behind by Lo-Tutala to prevent Wimbledon from taking the lead. Dante Cassanova came on to replace Alfie Devine before Spurs took the lead in the 99th minute of the game through substitute Jamie Donley. Romaine Mundle’s fine first time cross into Donley just inside the Wimbledon box saw the centre-forward take a touch before firing the ball past Matt Cox and into the back of the net, to give Spurs the lead against the run of play, 1-0.

The second half of extra time saw John hit an effort wide from range before Lo-Tutala punched clear Isaac Olaniyan’s corner kick. After receiving Nile John’s pass the lively Yago Santiago showed great skill to twist and turn away from a couple of Wimbledon players inside the home teams box, before passing to Donley whose shot was blocked. Then a couple of moments later and after receiving another pass from John, Santiago squared the ball for Donley inside the Wimbledon box however, his effort went over the crossbar. Spurs were now in control of the game and after John curled an effort over the Wimbledon goal, Spurs doubled their lead through Romaine Mundle. Santiago’s pass to Donley resulted in the striker superbly picking out Mundle from out on the left down the right hand side of the Wimbledon box, and the second year scholar calmly finished past Matt Cox, 2-0. After running forward with the ball Santiago hit the ball over the Wimbledon crossbar, before Spurs scored their final goal of the game in the 121st minute of the match. A long ball forward was latched onto by Kallum Cesay who knocked the ball past the Wimbledon goalkeeper after he had came out of his box, Cesay then passed the ball to Donley who tapped the ball into the open goal, 3-0. The final score from Plough Lane – Spurs 3-0 AFC Wimbledon.

Player reviews: 

  • Thimothee Lo-Tutala: The Spurs captain and goalkeeper made one really great and important save in the first half of extra time when the score was 0-0, and that save from the 18 year old proved to be so important. The Paris born goalkeeper also commanded his box well throughout the match. 
  • Kallum Cesay: The right-back mostly stayed deep but he did get forward on occasions. Cesay did well to assist Jamie Donley for his second goal of the game.
  • Matthew Craig: The RCB blocked a number of shots and also kept good positioning I felt, in defensive areas. Craig made one really important challenge on Troy Chiabi inside the Spurs penalty area.
  • Marqes Muir: Calm and composed in defence, in my opinion Marqes Muir didn’t put a foot wrong as a left sided centre-half, as he put in a strong defensive performance.
  • Jeremy Kyezu: The left-back completed the whole of the match and like Kallum Cesay on the other side of the pitch, I thought that Kyezu often stayed deep. 
  • Michael Craig: Playing as a four alongside Nile John in the middle of the pitch, Michael Craig kept the ball moving in the central areas of the pitch.
  • Nile John: The exciting midfielder liked to take players on and he showed some really good skill on the ball during today’s match, and often looked to go on surging forward runs. It was a good performance from the player who has played up for the Spurs under 23 side lately.
  • Roshaun Mathurin: Starting out on the right flank, winger Roshaun Mathurin managed an effort on goal during his time on the pitch. Mathurin completed 69 minutes of the game.
  • Alfie Devine: In order to get on the ball more often CAM Alfie Devine had to drop deep to try and influence the game, and the former Wigan Athletic player made some nice forward passes, showed good skill as well as moving well off the ball during his time on the pitch. 
  • Romaine Mundle: A player who I felt got more involved in the game as it went on, winger Romaine Mundle registered an assist and a goal against Wimbledon. Mundle did well to find Donley with his cross before later finishing well from inside the Wimbledon penalty area later on to effectively win the game for Spurs.
  • Dane Scarlett: The centre-forward worked really hard and moved well of the ball but didn’t get much luck against the solid and well disciplined Wimbledon defence. 
  • Yago Santiago: The former Celta Vigo player influenced the game well after coming on in the second half and playing out on the left wing. Santiago took on defenders well and showed some good bursts of pace and skill on the ball.
  • Jamie Donley: My man of the match, see below.
  • Jordan Hackett: The left-back came on in the first half of extra time.
  • Dante Cassanova: The late substitute filled in at right-back for the final stages of the game.

My man of the match: 16 year old under 16’s player Jamie Donley bolstered the Spurs attack after coming on in the second half of Wednesday’s match. The centre-forward who has represented both England and Northern Ireland at youth level really made a big difference to the match after being introduced in the 74th minute of time. Donley was excellent in extra time and a well taken goal to put Spurs ahead was followed by a fine pass to find Romaine Mundle inside the Wimbledon box for his goal, before later tapping home into an open goal to score his second of this game. Donley moved well off the ball too, and I was also impressed with his first touch. He reminded me a bit of Troy Parrott at the same age.

