Spurs under 18’s versus West Ham United: (match preview)

Spurs under 18’s versus West Ham United: (match preview)

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Our under 18’s are preparing to face West Ham United on Saturday morning at Little Heath, as they look to consolidate their place at the top of the under 18 southern division. After last weekends stalemate with Reading at Hotspur Way, Matt Wells side will be hoping to get back to winning ways when they face West Ham United in east London. This will be our under 18’s second London Derby of the season and whilst Spurs have started the season in stunning form, our London rivals have also started the season strongly. Mark Phillips West Ham side have won four of their opening five league games this season, and currently occupy fourth place in the league. A number of our under 18’s played for the under 19’s in the UEFA youth league during midweek, as they contested a fiery 1-1 draw with Inter Milan. Players such as Malachi Walcott, Luis Binks and J’Neil Bennett all played the full 90 minutes of that game and could end up finding themselves being rested for this Saturday’s London derby. Matt Wells will have been disappointed that he’s side were unable to finish off Reading last weekend, in a game in which they dominated in every respect. This fixture last season was a funny old game, we were on a good patch of form when we travelled to east London. However, it was a really scrappy game in which we were unable to make possession count and we were punished for that, by the much more direct Hammers youngsters. Whilst West Ham have started the season in fine form they are yet to come up against any of the big boys in the league thus far this campaign. Last season they were an extremely combative side who weren’t afraid to scrap for results and play ugly, if I may so.

It will be interesting to see how Tottenham lineup on Saturday morning (10:30 AM KO) it will also be interesting to see if Troy Parrott is drafted back into the side after his time in the under 23’s. Parrott has only made one appearance for our under 18 side this season having spent the majority of the time with Wayne Burnett’s development side. Another player who I’m hoping to see start the game is 18 year old forward Rodel Richards who made his return from injury against Inter Milan in midweek. Richards looked very sharp considering it was only his first game of the season. I think Matt Wells side will have to start well against West Ham if they are to get back to winning ways. Some of the Hammers most dangerous players include attacking midfielder Bernardo Rosa and Vernon Parkes and they could prove to be dangerous on the break. Last season I ended up going to West Ham’s Rush Green training ground only to find that they are unable to hold academy games at the facility, thankfully I made that game in time. Hopefully tomorrow’s trip on the London Underground will be a lot more straight forward. My match report will be out late on Saturday night.

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Oluwayemi, Tainio, Lyons-Foster, Statham, Cirkin, White, Bowden, Clarke, A.Shashoua (c), P.Patterson, Richards.

Subs from: Kurylowicz, Okedina, Thorpe, Markanday, Mukendi.

Doubtful: N/A.

Injured/unavailable: N/A.

Previous meeting: Spurs 0-2.

My score prediction: Spurs 2-1.

My one to watch: The Hammers Brazilian attacking midfielder Bernardo Rosa (18). The creative Rosa caused quite a few problems for our defence in this fixture last season, and the teenager has started the new campaign in excellent form. Finding the back of the net on four occasions already this season, Rosa has also made a number of appearances for West Ham’s development side and will be one of the Hammers most potent attacking players.

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Spurs under 19’s versus Inter Milan: (match preview)

Spurs under 19’s versus Inter Milan: (match preview)

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Our under 19’s kick off this seasons UEFA youth league campaign tomorrow when they face Italian giants Inter Milan on Tuesday afternoon, at the Stadio Breda. According to the UEFA website John McDermott is listed as our head coach for this seasons European campaign and McDermott will have a richly talented pool of players at his disposal for the tournament, which mirrors the UEFA champions league. Our under 18’s have started this season in scintillating form with four wins from their opening five league matches and whilst our under 23’s haven’t replicated this, they did however pick up an impressive first win of the season against Man City on Friday. Spurs gave a really good account of themselves in this competition last season in what was only their second ever involvement in it. We topped a group containing both Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund, before overcoming Monaco in the round of 16. Our campaign was eventually ended by Porto who beat us comfortably at Hotspur Way in March of 2018. Whilst there will be a lot of new faces in this seasons squad, Spurs will be hoping to emulate their group stage success in the competition this season. However, with the current holders of the competition Barcelona in their group, alongside both Inter Milan and PSV that task will be significantly more difficult to achieve this season. The way in which our under 18’s have started this season has been outstanding, the quality of their play and the fluidity of their passing has been breathtaking to watch. I think this set of players (the u19’s) is one of the best in the UEFA youth league this season and there will be no team in Europe who will want to come up against us, and that includes tomorrow’s opposition, Inter Milan. The abundance of talent that is in our under 19’s side is quite frightening, in many ways we are spoilt for choice. With the likes of Troy Parrott, Jamie Bowden, Paris Maghoma, Japhet Tanganga all to choose from tomorrow.

Inter Milan also had a good campaign last season, entering the competition through the domestic stage. Armando Madonna’s side reached the quarter finals of the competition where they were knocked out on penalties by Manchester City. Long famed for their academy set up, Inter Milan did well on the domestic stage last season, finishing second in the Primavera 1 (the Italian u19 league). I’m not going to lie and say that I know a great deal about their side however, I know that they are one of Italy’s top academy sides and will undoubtedly have a lot of talented players on their books. Winger Samuele Mulattieri and highly rated Irish centre half Ryan Nolan are the only two players who I know a little bit about. This competition will give our youngsters a great opportunity to test themselves against some of the finest youth teams in Europe. Coming up against different footballing cultures and enjoying exposure to much bigger audiences, I’m sure our lads are really looking forward to tomorrow’s game which is being shown live on BT sport 2. Sadly I will be unable to go tomorrow’s game however, I will be watching on with great interest and I wish all of our lads the very best of luck. Our under 19’s can go all the way in this competition this season and I say that without any hesitations.

My predicted lineup: (4-3-3) De Bie, Eyoma, Dinzeyi, Tanganga (c), Brown, Bowden, Maghoma, Roles, Markanday, Parrott, Bennett.

Subs from: Austin, Lyons-Foster, Binks, White, A.Shashoua, Patterson, Richards.

Doubtful: Oliver Skipp (Possible involvement with the first team)

Injured/unavailable: Tariq Hinds.

Previous meeting: Spurs 7-1 (2011).

My score prediction: Spurs 2-1.

My one to watch: Irish centre half Ryan Nolan is a player who has been touted for great things in the game. The teenager from county Clare has won many plaudits and for him to have been picked up by Inter Milan speaks volumes in itself. Nolan made his first team debut for Inter during pre-season.

Our full squad: https://www.uefa.com/uefayouthleague/season=2019/clubs/club=2608183/index.html

Spurs under 18’s versus Reading: (match preview)

Spurs under 18’s versus Reading: (match preview)

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Before I start my preview of this weekends game I’d like to congratulate the Tottenham under 17 side that won the Euro youth cup in Germany last week. Matt Wells and the lads continued their excellent start to the season, as a team consisting mainly of first year scholars, as well as under 16’s and a couple of second years overcame some fine youth teams on route to picking up the trophy. Our lads had a great tournament by all accounts, we reached the final courtesy of a 3-0 win over Anderlecht, before defeating Galatasaray 1-0 in the final courtesy of Harvey White’s first half penalty. Meanwhile Matt Wells’ under 18 side will be looking to continue their brilliant start to the new season when they face Reading at Hotspur Way on Saturday morning. Having won their opening four games of the new season, Spurs will be hoping to maintain their 100% record when the royals come to town at the weekend. David Dodds Reading haven’t started the season too badly themselves, and with three wins from their opening four league matches they currently occupy fifth spot in the table. Our under 18’s suffered contrasting fortunes when these two teams met in the league last season. After losing 1-0 against Reading in the reverse fixture at Hogwood Park, Spurs responded superbly to Jonathan Dinzeyi’s first half sending off in the home fixture later on in the campaign. Inspired by an excellent performance from former Spurs youngster Reo Griffiths, Spurs ended up winning that fixture 4-0. After having brushed aside the likes of Chelsea and Southampton already this season you’d have to fancy Matt Wells’ side making it five wins from five on Saturday. However, with our under 23’s playing against Manchester City the night before, key under 18 players J’Neil Bennett and Paris Maghoma are likely to feature in that game and would hence miss the Reading game the following morning. As would centre forward Troy Parrott who is suspended for the Reading game.

