Spurs 2-0 Swansea: (my take on a good night in South Wales)

Spurs 2-0 Swansea: (my take on a good night in South Wales)

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The weather was abysmal as the rain came gushing down on to the muddy turf of Swansea’s liberty stadium. Fortunately for Pochettino’s side, they managed to overcome the adverse weather conditions to record a comprehensive 2-0 victory over the relegation stricken swans. As expected it was a game in which Pochettino’s energetic Spurs side dominated throughout, playing a slick passing game on the wet and slow pitch, Spurs pressed Swansea aggressively in the opening minutes. With star man Harry Kane dropped to the bench for this one, Fernando Llorente made the step up as he returned to the club he left to join us in in the summer. That gamble was to pay off, as after a positive start Spurs were awarded a free kick in a dangerous area. Christian Eriksen’s whipped ball was met by Llorente who glanced the ball beyond Fabianksi to give Spurs the lead. Spurs continued to dominate the home team for the remainder of the half, coming close to doubling their lead on numerous occasions. It had been a fine performance. However, the second half was quite different, Spurs weren’t as aggressive or creative as they had been in the first. Whilst they were still controlling the game they lacked a bit of punch to find that all important second goal. Swansea grew into the game and for a spell Spurs were under the cosh, Van Den Hoorn’s deflected header hit the upright, whilst substitute Luciano Narsingh also threatened Lloris’ goal. But Spurs defended well and once Harry Kane was introduced towards the latter stages of the game, you always got the impression that a second Spurs goal was on its way. And that was to be the case courtesy of a magnificent assist from Mr.Kane.

It was a pass of real quality and precision, Kane who was down the left flank curled a sumptuous pass to Dele Alli, who controlled it first time. Rushing through on goal his initial effort was saved by Fabianksi, but Alli gobbled up the rebound with an emphatic finish. It was a deeply satisfying result and performance from Pochettino’s men, they had braved the pouring rain and tricky conditions. To outclass Carlos Carvalhal’s men over the course of 90 minutes. It was a good team performance but for me the game changer was a young man by the name of Dele Alli. Alli has been in excellent form of late and yesterday’s game was no exception, the midfielder was on top form. Everything from his diagonal runs to his creativity on the ball impressed me. And yet again he was there to make the run which would seal the game. The 21 year old has now been involved in 18 of Spurs’ goals this season! COYS

 

Senior: goal scorers: Alli-8
Davies-2
Kane-24
Eriksen-6
Son-9
Sissoko-2
Llorente-2
Nkoudou-1
Aurier-1

Assists Eriksen-7
Trippier-7
Davies-3
Kane-4
Alli-10
Alderweireld-1
Sissoko-2
Son-6
Dier-1
Lamela-1
Llorente-1
Winks-1
Aurier-1

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A round up of recent Spurs games plus a youth update, and more:

A round up of recent Spurs games plus a youth update, and more:

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Apologies for my lack of writing over the festive period, a dislocated knee amongst other reasons has given me little time to sit down and write pieces on recent games. Now it is the new year, all will return to normal and I’ll be writing about Spurs everyday. However, as I’m quite behind in my articles on recent games I thought I’d combine all my pieces in to this one blog post. Starting on those two sparkling performances against both Burnley and Southampton, the record breaking Harry Kane was at the heart of both of those wins. But it was the togetherness and sheer dominance of Pochettino’s players collectively as a team, which saw them overcome Burnley and Southampton so emphatically. The fluid attacking play and the sharpness and incisive movement overwhelmed the opposition, it looked just like the Spurs of last season. There’s a lot of talk about Liverpool’s ‘fab four’ and the attacking prowess of the leaders Manchester City. But when our four attacking players are all on form they are just as unstoppable as shown in our previous two games, the victory over the saints saw us play some of our best football this season. Tomorrow Pochettino’s side travel to South Wales for a tricky away game with relegation stricken Swansea, buoyed by a rare win against Watford in their last game. Newly appointed manager Carlos Carvalhal has a monumental task on his hands to keep the swans in the league, they’ve scored the fewest goals this season. Have the poorest home form and lack quality and depth, on paper it’s an inviting game for Spurs and one which they would want to achieve maximum points.