AFC Wimbledon: Cox, Mason, Onabanjo (Bangura 108), Frimpong, Ogundere (c), Sutcliffe, Adjei-Hersey, Ali (Lock 103), Yeboah (Sasu 55), Bartley (Olaniyan 66), Chiabi. Substitutes (not used): Lahan, Jones, Campbell.

Spurs: Lo-Tutala (c), Cesay, Kyezu, Michael Craig (Donley 74), Matthew Craig, Muir, Mathurin (Santiago 69), John, Scarlett (Hackett 91), Devine (Cassanova 99), Mundle. Substitutes (not used): Hayton, Dorrington.

Spurs under 23’s 3-0 Manchester United: (match report)

Spurs’ under 23 side defeated a talented Manchester United side in the PL2 at Hotspur Way on Friday afternoon, as Wayne Burnett’s side won 3-0 thanks to goals from Jamie Bowden, Marcel Lavinier and Kion Etete. Spurs lined up in a 4-2-3-1 formation with Josh Oluwayemi starting in goal, while a back four consisting of Marcel Lavinier, George Marsh, Tobi Omole and Dennis Cirkin sat in front of him. Michael Craig (first competitive start at this level) and captain Jamie Bowden teamed up in central midfield while Dilan Markanday and Romaine Mundle (first competitive start at this level) started out on the flanks, either side of CAM Nile John, with Kion Etete starting up front. Spurs got the game underway on a nice afternoon in Enfield, but it was the visitors who managed the first goal attempt of the game. Dillon Hoogerwerf curling an effort over Spurs goalkeeper Josh Oluwayemi’s crossbar early on in the match from the edge of the Spurs box, and the opening stages of the game were even, with both sides having similar amounts of possession. A long clearance forward from George Marsh ended up coming to Kion Etete on the edge of the Manchester United box, but his effort on goal was blocked by a defender. After conceding a free-kick on the edge of the Spurs box George Marsh was shown a yellow card, with Ethan Galbraith curling his resulting effort over. Joe Hugill then fired an effort wide of Oluwayemi’s goal after going on a good run down the left, while at the other end of the pitch Dilan Markanday delivered a nice lofted ball towards Jamie Bowden, who had made a good run in to the oppositions box, but a Manchester United defender managed to get to the ball in time to get it clear at the vital moment.

A cross from Lavinier from the right flank ended up coming to Mundle at the back post, inside the visitors penalty area. Mundle passed the ball to Bowden but his effort was straight at goalkeeper Matej Kovar, before Nile John gave the ball to Mundle down the left side of the Manchester United box. Romaine Mundle managed to get around Mark Helm inside the box, but the full-back ended up tripping him from behind, and the referee spotted this and ended up pointing to the spot. Jamie Bowden calmly and cleverly stepped up to just roll the ball down the middle of the goal as Kovar dived to his right, 1-0. Shortly after the game got started again a through ball to Hugill sent the Manchester United striker through on goal, but Oluwayemi came rushing out of his goal and he spread himself well to save Hugill’s effort inside the box. A good run from the skilful Dilan Markanday ended in him having a shot blocked from inside the Manchester United box. A surging run from Reece Devine ended in him entering the Spurs box before passing the ball to Hugill who shot wide of the goal. A corner kick then came to Ethan Galbraith on the edge of the Spurs box but his effort on target was headed clear off the line by George Marsh, who was in the right place at the right time. Nile John was shown a yellow card for a challenge on Shola Shoretire before Markanday made a good and important tackle on Reece Devine in the Spurs box. A couple of minutes later Jamie Bowden had a free-kick and later an effort on goal cleared before Tobi Omole cleared Mark Helm’s cross at the other end of the of the pitch. Josh Oluwayemi then saved Ethan Galbraith’s effort from range, in what was the final piece of action from the first half.

Manchester United got the second half underway and it was Manchester United who initially started the half quite well. Marcel Lavinier did well to block Mark Helm’s effort behind inside the Spurs box before Hugill had an effort blocked by Etete. A long ball forward from Omole was headed back towards Kovar by Alvaro Fernandez, but Kovar slipped and in the end the ball went narrowly wide of the goal. After winning the ball Lavinier passed the ball to Bowden who then threaded a pass in to Mundle down the left side of the oppositions penalty area, but the wingers resulting effort was powered into the side netting. A clearance from Marsh then ended up coming to Etete who skilfully got past Reece Devine before slipping a pass in to the feet of Markanday inside the Manchester United penalty area, but his first time side footed effort was straight at Kovar who gathered the ball comfortably. Hannibal Mejbri shot wide from distance before Spurs doubled their lead through Marcel Lavinier. After receiving Michael Craig’s pass on the edge of the Manchester United box Lavinier decided to try his luck on goal, and his powerful effort deflected off of Reece Devine before going past Kovar and nestling in the goal after the deflection had beaten the goalkeeper, 2-0. A melee followed following a challenge after the game got started again, and this resulted in Kion Etete and Dennis Cirkin being shown yellow cards, while Ethan Galbraith was shown a red card for his involvement. A pass from Dilan Markanday was cleared away by a Manchester United defender, but only as far as Kion Etete whose effort on the half volley on the edge of the oppositions box went narrowly wide of the goal.