Another factor which could force Matt Wells into shuffling his squad around, much like he did when we played Southampton in our last game, is the fact that our under 19’s get their UEFA youth league campaign underway only a couple of days later. Our under 19’s opening UEFA youth league game against Inter Milan on Tuesday afternoon could mean that the likes of Bennett, Bowden, Maghoma and possibly even Markanday are rested for the Reading game. Even without those players Spurs should be able to overcome Reading on the day. Reading’s danger man is the inform Thierry Nevers who operates as a centre forward. In addition, former Spurs schoolboy Marcel Elva-Fontaine will be a threat out wide. Sadly I will be unable to report on the game as I will be at Wembley watching our first team take on Liverpool. I wish all of our lads the very best of luck.

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) De Bie (og), Lyons-Foster, Walcott, Binks, Cirkin, A.Shashoua (c), White, Clarke, Markanday, Patterson, Mukendi.

OG* = Overage goalkeeper.

Subs from: Oluwayemi, Tainio, Statham, Cooper, Asante.

Doubtful: N/A.

Injured/unavailable: Kacper Kurylowicz (currently on a youth loan with Barnet), Troy Parrott (suspended) and Rodel Richards (injured).

Previous meeting: Spurs 4-0.

My score prediction: Spurs 4-2.

My one to watch: The royals inform forward Thierry Nevers who has four goals from Reading’s opening four league matches this season.

Jamie Bowden: – The local lad who I’m hoping will follow in the footsteps of Harry Winks:

Jamie Bowden: – The local lad who I’m hoping will follow in the footsteps of Harry Winks:

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For many Spurs fans the name Jamie Bowden wouldn’t have meant an awful lot, up until our pre-season friendly against Girona at the beginning of last month. After the 17 year old who grew up off the park lane, came on in the 83rd minute of the game to make his first team debut for his boyhood club. For those of you who have read my match reports over the past two seasons, you’ll know how highly I rate the talented and terrifically consistent central midfielder. And after a sparkling start to the new 2018/19 season I thought I’d go into greater detail about the young prodigy, and considering it’s an international break at present I thought there was no better time to write my piece on the teenager from Tottenham. Especially, as I promised I would do in my report of our developments side encounter with Crawley last week, in which I awarded Jamie with the man of the match award for the second time in the space of just four days. A deep lying central midfielder with a distinctly creative style to his game, Jamie Bowden is currently in his second year of scholarship at Spurs. Bowden was a key component of the Tottenham under 18 side that reached the premier league cup final in the 2017/18 season. One of the youngest of Tottenham’s first year scholars. Bowden’s impressive performances cemented his place in the side over the course of the campaign, and he would go on to make 25 appearances for Parker’s side that same season. By no means a new name to me, I first saw Jamie play when he was only 14 years of age, in an academy showcase game involving Spurs and Ipswich’s under 15’s, back in March of 2016. Impressing in the centre of the park at Portman road, Bowden stood out with his passing range and composure both on and off the ball. The 14 year old also managed to find the back of the net courtesy of a stunning long range strike. The following season Bowden became an important member of our under 16’s side as well as earning a well deserved call up to the England under 16 team. The schoolboy made four appearances for our under 18’s during the 2016/17 campaign and with his maturity plain to see it was no wonder why.

However, it was in Bowden’s first year of scholarship at the club where he enjoyed arguably his greatest season yet. Making 25 appearances for Scott Parker’s side in all competitions along with two further appearances for the under 19’s in the UEFA youth league, Bowden was one of Parker’s most consistent performers. Bowden was a real force in the centre of the park, breaking up play effectively and keeping things tidy in the middle of the pitch. Young Jamie held his own against much stronger opponents, his reading of the game caught my eye very early on as did the teenagers tenacity and willingness to get to the ball before his man. Not only was the first year scholar an effective ball winner he was also one of our under 18’s most creative and influential players. A deep lying playmaker, Bowden’s exceptional passing range and fine vision for a pass contributed to many of the moves that led to our goals in the under 18 league. Bagging four assists and one goal throughout the domestic season, Bowden picked up many if not dozens of third assists and remained one of if not our best performer throughout the season. If you read back my match reports of last season you’ll know that I was raving about Bowden since the very first month of the season. From his decision making to his defending, and versatility across the park, not once did I see Jamie have a bad game. Filling in at centre half on numerous occasions during the season the teenager also impressed on the continent. And the youngster was awarded with the midfielder of the tournament award, for his string of excellent performances at the under 17 Borgaro Maggioni Righi tournament, in the spring of 2018. And Bowden has started the new 2018/19 season in exactly the same way, after impressing for our development side in pre-season Jamie has really upped his game in the under 18 southern league.

Bowden has put in a series of masterful and domineering performances in the centre of the park, the 17 year old has continued to shine. And after already matching his tally of four assists last season, Bowden is playing with even more confidence and flare to his game. After his superb display for our development side (on his competitive debut) during their Checkatrade trophy encounter with League two club Crawley Town last Tuesday, I thought it was about time I’d written a piece on our of most talented young players. Almost Carrick like in his play, Bowden is a deep lying central midfielder whose job is to act as a shield to the defence. Breaking up play, and keeping things ticking in the middle of the park like a Harry Winks type of player. Energetic and tenacious, Bowden is also exceptionally creative from deep and his excellent passing range has often been the difference for our under 18’s in games. With his deftly accurate passing and ability to read the game so well, Bowden reminds me of a young Harry Winks a player who he cites as one of his biggest influences. Like Winks, Bowden is a tireless central midfielder, a player who always manages to get back into his position at the vital time. Bowden is such an effective central midfielder who has a passing range just as impressive as the considerably older Winks. Young Jamie is a midfield technician who is able to combine his defensive duties with his devastating creativity. Like Michael Carrick, Bowden has that ability to take three or four players out of the game with a single pass, he also has the ability to dictate play from the middle of the park. Much more than a solid midfielder who can break up play and keep things tidy. The thing which impresses me time and time again about Bowden’s play is his awareness. He is constantly dropping into little pockets of space which allows him the time and the room to pick out other players who are higher up the pitch. Like his peer Oliver Skipp, Bowden reads the game with a maturity that is well beyond his years.

He knows when to make that cynical foul that is needed to thwart a dangerous attack, he also knows when he needs to feed the ball into the centre forward and with the deftness and the precision needed in order to paralyse the defence. However, it would be lazy to just draw comparisons with the likes of Carrick and Winks even though he reminds me of both, as for me Bowden is one of the least English, English midfielders at this level. From the way he reads the game, to the composure he shows whilst he is on the ball, Bowden is a typical Italian midfielder. With his almost Pirlo-esque passing and reading of the game, Bowden is able to do the nitty gritty side of the game to perfection whilst remaining focussed and aware of his surroundings. Despite his slight figure Bowden is strong in possession and rarely finds himself dispossessed, like his slightly older peer Oliver Skipp he keeps things simple and never overplays a situation. In many ways Bowden is quite similar to the more experienced Oliver Skipp, both are extremely attentive players who are very good at recycling possession and keeping their position. However, even if Bowden didn’t have that creative element to his game he’d still be an exceptionally talented player, but it’s that edge to his game which has always caught my eye. His all round ability on the football pitch is quite striking as he demonstrated so effectively against Crawley last week. Coming up against the physically imposing midfield duo of Dannie Bulman and Mark Randall, Bowden held his own in the middle of the park alongside his more offensive partner Paris Maghoma. The teenager stayed deep as he snuffed out danger, proving to be a vital cog in Burnett’s side. As the game progressed Bowden became more confident and assertive. And during the second half Bowden showed off his impressive passing range, pulling off some ambitious passes to feed the centre forward (Shayon Harrison) in.