In other news our under 18’s and 23’s both return to action in the coming week starting with our under 23’s who face Leicester in the PL2 on Wednesday night. I will be making the trip to Leicester for that one to report on the game. Meanwhile our under 18’s return to league action on the Saturday with a home game against Leicester at the training centre. In other youth related news, I was at the valley earlier today to watch Spurs loanee Connor Ogilvie in the Charlton v Gillingham game. The 21 year old full back only came on for the last 20 or so minutes of the game, at which point the gills were leading 2-0. Ogilvie put in a typically assured and composed performance at left back. Ogilvie got involved and was dominant in the air, he is getting plenty of game time at the league one club. Watching today’s game (which ended 2-1 to the visitors) it got me thinking. A club like Charlton for example who are on a poor run of form (seemingly lacking a bit of creativity) with a manager with a good youth policy in Karl Robinson, would surely be a good place to send a couple of our young academy starlets on loan to, over the January transfer window. Players like Marcus Edwards (so lacking in senior game time) the brilliant Keanan Bennetts who has been exceptional at wing back for our under 23’s this season and the commanding centre half Japhet Tanganga are just some of the players who could in my eyes all benefit from a loan spell in the football league. We shall see if any of those players are loaned out over the course of the coming weeks.

 

Spurs versus Burnley: (match preview)

Spurs versus Burnley: (match preview)

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The festive period is upon us and so too are a string of very important games for us Spurs fans to enjoy. Starting with an away trip to Burnley this Saturday, Pochettino’s side are fresh from that painful 4-1 defeat to Man City last Saturday. Pochettino will be looking to instil confidence into his side ahead of some must win fixtures. The trip to turf moor will surely be considered as one of those ‘must win’ games, even though the clarets sit ahead of us in the table. Sean Dyche’s side have been one of the surprises of this season, operating on a small wage and transfer budget, Dyche has managed to build one of the leagues most well structured teams. Who have been able to grind out results against some of the finest sides in the league. Whilst their superb run of form isn’t likely to last the whole season, the clarets are an incredibly frustrating team to play against as we found out during our 1-1 draw in September at Wembley. Even without the important defensive duo of James Tarkowski and Stephen Ward for Saturday evenings game. Burnley still have the tenacity at the back to thwart the likes of Harry Kane and Christian Eriksen. Whilst also possessing the aerial qualities of Vokes and Wood up top. Pochettino’s side often react well after a big defeat, and I’m confident that that will be the case against Burnley. I’m expecting us to attack from the minute go and overwhelm the clarets with a sparkling attacking display which would certainly be a much welcome gift to Spurs supporters. COYS

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Lloris(c), Aurier, Sanchez, Vertonghen, Davies, Winks, Dier, Son, Dele, Eriksen, Kane.

Subs from: Vorm, Trippier, Foyth, Sissoko, Lamela, Dembele, Llorente.

Absent: Wanyama and Alderweireld.

My score prediction: 3-0 Spurs.

One to watch: the clarets striker and main goal threat Chris Wood.

Spurs 1-4 Manchester City: (my post match thoughts)

Spurs 1-4 Manchester City: (my post match thoughts)

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I think it’s fair to say that there weren’t too many Spurs fans who thought we’d come back from our game with Manchester City at the weekend, with anything other than a defeat. The brilliance of Pep Guardiola’s jaw dropping team which includes some of the most inform players on the planet, has captivated the imaginations of football fans with their fast attacking brand of football, breathtaking passages of play and their ability to tear apart the most sturdy of defences on the counter attack, the sky blues have become the most feared team in Europe. Was fear a factor in our 4-1 walloping at the hands of Guardiola’s side in Manchester yesterday evening? Probably not, but of course many fans will draw theories as to why Pochettino’s team were ripped apart so brutally, over the course of 90 minutes by the league leaders. Some may argue that Pochettino got his tactics wrong, that certain players weren’t up to scratch including Moussa Dembele whose name I have seen plastered across social media. However, in my eyes the factor behind Manchester City’s triumphant win over our lads, wasn’t down to tactical blunders by Pochettino or poor performances from his players. It was down to the individual brilliance of Guardiola and his incredible side that he has assembled, some of the football that his team are playing rival that off any produced in the premier league era. The fast incisive, counter attacking play that we saw yesterday would have beaten any side in Europe, the master creator Kevin De Bruyne the architect behind City’s superb forward play.