After George Marsh had caught Hannibal Mejbri off the ball the midfielder was shown a straight red card, while Michael Craig did well a couple of minutes later to block Mark Helm’s effort inside the Spurs box after a good run from the right-back. Kallum Cesay came on to replace Jamie Bowden while J’Neil Bennett replaced Dilan Markanday, and an early effort from Bennett from the edge of the Manchester United box was well saved by Matej Kovar. After picking the ball up in the middle of the pitch Nile John went on a good and purposeful forward run through the middle, all the way to the edge of the away side’s box when the ball came off of Martin Svidersky before coming to Etete whose powerful effort flew past Kovar and in to the back of the goal to secure all three points for Spurs, 3-0. Marcel Lavinier blocked an effort from Joe Hugill before Rafferty Pedder came on to replace Romaine Mundle, as Josh Oluwayemi then gathered Charlie McCann’s delivery in to the Spurs box. J’Neil Bennett saw his effort from the right flank, across the face of the goal gathered by the Manchester United goalkeeper, before Tobi Omole headed over a Spurs corner kick. Substitute Noam Emeran’s ball in to the Spurs box was met by Joe Hugill, but his looping headed effort on goal was easily saved by Oluwayemi who a couple of minutes later thwarted Hannibal Mejbri’s late free-kick, in what was the final piece of action of the game. Spurs’ next Premier League 2 game is not until the 12th of April when they travel to Leicestershire to face Leicester City.

Player reviews:

  • Josh Oluwayemi: It was another fine performance from the goalkeeper following on from his good performance against Derby County earlier in the week. Oluwayemi made some good saves today including a very important one to deny Joe Hugill early on in the game from inside the Spurs box.
  • Marcel Lavinier: Solid and dependable at right-back, but also good at getting forward as he showed when he scored our second goal of the game in the second half, Marcel Lavinier did well up against Dillon Hoogerwerf down Manchester United’s left hand side. 
  • George Marsh: Playing at RCB George Marsh made an important headed clearance off the line in the first half as well as some other good clearances. However, he will have been disappointed to have received an avoidable straight red card late on in the second half.
  • Tobi Omole: It was another composed and impressive performance in central-defence from former Arsenal player Tobi Omole. The 21 year old stayed on his feet throughout the game against Manchester United and he put in another good defensive performance.
  • Dennis Cirkin: Strong both on and off the ball, 18 year old full-back Dennis Cirkin got up and down the left flank well and he was nice and involved in the game.
  • Michael Craig: Second year scholar Michael Craig (17) was in my opinion along with Dilan Markanday one of our best players on Friday. On his first competitive start at this level Craig looked assured in the middle of the park as he played as a four. He stayed close to Manchester United’s creative CAM Hannibal Mejbri on occasions and he did well at that, but he also used the ball intelligently (he got the assist for Lavinier’s goal) and he got stuck in too.
  • Jamie Bowden: The Spurs captain scored a nice penalty kick in the first half but he also had another solid game in the centre of the park, using the ball well and also moving well without it at his feet.
  • Dilan Markanday: My man of the match, see below.
  • Nile John: Playing as a CAM Nile John had some good moments in the game including a really good late surging run from deep which led to Kion Etete’s goal.
  • Romaine Mundle: Operating out on the left flank Romaine Mundle did some good things on his first competitive start at this level, including some nice skill to win our penalty during the first half. 
  • Kion Etete: Holding the ball up well and bringing others in to play, centre forward Kion Etete’s hard work off the ball was rewarded when he scored a well taken late goal. His tenth competitive goal involvement of the season at this level (eight goals and two assists).
  • Kallum Cesay: The late substitute made an important defensive intervention inside the Spurs box, late on in the game when the score was 2-0 to Spurs.
  • J’Neil Bennett: The substitute looked to make an impact on the game and he managed to have two attempts on goal.
  • Rafferty Pedder: N/A.

My man of the match: Playing out on the right flank Dilan Markanday (19) caused problems for Manchester United full-back Reece Devine, but he also tracked back tirelessly to help out full-back Marcel Lavinier defensively. Showing some really good skill down Manchester United’s left hand side, Markanday loved to cut inside from the right and use his left foot to try and make things happen. He was expressive going forward and could well have scored a goal during the second half, but his all round play including his defensive work made him for me our man of the match against Manchester United on Friday afternoon.