The midfielder also showed this maturity in the Tournoi Europeen in pre-season, when he put in a string of highly effective midfield performances against older and more physical opposition. Bowden is an Irish Londoner who is eligible to represent Ireland at international level and considering how frequently scouts from the FAI turn up to watch games at Hotspur Way, I would be astonished if he wasn’t already on their radar. Having watched him play extensively over the past couple of seasons I can say that Bowden is undoubtedly one of the finest central midfielders of his age group, in this country and I was particularly surprised that the three lions didn’t call him up over the summer for the under 17 European championships. Jamie is a nuisance to come up against, he is tigerish and unrelenting, unafraid to get stuck in though he is astute in his defending and is never rash in the challenge. I’m not going to compare him with Skipp or Maghoma for the simple fact that they are all different types of midfielders, who all have different attributes and styles. However, Bowden is one special talent and an elegant one at that, so often you see technically gifted midfielders who don’t possess that impressive passing range. However, Bowden pings the ball about like a young Pirlo, he is a midfield craftsman as much as he is a defensive midfielder. He reads the game well, he has a decent shot at his disposal but what Bowden has that so many young midfielders don’t have is the ability to pick apart a defence with a single pass. The weight and sheer accuracy of his passing is just sublime. In my opinion Bowden is more than ready to make the permanent step up to the under 23 side, he is far too good for the under 18 league. And whilst he does lack in strength he makes up for it in intelligence and awareness, as he showed against Crawley he is ready to make that step up. If Bowden is promoted to the development side then he will provide Burnett with a real creative edge from the middle, something which they have really lacked so far this season, and I’m hoping that he’ll start against Manchester City on Friday to prove this.

Jamie Bowden has been at Spurs since the age of six, he is a lifelong Tottenham fan who has been immersed in the philosophies and traditions of the club. Without sounding overly positive in this article (which I am by no means being!) I couldn’t sing his praises highly enough, and like Skipp and Winks he is the perfect Pochettino player who ticks so many boxes. Like Skipp, Bowden strikes me as a quiet and unassuming lad, I just hope that he continues to enjoy his football and develop as he does so. He has a very big future with both Spurs and Ireland and he is a player who you will be hearing a lot more about over the course of the season.

Shayon Harrison on Jamie’s performance against Crawley Town last week: “Jamie in the midfield, in his first game, looked so comfortable and looked like he’s played in 100 games already!”

Spurs under 18’s 5-2 Southampton: (match report)

Spurs under 18’s 5-2 Southampton: (match report)

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After a chaotic journey which involved me being stuck in traffic for large periods of the morning, I made it in the nick of time to Staplewood on Saturday morning to report on our under 18’s league game against Southampton. I was mightily relieved to have got to see Matt Wells side continue their excellent 100% start to the season on Saturday, despite them missing a whole host of important players. Wells side overcame the Saints with an emphatic 5-2 victory as Spurs moved up to first place in the southern league. It was another excellent attacking performance from our youngsters against a Southampton side with a lot of talent in it, Spurs’ high energy football was unmatchable. The way in Which Wells’s side were able to up their tempo in the second half despite already finding themselves 2-1 up, was hugely impressive. As too was the way in which they picked apart the Southampton defence with such intricate and clever attacking football. It was in so many ways the perfect team performance from the young Lilywhites who even with a depleted side still showed just how talented this pool of players are, and just how far they can go this season under the tutelage of Matt Wells. Sharp and incisive from the offing in what was an incredibly even and end to end game during the first half, Spurs took the lead early on through makeshift centre forward Jeremie Mukendi. The lively forward then doubled Spurs’ advantage with his second of the game 15 minutes later, in what was almost a carbon copy of the first goal. However, Southampton were really testing us in the final third and the home team pulled a goal back on 19 minutes through wide man Enzo Robise. However, it was in the second half that Spurs really started to up their game.

Playing with a much higher intensity to their game, Spurs moved the ball about quicker. A 19 minute three goal blitz from Wells’s side effectively put the game to bed, as goals from Markanday, Clarke and Patterson put the game out of sight. Sparkling and at times unplayable, Spurs put in a really mature performance against a good Southampton team. Despite pulling a goal back through former Tottenham schoolboy Rio Glean in stoppage time, Wells’s side held on, to record an impressive 5-2 victory at Staplewood. That win sees them go top of the southern league joint on points with West Ham who they play later this month. Without the talented trio of Paris Maghoma, J’Neil Bennett and Troy Parrott all of whom were involved in the under 23 game the night before, Wells was forced into rotating his side for our encounter with Southampton, this meant that some of the fringe members of the squad were able to get rare starts at this level. Spurs lined up with overage goalkeeper Jonathan De Bie in goal, with a back four of Tainio, Walcott, Binks and White sitting in front of him. In the middle of the park was the central midfield pairing of Armando Shashoua (captain) and Jamie Bowden. Whilst Pochettino, Markanday and Patterson lined up behind 17 year old Jeremie Mukendi who made a rare start up top. Spurs got the game underway on what was a sunny morning down in County Hampshire. There was a lively start to the game as Southampton came close to taking the lead early on after a good move down the left hand side. James Morris’s pacy delivery into the Tottenham penalty area picked out the Saints skipper Sean Brennan inside the box. The Irishman looked up before firing the ball straight at Jonathan De Bie who gathered it comfortably. And straight from that chance came Spurs’ first real attack. De Bie quickly distributed the ball out from the back, as Jamie Bowden powered forward through the middle before playing a wonderful defence splitting pass through to Mukendi.

Mukendi took a touch on the edge of the penalty area before continuing into the box and rifling the ball into the bottom left hand corner of Jack Bycroft’s goal, despite being put under pressure by a Southampton defender, 1-0. It was an excellent finish from Mukendi in only the fourth minute of the game, he managed to show his composure in front of goal with an excellent finish across goal. The game quickly picked up pace and there was an air of unpredictably about it, with chances aplenty at both ends of the pitch. Southampton came close to scoring after a well worked move from the home side which saw Dan Bartlett play in Christian Norton down the right wing. The Southampton forward whipped the ball across goal where he managed to find Will Ferry at the back post. Ferry’s powerful effort at goal was excellently blocked out for a corner by Tainio on the line. Ferry pumped the resulting corner kick into the box with Allan Tchapchet rising to meet the ball. The towering centre half’s looping header was heading in but for an excellent headed clearance from White on the line. Bartlett then fired over from long range as the fast paced start to the game continued, as Spurs looked to strengthen their advantage. Dilan Markanday and Armando Shashoua combined well around the Southampton penalty area, as the former attempted to scoop the ball over the Southampton defence and onto Shashoua on the edge of the penalty area. However, the skippers effort was blocked by the alert David Agbonthoma who managed to get in front of the Spurs man, Markanday then had a shot blocked in a similar position a couple of minutes later. There was plenty of intricate attacking football on show from Matt Wells side during the opening stages of the game. Shashoua was buzzing around like a bee across the final third and the captain almost doubled Spurs’ advantage when he met Patterson’s cross inside the penalty area. Shashoua controlled the ball before side footing it narrowly wide of Bycroft’s near post.