The game was an incredibly one sided one in which the home side controlled from the minute go, though the possession stats may not suggest that. Spurs were out run and outplayed over the 90 minutes unable to get many meaningful shots away, City attacked our four man defence with such ferocity and intent. That when they took the lead on 14 minutes following Ilkay Gundogan’s bullet header from the resulting corner, though the German was unmarked, it had come as no surprise. City had already peppered our defence in the opening minutes, their first of the game had come as no surprise. By some miracle we found ourselves just the one goal down at the break, Guardiola’s team had battered us, they were too sharp and extravagant for Pochettino’s team who had struggled to create at the other end. Whilst we started off the second period with much more intensity and creativity about our game, we still couldn’t stop the monumental attacking force of the citizens. We played with pride for a good 20 minutes but City’s second was always going to come. Kevin De Bruyne angered by a quite terrible challenge by Dele, took his frustrations out on the ball when he doubled City’s lead on 70 minutes. Two more followed as Spurs began to be carved open with devastating results. Substitute Gabriel Jesus missed a penalty before Raheem Sterling made it 3-0. And then 4-0 a couple of minutes later, what the fans were witnessing inside the Etihad was nothing short of a masterpiece. Whilst Christian Eriksen’s late consolation goal (which happened to be a fine strike) happened to bring a bit of late joy to the travelling fans.

It done little to shift the attention away from a Manchester City side who continue to defy expectation, their 16th league win on the bounce quite possibly their best yet. As for our lads, I can’t imagine there would have been many words said in the dressing room afterwards. There would have been nothing much to say other than that we had been the victims of a side who may just go on to achieve the quadruple this season! We certainly didn’t raise our game for the occasion but did he really play that bad? No is my answer to that, against any other team we probably would have got something out of that game. Yes, we were dominated in the central areas, Dembele and Winks struggling to cope. But that wasn’t there faults, nor was it the fault of our attacking players that they couldn’t carry the ball forward, and neither was it our defences fault that we took such an almighty battering. We are no longer used to as fans, to being outplayed like Man City done to us yesterday, we have come so far under Pochettino as a club then we have come under any manager in a generation, that the Tottenham of old has become a distant memory. Seldom though yesterday’s result was for us, as a fan all I can do is to take my hat off to Guardiola’s Man City. Their champagne football some of the best I’ve seen in many a year, their performance and in particular that of midfield maestro Kevin De Bruyne was quite simply out of this world! Some positives I did take away from yesterday’s game, was the superb shot stopping of Hugo Lloris. As well as the performance of the powerful Danny Rose at left back, who I thought had a fine game. Ultimately we lacked pace during yesterday’s encounter, and that is something I am sure Pochettino and Levy will be discussing ahead of the January transfer window.

We still find ourselves in a good position in the league and have some favourable fixtures coming up. Our next game away to Burnley on the 23rd, is definitely one that we can get back to winning ways. Champions league qualification is still with in our realms! COYS

 

Spurs versus Manchester City: (match preview)

Spurs versus Manchester City: (match preview)

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Rarely has there been a team in the premier league era who are seen as unstoppable or unbeatable. Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City side may just be that team, the sky blues are unbeaten in the league this season, they sit 11 points clear at the top of the table with a staggering 49 points after 17 games. Probably the best team on the planet right now, City are on course to smash the premier league record book, with there being a general consensus among football fans that the league is already in the bag for the league leaders. Well that may be the case but it won’t stop teams such as ourselves bringing their A game to them. Man City are the club who we have the most away wins over in the premier league era, they are also a team who we haven’t lost to since 2015. The press are running out of superlatives to describe the attacking brilliance of Guardiola’s side, from the wizardry defence splitting passes of Kevin De Bruyne to the clinical finishing of Sergio Aguero, and the inform pairing of Raheem Sterling and David Silva, Guardiola’s team are devastating on the counter. As a Spurs fan all I’m hoping to see from Pochettino’s team is that they express themselves on the pitch, and play that trademark attacking football which has seen them overcome City in recent seasons. We’re expected to lose and anything else is a bonus, though one weakness of this great side is defending set pieces, something that I’m sure Pochettino will try and exploit this evening. COYS!

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Lloris(c), Trippier, Dier, Vertonghen, Davies, Winks, Dembele, Eriksen, Dele, Son, Kane.

Subs from: Vorm, Aurier, Rose, Winks, Sissoko, Lamela, Llorente.

My score prediction: 2-1 to Spurs! Son to score a brace.

One to watch: One of the best players in the world right now, Belgian midfielder Kevin De Bruyne has the ability to win a game on his own. His footballing brain one of the best in the league, the Belgian is the creative force behind Man City’s attacking play. De Bruyne has recorded 5 goals and 8 assists in the league so far this season.