Malachi Walcott conceded a free kick in a dangerous position on the edge of the penalty area a couple of minutes later at the other end of the pitch, after fouling Enzo Robise. Robise’s resulting under the wall free kick was however, comfortably gathered by the attentive De Bie in the centre of the Spurs goal. Then on 19 minutes Spurs doubled their advantage courtesy of Mukendi’s second of the game. It was a wonderfully direct attack from Spurs as Walcott’s long pass from deep managed to bounce over the head of Tchapchet on the edge of the penalty area and into the feet of Mukendi. The 17 year old managed to control the ball and shrug off the attention of Tchapchet before calmly finding the bottom left hand corner of the goal with a powerful finish. It was in many ways a carbon copy of Mukendi’s first goal, 2-0. Armando Shashoua’s dangerous cross into the Southampton penalty area just deceived Pochettino who was lurking at the back post a couple of moments later, as Spurs continued their good start to the game. However, Southampton had been just as dangerous going forwards in the half, and the Saints came close to pulling a goal back. Will Ferry’s excellent cross into the box just missed the head of Norton who was ghosting in at the back post, the ball continued across to Caleb Watts who couldn’t control the ball as it went harmlessly out for a goal kick. Ferry whipped another menacing ball across the face of De Bie’s goal a couple of moments later as Southampton looked to exploit us down that side of the pitch. Markanday and Mukendi failed to combine inside the penalty area at the other end. However, Southampton were allowed a way back into the game on the half hour mark after De Bie gave away a penalty. A lovely ball over the top of the Tottenham defence from Ferry managed to pick out Robise down the right side of the penalty area. De Bie came rushing out of his goal to try and close down the angles for Robise, but the Belgian had clipped the feet of Robise who went flying to the ground, as the referee pointed to the spot. Robise regained his composure to take the resulting spot kick, and the winger cooly fired the ball into the bottom right hand corner of De Bie’s goal despite the best efforts of the Spurs keeper who had managed to guess the right way, 2-1.

Southampton seemed to get a bit of a boost in confidence after Robise had pulled a goal back for the home team. A good pass from Norton managed to pick out Brennan down the left side of the penalty area shortly after the restart. The Irishman’s powerful low effort at goal was saved well by De Bie who managed to produce an impressive reflex save to deny the Saints from drawing level. De Bie punched clear Bartlett’s corner kick a couple of minutes later as the Saints continued to pile the pressure on the Tottenham defence. A sloppy pass from Markanday into the feet of Brennan shortly afterwards allowed the Dubliner to set Norton racing through the right side of the penalty area after Brennan had slipped the ball through to him. Norton took his effort early and forced an excellent save out of De Bie who managed to stop the strikers venomous effort with an impressive diving save. The tireless Jamie Bowden then blocked a shot from the same player inside the box a matter of seconds later. Wells’s side weren’t playing with enough width and this was putting their back four under unnecessary pressure as they tried to play the ball through the middle. Shashoua did well to win a free kick in a dangerous position for Spurs as the young Lilywhites looked to strengthen their lead. However, Harvey White’s resulting delivery into the danger zone managed to deceive every one in navy blue as it went harmlessly wide. Jeremie Mukendi then had the chance to secure his hat-trick after Shashoua had left the ball off for the forward on the edge of the penalty area, after working his way through the middle of the Southampton defence. However, Mukendi’s resulting effort was dragged wide across the face of Bycroft’s goal even though he had Shashoua in space down the left side of the box. Spurs were then caught on the break as Ferry played in Brennan down the left hand side of the penalty area. In time and in space, the Southampton captain made the wrong decision as he attempted to find Norton at the back post despite having so much of the goal to aim at. Brennan’s mistimed cross ended up going out for a goal kick for Spurs.

Jamie Bowden then fired an effort narrowly over the top of Bycroft’s goal after being picked out on the edge of the area by Patterson, on the stroke of halftime. The Saints got the second half underway as both sides looked to capitalise on what was a chaotic and fast paced game of football. Spurs had really upped their tempo for the beginning of this half, and they looked a lot sharper with the ball. Straight from the restart Markanday embarked on a weaving run into the Southampton penalty area, but the attack was stopped by Southampton fullback Kayne Ramsay who produced a well timed sliding challenge to rob the ball off of Markanday inside the area. Shashoua tried a similar route through to goal a couple of minutes later after he attempted to trick his way through the Southampton defence and he almost succeeded but for an interception from Agbonthoma on the edge of the penalty area. Spurs had started the half in excellent fashion and they were really making the Southampton defence work hard. Midfield craftsman Jamie Bowden almost managed to pick out Mukendi inside the penalty area with a well weighted through ball, but Bycroft came out to smother the ball. Everything was pointing to a third Spurs goal, and that duly arrived for Matt Wells side in the 51st minute of time. It was a sublime move from Spurs as the flawless Luis Binks spotted the run of Markanday towards the penalty area. The teenager made a laser beam of a pass into the danger zone which Markanday met just as Bycroft came rushing out to meet it. Markanday smartly chested the ball away from Bycroft before swivelling round the Southampton keeper, and clipping home from a tight angle down the left hand side of the box, it was an excellently taken goal from the number ten, 3-1. Jamie Bowden fired just over after the restart as the attacking pressure from Matt Wells side showed no signs of slowing down. The resulting goal kick from Bycroft was poor and ended up coming straight out to Mukendi who was around 25 yards out from goal.

The pacy forward powered down the left hand side before having a wild swing at goal, of which was deflected out for a Tottenham corner kick. Still vulnerable on the counter as shown by Ferry when he sped away from the Tainio out on the left wing, Spurs were only let off because Ferry had little to aim at inside the box as De Bie comfortably gathered the wingers cross. Wells then made his first substitution of the game when he brought off the slightly ineffective Pochettino for Clarke on the hour mark. Unable to keep up with Matt Wells super fit and energetic side, Spurs made it 4-1 on 66 minutes after the newly introduced Rayan Clarke extended our lead. Bowden turned the creator once more after he fed in Clarke down the right side of the penalty area. Clarke cut inside onto his left before showing off his fancy footwork as he worked his way past Morris and Tchapchet inside the area before firing the ball into the bottom right hand corner of Bycroft’s goal, 4-1. It was a superbly taken goal from Clarke on what was his first appearance of the season for our under 18’s, after a lengthy injury lay off. It was all Spurs, as Matt Wells dominant side continued to trouble the rather fragile looking Southampton defence. The lively Mukendi almost managed to pick out Dilan Markanday inside the penalty area with a clever lofted pass. Whilst Southampton almost pulled a goal back at the other end after the pacy Kayne Ramsay powered down the right wing before cutting inside and finding Ferry on the opposite side with a nice crisp pass. Ferry got the ball out of his feet early and managed to find Norton at the back post with a nice cross. Thankfully for De Bie and the Tottenham defence, Norton’s effort from close range flew over De Bie’s crossbar. And it was from the following attack down the other end of the pitch that Spurs managed to put the game to bed once and for all to make it 5-1. The potent Phoenix Patterson played a clever one two with Bowden on the edge of the penalty area, as the former picked up the ball on the edge of the penalty area before continuing into the box and firing the ball past Bycroft and into the far right hand corner of the goal, 5-1. Bycroft did manage to get a touch on the birthday boys effort, but he wasn’t able to prevent it from flying in.