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

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

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

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

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

 

 

 

 

 

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

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

Spurs versus Brighton And Hove Albion: (match preview)

Spurs versus Brighton And Hove Albion: (match preview)

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Apologies about the late publication of this match preview, I’ve just arrived at Wembley. And to my great surprise I just met the Brighton team walking down the street, what a great experience to meet Brighton manager and Spurs legend Chris Hughton, he is a very nice guy! Regarding this evenings game, Spurs host newly promoted Brighton at the national stadium in what will be viewed by Pochettino as a must win game, bearing in mind that our next fixture is away to Man City. Chris Hughton’s Brighton team are one who I have a huge amount of respect for, they’ve adapted well to life in the premier league and have a fantastic work ethic and attitude both on and off the pitch. Their danger men include skilful winger Anthony Knockaert, creative force Pascal Gross and target man Glen Murray. Massively important game tonight! COYS

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Lloris(c), Aurier, Dier, Vertonghen, Rose, Sissoko, Winks, Lamela, Alli, Eriksen, Kane.

Subs from: Vorm, Trippier, Davies, Foyth, Son, Llorente, Nkoudou.

Absent: Alderweireld and Sanchez.

Doubtful: Wanyama.

My score prediction: 2-0.

One to watch: It’s quite rare that my ‘one to watch’ is a defender, but in this case I believe Brighton’s centre half Shane Duffy will provide the biggest threat to Pochettino’s side when these teams meet this evening. Chris Hughton’s side are built around their two big centre halves Dunk and Duffy. Duffy is a player who I have watched play for many years, a Derry man and Ireland international Duffy is an immensely talented centre half who is excellent in the air. He puts his body on the line and is also incredibly brave, I’d love to see him play for Spurs one day.

Spurs 5-1 Stoke City: Son inspires Spurs to emphatic victory!

Spurs 5-1 Stoke City: Son inspires Spurs to emphatic victory!

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Any return of the Wembley curse was swept away today, as Mauricio Pochettino’s Spurs side overcame Stoke City with a sparkling display, to end there winless run of 6 league games. The first half at the national stadium was a fine performance from the lilywhites, though they lacked a cutting edge in the final third, Spurs led 1-0 at the interval courtesy of an own goal from Stoke’s captain Ryan Shawcross, following a cross from Son Heung-Min. Stoke did have their chances in the first half, various openings were created by Shaqiri though Dier and Vertonghen dealt well with the potters attacking threat. Spurs started the second half in emphatic fashion, they looked rejuvenated refreshed even. They were sharper in their passing more decisive in their play, and most importantly of all more clinical. A goalscoring rout ensued against a helpless Stoke side, courtesy of goals from Son, a brace from Harry Kane and a much needed goal from Christian Eriksen. The quality of play in the second half was second to none, the sheer energy and movement made by us was unstoppable. However, in this piece I’m going to focus on the most influential player on the pitch the terrific Son.

Son has been in excellent form over recent games he has been sharp, energetic and creative. And he showed all of those qualities against Stoke today, he was different class. He played a big part in four of our goals, his off the ball movement and ability to make promising runs gave us a different option throughout the game. Son looked fitter than any other player on the pitch, playing on the left wing he caused problems for Pieters with his searing pace and tendency to whip good crosses into the box. His positioning and awareness were both top notch, he got in to space made decisive decisions and ran at the potters defence. His goal was well taken and proved to be a decisive moment in the game, but it’s not just today where he’s been the difference. It’s been on countless occasions since he joined Spurs in the summer of 2015, where he has provided the spark in games lacking in quality, especially in the final third. Following his contribution to this afternoons game, the South Korean international has now been directly involved in 11 of Spurs’ goals this campaign. When you bear in mind the fact that he had no pre season (due to injury) as well as the fact that he had been given few starts towards the beginning of the season, it doesn’t make mean reading at all. His goal to game ratio is also one of the best in the side, but it’s Son or ‘Sonny’ as he is affectionately known who consistently provides energy to a team so lacking in pace.

He is now a player in his prime, one with consistency and end product to his game. His performance against Stoke today underlines just how pivotal a player he is to Spurs’ future success and with a busy schedule over the festive period, he could prove to be our most important player. COYS

There was an interesting article in today’s match day programme, the discussion panel which is a regular series, was all about Son. Academy starlet Samuel Shashoua had some particularly interesting things to say on him and his style of play, he sums the Spurs star up perfectly. The article features on pages 31 and 32: “Sonny offers you something different because he can play combination football but at the same time he can beat his man one-v-one either side because of how good he is on both feet. He can do a little trick or play a one-two, so that’s his main way of getting in against a deep block – he looks for little combinations, looks to try to beat his man, so he’s important and he adds another dimension. There are not many players in world football at the moment who can finish as well off both feet, so that’s a big plus for him and for the team.”

Statistics: Senior: goal scorers: Alli-6
Davies-2
Kane-18
Eriksen-5
Son-7
Sissoko-2
Llorente-1
Nkoudou-1

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

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

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

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

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

 

Statistics 2017/18:

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

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

 

Luke Amos and Kazaiah Sterling: Some insight on the two Academy starlets braced for their Spurs debuts this evening:

Luke Amos and Kazaiah Sterling: Some insight on the two Academy starlets braced for their Spurs debuts this evening:

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There was a lot of talk about which Spurs youngsters would be included in our final champions league group game at home to APOEL on Wednesday evening. I myself went on about it in some detail in my preview of the game, predicting (as well as hoping) that the likes of S.Shashoua, Edwards and Sterling would all be amongst the match day squad, for a game which from Tottenham’s perspective they can not benefit from, having already secured top spot. It turns out that two Academy starlets will be part of this evenings squad as confirmed by Pochettino at yesterday’s press conference, tenacious midfielder Luke Amos (20) and promising striker Kazaiah Sterling (19) are both braced for their first appearance for the lilywhites. Even though it’s just the two players included by Pochettino and co, I’m absolutely delighted for the pair, who I have watched progress and develop for many years at youth level, below is some of my thoughts on the two players and some insight into their styles of play and traits.

Luke Amos: Now 20 years of age, Hertfordshire born midfielder Luke Amos looks set to make play his first competitive game in a Spurs shirt. The midfielder who joined our Academy set up from Ware youth in 2006, has risen through the ranks at Hotspur Way winning many plaudits along the way. An integral part of our talented FA youth cup team of 2014/15, Amos has also appeared on two occasions for the England under 18’s team and has gone on to become a key member of the development side. A tenacious defensive midfielder by trade, Amos enjoyed a successful loan spell at league one side Southend during the second part of last season. impressing manager Phil Brown and Southend fans alike. In my many match reports of Spurs development squad games, you’ll know from my individual player reviews that I’ll often describe Amos’ performance, as incredibly tidy/efficient, or that he broke up play really well and dominated the midfield. In fact I don’t think I’ve ever seen the youngster have a bad game, he is one of the most consistent and hard working Academy performers and that will be something that Pochettino will have noted from his time at the club. Though a versatile player, Amos mainly operates as a holding midfielder, a little like former Spurs man Lesniak in many respects. Amos is an anchor man a vital clog in a Spurs side that loves to attack and go forward. The midfielder covers a ridiculous amount of ground, presses the opposition well and isn’t flashy in his play. He keeps it simple with short passes and sharp incisive movement. He is tough tackling and determined, he isn’t the kind of player that’s going to play a defence splitting pass or one that will overplay situations with a sparkling piece of skill. He is more a player in the Wanyama mould, a player who does his defensive duties impeccably so that others can do the attacking sides of the game.

I remember Spurs legend Cliff Jones was left mighty impressed after seeing Amos play in PL2 game last season. Amos has impressed in the numerous senior friendlies he has been involved in, and with his terrific attitude and determination I’m sure that he’ll impress again tonight, if called upon.

Kazaiah Sterling: After bursting on to the scene as a schoolboy back in the spring of 2015 in the FA Youth Cup, former Leyton Orient youngster Kazaiah Sterling has been touted as a hot prospect by many Spurs fans and coaches alike. A talented young striker who has represented England at youth level, Sterling is a powerful and pacy centre forward who possesses a terrific work rate and desire to make promising runs in between the defenders. He is always on the move something that Pochettino will like a lot, but what I like most about young Sterling is his clinical ability in front of goal. He likes to finish with a hard and low effort he hits them early (like Keane) he is sharp of his mark and a real threat in the air. He shows great awareness and is a player who possesses a great goal scoring record at youth level. This season his tally for goals scored stands at 10, whilst he has also chipped in with 2 assists. His cameo for the season side in Hong Kong last season saw him net his first goal for Spurs! I was already planning on writing a much longer piece on the young striker and I will do that soon, I wish both our lads the very best of luck for this evening. COYS