Spurs continued to dominate proceedings, Markanday’s pass to Clarke down the right resulted in the winger firing the ball over the goal, Luis Binks was replaced moments later by Elliot Thorpe, whilst Maxwell Statham came on for Walcott to make his return from injury. Spurs were just knocking the ball around the park with ease however, Southampton always remained dangerous on the counter. After Shashoua had given the ball straight to the newly introduced Simon Kozak, the Southampton substitute had managed to play the ball into Norton inside the Tottenham penalty area. However, Norton’s powerful effort at goal was excellently blocked by Statham who came sliding across the Saints striker, as De Bie gobbled up the loose ball. Norton then volleyed over the Spurs goal after going to meet Southampton substitute Rio Glean’s cross at the back post. And once again the frustrated Southampton striker came close to finding the net as we approached the final stages of the game. Will Ferry’s superb delivery into the box was met by Norton at the back post, but with the goal gaping at his mercy, Norton fired the ball against De Bie’s crossbar from close range. The rebound came out to Bartlett on the edge of the box as the Southampton midfielder blazed the ball over the crossbar. Much deserving of a goal of his own, Armando Shashoua came close to finding a late goal. After Clarke had slipped the ball into the Tottenham midfielder inside the penalty area. Shashoua shimmied away from a Southampton defender before firing the ball into the side netting. Markanday attempted to play Patterson in down the right side of the penalty area a couple of minutes later, but the attacking midfielders pass was slightly over hit. There was a further flurry of action as we entered stoppage time, Harvey White made a good block to stop Ramsey’s effort down the right. Whilst Bowden had an effort at goal blocked by Morris at the other end.

And it was from Bowden’s attempt at goal that the Saints counter attacked us and with late consequences. Norton powered through the middle before slipping the ball into the feet of former Spurs schoolboy Rio Glean down the right side of the penalty area. Despite Harvey White’s last ditch challenge on his former teammate, Glean managed to fire the ball into the bottom left hand corner of De Bie’s goal, 5-2. The final score from Staplewood was Spurs under 18’s 5-2 Southampton, it was another hugely impressive and mature performance from Matt Wells side as they managed to outplay a direct but talented Southampton outfit, to send them top of the under 18 southern league after four games played. Spurs will be looking to continue their 100% start to the season when they face Reading at Hotspur Way after the international break.

Player reviews: – Jonathan De Bie: It was an impressive performance from the overage goalkeeper, on only his second appearance of the season. De Bie made a string of fine saves to deny the Saints from scoring more goals, he was attentive and effective at dealing with set pieces. However it was the Belgians many impressive saves especially to deny the potent Christian Norton which proved so effective, including an excellent stop to deny Norton in the first half. In total the 18 year old made eight saves against the Saints.
– Maximus Tainio: A player who seems to be improving by every game, Tainio managed to put in a strong defensive performance up against the tricky Will Ferry on Saturday. Reading the game well, Tainio’s tight defending against Ferry made up for his lack of pace, as the young Finn managed to thwart numerous attacks down that side of the pitch. Tainio also managed to make a heroic goal line block to prevent Southampton from taking the lead early on in the game.
– Malachi Walcott: Forming a great defensive partnership with Luis Binks, Walcott put in another strong performance for Spurs on Saturday. Playing 78 minutes of the game, Walcott dealt well with the threat posed by Norton up top. Dominant in the air and strong in the challenge, Walcott read the game well and capped off a fine performance with a lovely long pass to set up Mukendi’s second goal of the game. Walcott and Binks complimented one another, they are such a strong centre back pairing.
– Luis Binks: It was another flawless performance from young Luis Binks (17) in the centre of Tottenham defence. He read the game to perfection and never allowed Norton to be given much space in and around the Tottenham penalty area. So composed and Alderweireld like in his defending, and the way in which he just steps in front of his man, Binks never looked fazed. He also contributed to the Spurs attack with his trademark cross field diagonal passes, Binks created Markanday’s and Spurs third of the game with a superb laser like pass. Not only was it a wonderful ball into Markanday, but he also showed great awareness to spot the impending run of the attacking midfielder.
– Harvey White: The versatile midfielder slotted in at left back for the trip to Southampton. And once again the 16 year old put in a really assured performance this time up against Southampton’s Enzo Robise out on the left wing. White kept his man in check throughout the game and made some important defensive contributions during the match. Of which included a goal line clearance early on in the game, as well as some really good blocks in and around the Tottenham penalty area. There was shades of Ogilvie in White’s performance agains the Saints, I look forward to seeing him play in his natural position of central midfield as the season progresses.
– Jamie Bowden: My motm, see below.
– Armando Shashoua: Wearing the captains arm band for the third consecutive game in a row, Armando Shashoua played in central midfield alongside Jamie Bowden. The 17 year old put in another impressive performance in the centre of the park even though he would often drift out to the left flank. Shashoua’s ball retention rate was impressive as were the many interceptions he made alongside Jamie Bowden. However, he managed to link defence with attack, going on some nice attacking forays through the middle. The teenagers movement in and around the penalty area was also very good and he managed to have two attempts on goal.
– Maurizio Pochettino: Although Pochettino always looked good on the ball whenever he received it out on the right wing, he often found himself isolated due to Spurs not playing with much width during the first half. By the time that Spurs started to play down the channels more, Pochettino was withdrawn in place of Rayan Clarke.
– Dilan Markanday: Markanday played through the middle as a number ten as oppose to being a wide man for our game against Southampton. He was one of our main creative outlets and his many weaving runs through the middle unsettled the Saints defence. Markanday capped off a fine performance with an excellently taken goal right at the beginning of the second half.
– Phoenix Patterson: It was another good showing from the birthday boy out on the left wing. Hard working throughout the game, Patterson’s good runs down the left were often ignored in the first half as Spurs played with little width about their game. However, the 18 year old was far more involved in the game in the second half, often linking up well with Shashoua down that side. Patterson embarked on some fruitful twisting runs and he remained a creative force for Spurs throughout the half. The winger ended up netting our fifth and final goal of the game after a well worked move with Bowden resulted in Patterson finishing the move off in style with a fine finish.
– Jeremie Mukendi: Constantly making good runs in and behind the Southampton defence, Mukendi made the most of a rare start at this level to put in a terrific performance against Southampton. This was the first time that I’d seen the winger play up front since his days as an under 15 and I was mightily impressed with what I saw. The quality of Mukendi’s runs and his high work rate would have greatly impressed Wells. But it was the 17 year olds two well taken goals that showed how clinical a finisher he is and how well timed his runs are. It was a very promising performance from a player who has really struggled for game since joining us full time in 2017.
– Rayan Clarke: Introduced in the hour mark to replace Pochettino out on the right wing, Clarke’s first under 18 appearance of the season was a good one. And apart from his excellently taken goal shortly after his introduction, Clarke was a live wire down that right hand side, his searing pace and willingness to take men on and cut inside onto his left was great to see.
– Elliot Thorpe: A short cameo for the Welsh under 19 international who replaced Binks with 15 or so minutes left of the game. Thorpe’s passing was crisp and he looked promising on the ball, I just hope that we get to see a lot more of him this season as he is a player with real ability.
– Maxwell Statham: Another player who came off the bench to make a short cameo late on in the game. Statham made a hugely important late block to close down Norton inside the Tottenham penalty area.

My man of the match: Jamie Bowden. Like his peer Oliver Skipp, Bowden is one of the least English, English (even though he’s second generation Irish!) central midfielders you’ll find at this level. Bowden dictated the tempo of the game against Southampton and was Matt Wells most influential player on the day. He read the game so very well, and whilst combative and good at breaking up play it was Bowden’s creativity which really stood out. His vision and guile in the centre of the park, Bowden was a midfield craftsman who oozed with confidence. Getting a hat-trick of assists against Southampton, Bowden was ubiquitous across the field. His perfectly weighed through ball to set up Mukendi for his first of the game was superb. As too was his vision to spot Clarke making the run down the right hand side for our fourth goal. Bowden was tireless, aggressive but most of all he was effective at both ends of the pitch. A vital cog in Matt Wells’s side, the Londoner was a midfield technician against the Saints. He plays almost like a young Italian midfielder, cultured but mature beyond his years. He doesn’t need strength to show his quality. Ironically Bowden has been overlooked for the Ireland under 19 side which Troy Parrott has just been called up to. The FAI surely must be keeping tabs on one of England’s best central midfielders at u18 level!

Spurs: De Bie, Tainio, White, Bowden, Walcott (Statham 78), Binks (Thorpe 76), Pochettino (Clarke 60), A Shashoua (c), Mukendi, Markanday, Patterson. Substitutes (not used): Oluwayemi, Asante.

Spurs under 18’s statistics 2018/19:

Goals scored: J’Neil Bennett – 4
Troy Parrott – 2
Paris Maghoma – 2
Dennis Cirkin – 2
Jeremie Mukendi – 2
Luis Binks – 1
Brooklyn Lyons-Foster – 1
Armando Shashoua – 1
Dilan Markanday – 1
Rayan Clarke – 1
Phoenix Patterson – 1

Assists: Harvey White – 4
Jamie Bowden – 4
Armando Shashoua – 3
Phoenix Patterson – 2
Paris Maghoma – 1
Maurizio Pochettino – 1
J’Neil Bennett -1
Malachi Walcott – 1
Luis Binks – 1

Clean sheets: Joshua Oluwayemi – 1

Spurs under 18’s versus Southampton: (match preview)

Spurs under 18’s versus Southampton: (match preview)

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Our under 18’s will take a trip down to the south coast on Saturday to face Southampton in the under 18 southern league. It’s been an excellent start to the season for Matt Wells’s talented side, who have won their first three league games of the season, and sit joint top of the southern league along with Arsenal and West Ham on nine points. After another excellent performance to beat Chelsea 2-0 at Hotspur Way last Saturday, Wells’s side will be brimming with confidence ahead of our encounter with the Saints. We have enjoyed our time at Southampton’s Staplewood training ground during recent seasons. Last season we beat a richly talented Southampton side 2-1, the season before that we thrashed them 6-2 and the season before that we beat them 3-1! Hoping to carry that winning trend into Saturday’s game, Spurs will be hoping to produce more of the sparkling attacking football which saw them overcome Brighton, Swansea and Chelsea so comprehensively. Long famed for their academy set up, Southampton were one of the most impressive sides we played at under 18 level last season. Although we beat them 2-1 at Staplewood, they gave us a really tough game. Moving the ball around well, they were menacing going forwards. The attacking Irish duo of Michael Obafemi and Jonathan Afolabi were particularly troubling that day, thankfully they are no longer eligible to play at this level. Craig Fleming’s Southampton side haven’t started the new season in the best of form, having only picked up one point from their first three league games. That solemn point came in the Saints 2-2 draw with Fulham last Saturday. Southampton actually had a really good season in the league during the 2017/18 campaign. Finishing above us in third place, Fleming’s side finished the season with 42 points. Arguably not as strong as last season Southampton’s main danger men are Sean Brennan and Craig Norton. It’s also worth mentioning their 16 year old winger Rio Glean, Glean was a schoolboy with Spurs last season. However, they also have a particularly strong defence.

With the likes of Kameron Ledwidge, Pascal Kpohomouh and David Agbontohoma just some of their talented defenders. With the under 23 game against Arsenal occurring the night before the Southampton game, I wouldn’t be surprised if Parrott, Maghoma and possibly even Bennett are selected for that game. Hence, being unavailable for our encounter with the Saints the following morning, this could mean that the likes of Mukendi and Asante will start the game. On current form you’d have to fancy our lads making it four wins from four when these two teams meet on Saturday morning. However, a team of Southampton’s ilk can never be underestimated and if we let them play their own brand of attacking football then they will punish us for it. I’m sure it will be an entertaining game of football down on the south coast and as always I shall be there to report on it. After reporting on our under 23’s north London derby at the Emirates the previous night I’ll be heading straight down to Southampton ahead of Saturday mornings game.

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) De Bie (OG*), Tainio, Binks, Lyons-Foster, White, Bowden, A.Shashoua (c), Markanday, Patterson, Mukendi, Asante.

Subs from: Oluwayemi, Walcott, Okedina, Thorpe, Pochettino.

Doubtful: Dennis Cirkin and Maxwell Statham.

Injured/unavailable: Rodel Richards and Rayan Clarke.

OG* = Overage goalkeeper.

Previous meeting: 1-1.

My score prediction: Spurs 2-0.

My one to watch: Southampton’s nimble footed forward Sean Brennan, adept at playing out wide or through the middle as a number ten. Brennan represented Ireland at the U17 Euros this summer and is another Irish teenager to have made the move to the south coast club. Brennan was particularly threatening during our 1-1 with Southampton at Hotspur Way last season. The 17 year olds trickery and speed down the left side caused major problems for Tottenham fullback Jamie Reynolds that day.

ICYMI: https://superhotspur.com/2018/08/27/spurs-under-18s-2-0-chelsea-match-report/

Spurs under 18’s 2-0 Chelsea: (match report)

Spurs under 18’s 2-0 Chelsea: (match report)

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Our under 18’s continued their 100% start to the new season with a hugely impressive 2-0 league victory over Chelsea on Saturday morning. Matt Wells side got one over on their own rivals as the spectators were treated to more sparkling attacking football. As I spoke about in my preview I mentioned the change that has occurred in the Chelsea academy over the summer, with longtime head coach Jody Morris having departed the club. This new look group of first year scholars are all very new to under 18 football and I always fancied our chances up against them. Wells opted to field a nice blend of first and second year players for the London derby. With 16 year old centre backs Malachi Walcott and Luis Binks starting in the heart of the Tottenham defence. Armando Shashoua retained the captains armband and lead by example in the middle of the park, whilst young J’Neil Bennett started up top for the second time this season. Spurs were excellent throughout the game, the whole team played out of their skin as they performed Tottenham’s attacking football to perfection. We used the ball well and after taking the lead in the ninth minute of the game after a fine finish from Paris Maghoma, Spurs passed Chelsea off the park for the remainder of the half. Dominating possession, the blues were unable to match our high intensity and they really struggled to create many chances of their own. However, despite our excellent first half performance we didn’t make our possession count as we squandered a couple of good chances, we could have been 3-0 up going into halftime. Our slender advantage put us under pressure during the second half as Alan Myers resurgent Chelsea side upped their intensity. They created a hell of a lot more chances in the second half and were it not for the heroic defending of Walcott and Binks who were absolutely sensational then they would have drawn level. Thankfully for Spurs captain Armando Shashoua tapped home from close range to double our advantage on 72 minutes to secure all three points for Wells’s side. I was so proud of how our lads played and I continue to believe that this could be shaping into a glorious season for Spurs at this level, on the domestic stage at least.

Played on a relatively sunny morning at Hotspur Way, Spurs lined up with the 4-2-3-1 formation for the visit of Chelsea. Matt Wells gave goalkeeper Joshua Oluwayemi his second start of the season, whilst a back four consisting of Tainio, Walcott, Binks and White stood in front of the 17 year old goalkeeper. In front of them was the highly effective midfield partnership of Jamie Bowden and captain Armando Shashoua. With the attacking trio of Markanday, Maghoma and Patterson all behind the potent J’Neil Bennett who lead the line. Chelsea were missing notable second years such as Hudson-Odoi and Gilmour but they still fielded a strong side with the likes of George Nunn and Clinton Mola starting for Alan Myers side. Ahead of the kick off the Spurs players all huddled together as the skipper Armando Shashoua urged his teammates to ’ come on ’ ahead of what was a hugely important league game for Matt Wells’s side. Spurs got the game underway with the first notable piece of action coming in the opening couple of minutes as the attentive Jamie Bowden cleared Clinton Mola’s menacing corner kick. Centre forward George Nunn headed over at the back post after going to meet Henry Lawrence’s cross, with Tainio allowing him a lot of space to get the header away. After a fairly even start the lively J’Neil Bennett embarked on his first testing run of the game after winning the ball in the middle of the park. The 16 year old darted forwards as he beat Jack Wakely with ease out on the left wing before squaring the ball to Patterson on the edge of the penalty area. Patterson controlled the ball before looking up and curling an effort narrowly wide of Karlo Ziger’s far post. After really taking the game by the scruff of the neck, Wells’s extremely energetic side continued to trouble the Chelsea defence, and they caught them off guard on nine minutes as Spurs took a surprise lead through Paris Maghoma.

It was an incredibly well worked goal, the lively Shashoua passed the ball to Bennett who was around 30 yards out from goal and in a central position. The makeshift centre forward spotted the darting run of Maghoma before quickly play a well weighted through ball into the attacking midfielder who had got in front of the Chelsea back line, he powered forwards as he found himself one on one with Ziger in the Chelsea goal. Maghoma steadied himself before just calmly skipping past the goalkeeper who had come running off of his line. With the composure of a seasoned pro Maghoma took his time before slotting the ball past the Chelsea defenders and into the bottom left hand corner of the goal, as they defended frantically on the line, 1-0. It was such a cool finish from Maghoma who had made a difficult chance look like a training ground drill. Spurs had looked so comfortable in possession as they looked to build on their early lead and the young Lilywhites should have had a penalty after Chelsea defender Jon Russel had so blatantly brought down the advancing Shashoua in the Tottenham penalty area without getting anything on the ball. Chelsea were struggling to play as Spurs continued to dominate the game, I was surprised at how much time Chelsea were allowing our players on the ball. After having dominated the last ten or so minutes of the game Spurs had come close to extending their lead on more then one occasion. After Shashoua had passed the ball to Bowden the midfield craftsman played a clever through ball which Patterson had raced to meet down the right hand side of the penalty area. However, Karlo Ziger had read the situation well and came rushing out before doing just about enough to palm the ball away from the feet of the darting Patterson. One player who had been really threatening for Spurs in the early stages of the game was Dilan Markanday, and the speedy winger created a good chance for Maghoma.

After sprinting down the right wing, the strong winger cut inside onto his left before running across the face of the penalty area and laying the ball of to Maghoma in a central area. However, Maghoma’s first time curling effort was comfortably saved by Ziger in the Chelsea goal. The tigerish Jamie Bowden made a crucial interception shortly afterwards to win the ball off of Armando Broja on the edge of the Tottenham penalty area. And the same player let fly at the other end only a couple of moments later. Bowden’s deflected low drive from the edge of the penalty area was however, gathered by the Croatian goalkeeper Karlo Ziger. Spurs were hogging possession and were looking so composed on the ball as they built out from the back. I spotted a certain red card which the Spurs players didn’t seem to protest after the high pressing skipper Shashoua had his shirt tugged by Chelsea defender Clinton Mola just as he was about to latch onto a poorly hit back pass to the Chelsea goalkeeper, he was the last man. The linesman on the near side should have picked up on this as he had such a clear view of it. Chelsea’s Henry had a deflected effort at goal go out for a corner kick, whilst Jon Russell lashed over from range as Spurs continued to control the game much to Chelsea’s frustration. The Tottenham goalkeeper Joshua Oluwayemi had yet to make a save. The so far solid Maximus Tainio made an excellent challenge on Nunn to prevent a Chelsea break down the left hand side. Matt Wells’s superb Tottenham side were pressing the Chelsea defenders into making mistakes and their intricate attacking football had completely unsettled Alan Myers side during the first half, as Spurs went into the break a goal to the good after a superb first half performance. However, they could easily have been 3-0 up.

Chelsea got the second half underway as Spurs looked to consolidate on their slender one goal advantage. The half had barely started and the resurgent were already putting our defence under extreme pressure. Wells side had been caught out down the right hand side as the potent Armando Broja had been allowed to sprint down the wing unchallenged, before squaring the ball to Ballo inside the penalty area. With the goal gaping Ballo decided to let the ball roll through his legs and onto Marcel Lewis who picked it up from about nine yards out from the goal. Everybody was expecting the net to bulge as the unbalanced Oluwayemi attempted to get back into the centre of the goal. However, the blues midfielders powerfully struck effort was somehow blocked on the line by the sliding Malachi Walcott. It was the most heroic block you’ll ever see, as the young English defender popped up out of nowhere to make a goal saving block on the line. Had that have been Vertonghen or Sanchez the whole world would be talking about it for weeks on end. Clearly spurred on the blues had upped their tempo and were out to test Oluwayemi in the Tottenham goal. And Myers side came close to drawing level again a couple of moments later. Marcel Lewis’s diagonal pass to Chelsea’s George Nunn was picked up the by the centre forward down the right side of the penalty. However, the former Crewe schoolboys powerful effort was stopped by Oluwayemi who saved it at his near post. The central defensive partnership of Walcott and Binks were really being forced into the action. And England youth international Malachi Walcott was everywhere across the backline. The 16 year old made an incredible sliding challenge on Broja on the edge of the penalty area. Clinton Mola let fly from range shortly afterwards forcing another good stop out of Oluwayemi, as Binks and Walcott continued to save Spurs.

Ball playing centre half Luis Binks made an excellent challenge on Thierno Ballo to break up a dangerous Chelsea attack. And at the other end Phoenix Patterson had an excellently worked goal ruled out for offside much to Spurs’ annoyance. Captain Armando Shashoua immediately went over to the linesman on the near side to question his decision which I feel was an incredibly tight one to say the least. Chelsea continued to be the far better attacking team in this half, Walcott hit a clearance out to Marcel Lewis on the edge of the Tottenham box. Thankfully the midfielders powerful low effort flew wide of Oluwayemi’s left hand post. A couple of moments later Spurs had to deal with Lewis’s dangerous free kick after the midfielder whipped the ball into the penalty area. Picking out Jack Wakely at the back post the Chelsea fullbacks header was well cleared out by the alert Bowden. A big 20 minutes remained as Spurs tried desperately hard to cling onto their narrow lead. Oluwayemi was certainly making up for his lack of activity in the first half, the Tottenham goalkeeper produced an incredible save when he stopped Lewis’s powerful effort with a diving save. Lewis had the ball laid off to him on the edge of the penalty area by Henry Lawrence. However, Spurs almost caught Chelsea out at the other end after launching a promising counter attack straight from Oluwayemi’s quick throw to Markanday out on the right. The skilful winger launched the ball up to Patterson who darted through the middle before spotting the run of Bennett out on the left and shifting the ball to the forward whose quick fire effort was blocked by a Chelsea defender. However, Bennett’s miss wasn’t to matter as only a couple of moments later Spurs doubled their advantage to essentially put the game to bed. After receiving Maghoma’s pass Bennett embarked on a jinking run to beat his man down the left side of the penalty. The tricky forward squared the ball to Patterson whose effort was stopped by the diving Ziger who could only palm it into the path of the onrushing Shashoua who was there to just drive the ball home from close range, at the far post, 2-0.

Spurs made their first tactical change of the game shortly afterwards as Wells bolstered the Tottenham defence, by bringing on Lyons-Foster for Tainio as Spurs reverted to a back three for the remaining 15 or so minutes of the game. And shortly after the young centre half’s introduction to the game there was a melee involving both sets of players. It occurred after Lyons-Foster had conceded a free kick out on the left wing after a foul on Lewis. After just kicking the ball away the Chelsea midfielder snapped and unwisely threw the Tottenham defender to the floor. Lyons-Foster reacted by pulling the Chelsea defender by the scruff of the neck which for a moment looked like the famous Mackay on Bremner photograph. Anyhow, after a bit of handbags between both sets of players the referee booked both Lyons-Foster and Lewis. It was shaping into a proper London derby and rightly so! Chelsea could easily have pulled a goal back when Ballo was allowed to sprint into the middle of the penalty area, unchallenged before dragging the ball across Oluwayemi’s goal at the final moment. The flawless Luis Binks then made an impressive clearance at the near post to clear Ballo’s menacing cross before Nunn dragged the ball wide of the Spurs goal a couple of moments later, as Chelsea continued to push for a late goal. The skilful Markanday had won a free kick in a promising position for Spurs at the other end. Harvey White’s resulting effort around the Chelsea wall was well saved by the diving Ziger. Chelsea head coach Alan Myers could be seen frantically urging his players on as we reached the final stages of the game. Wells introduced Enock Asante in the place of Patterson as Spurs continued to move the ball around the pitch well. Lyons-Foster made a vital clearance to get to the ball before the racing Lewis out on the right wing. The ever threatening Maghoma then forced a good save out of Ziger at the other end after meeting Markanday’s pass on the edge of the box.

The effective Lyons-Foster was helping to keep Spurs’ clean sheet intact as he got a vital head on the ball to divert Clark’s dangerous cross. There was a late flurry of action at both ends of the pitch as we entered stoppage time. Maghoma hit an effort well wide from range whilst Chelsea came close to pulling a goal back. After the newly introduced Lewis Bate fed the ball into Nunn inside the penalty area, the forward squared it for Ballo who found himself one on one with Oluwayemi. However, Lyons-Foster produced the most incredible piece of defending as he bolted towards Ballo before making an incredible sliding challenge as Oluwayemi smothered the loose ball. It was the most incredible and complete performance from Matt Wells’s side on Saturday morning and it just goes to show that Spurs can challenge for the title this season. I was extremely proud of how mature a performance it was from our lads as they continued their 100% start to the new season. Next up for Matt Wells side is a trip to the south coast as they face Southampton next Saturday morning at their Staplewood training ground. I shall be reporting on that game.

Player reviews: – Joshua Oluwayemi: It was a really impressive performance from the 17 year old goalkeeper on only his fourth appearance at this level. After a very quiet first half, Oluwayemi was called into action in the second half and remained busy throughout the half. Making a string of important saves including a terrific diving save to superbly deny Marcel Lewis’s powerful effort from the edge of the penalty, Oluwayemi had an excellent half. The 17 year old’s distribution was good and he was very cool and composed on the ball, almost Neuer-esque.
– Maximus Tainio: Another player who put in an excellent performance, the tenacious young Finn who has just been called up for Finland’s under 19 side, put in a really solid performance against Chelsea at right back. He protected that side of the pitch well from the potent Armando Broja. Making some excellent challenges and interceptions, the alert Tainio also made some promising attacking forays down the right wing. He has really cemented his place in the team.
– Malachi Walcott: My motm, see below.
– Luis Binks: It was such a tough decision between Binks and Walcott as to who I was going to give man of the match to. The English ball playing centre half who turns 17 next week was incredible against the blues. Flawless throughout the game he read the game so very well and defended with aplomb. Making many important sliding challenges and well timed interceptions, in and around the danger zone. Binks was dominant in the air and his lovely diagonal passes helped to contribute to the Spurs attack. He has taken to under 18 football so very well so far and I’m not surprised in the slightest, he is a real leader. And I would surprised if he wasn’t included in the England under 17’s squad for the next international break.
– Harvey White: White has certainly proved his versatility during this early stage of the season. The Maidstone born midfielder played at left back for the visit of Chelsea on Saturday. And once again he put in a really impressive and commanding performance against Chelsea’s right winger Henry Lawrence. White covered for other players a lot whilst defending tightly down that side of the pitch. He was incredibly impressive once again considering he wasn’t playing in his natural position of cdm.
– Jamie Bowden: A defensive rock in the centre of midfield, Bowden did what he does best and that is recycling possession and breaking up play, which he did so effectively once again. His passing was slick and accurate as always but I was particularly impressed with the way in which he served as a barrier to the defence and broke up play so decisively.
– Armando Shashoua: A leader of men in the centre of the park, the impressive Shashoua retained the captains armband for our London derby with Chelsea. He combined defence with attack, covering more of the pitch then anybody else as he kept the ball moving in the middle of the park. He was skilful and brave, adventurous also as he showed the tactical nous to peel off of the Chelsea defenders and make good runs into the danger zone. He was also committed and was very much a ball winning midfielder as he helped Bowden to dominate that part of the pitch. The goalscorer of our second goal which he showed great awareness to convert in the first place. Shashoua lead by example and I was incredibly impressed with how assertive he was at dealing with certain situations. I think he’d do an excellent job for Wayne Burnett’s development side!
– Dilan Markanday: The winger who only turned 17 this month put in another electric performance down the right. He was hard working and extremely strong on the ball. Causing the Chelsea defence with a whole host of problems with his zooming runs down the flank. Markanday mixed it up by cutting inside a lot and going on some promising runs through the middle. He was on of our main creative outlets.
– Paris Maghoma: Playing as a number ten for the visit of Chelsea, young Paris Maghoma put in a really effective role in the cam position. Creative and menacing as he traveled through the middle. Maghoma made some really intelligent runs through the middle and was able to create good pockets of space for himself in and around the danger zone. The timing of his run for our opening goal was superb as too was the way in which he just calmly shimmied away from the Chelsea goalkeeper before cooly slotting home. It was Zidane-esque. That’s two goals from two games for Maghoma this season, I hope that he’ll start for the under 23’s against Arsenal on Saturday as he is more then ready to make that permanent step up.
– Phoenix Patterson: Another major creative outlet for Spurs, Patterson put in a good shift out on the left wing. Subtly creative, Patterson danced his way around Chelsea full back Clark down that side of the pitch and managed to get into some good positions. His goal which was ruled out for offside in the second half should have stood!
– J’Neil Bennett: One of our best players on the day picking up one assist, the ridiculously quick forward started up top for the second consecutive game in a row after his heroics against Swansea the previous Saturday. The lightening quick forward caused havoc for the Chelsea defence, he was direct and powerful but hugely intricate and menacing with his mesmeric skill in the final third. Hardworking and good at tracking back, Bennett would often drift out to the left hand side and this allowed Maghoma to get into better positions around the penalty area. He gave James Clark a torrid time down that flank and tore him to shreds with his lightening quick pace and fine balance. I would love to see him start on the left wing against Arsenal on Friday, our under 23’s could desperately do with having him in the side. Especially with the width that there is at the Emirates stadium.
– Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: A short but lively fifteen cameo from the young defender on Saturday. Slotting into a back three, Lyons-Foster made three vital pieces of defending during his time on the pitch and he read the game so well. His incredible last ditch challenge on Ballo inside the Tottenham penalty area was a work of art.
– Enock Asante: N/A.

My man of the match: Malachi Walcott. Ever present across the backline on only his fourth appearance at the this level, the 16 year old centre half put in a heroic performance against Chelsea. Walcott was superb against Chelsea as he put in the complete defensive performance alongside his teammate Luis Binks. The England youth international won everything in the air and made sure that he defended tightly up against the threatening George Nunn. He read the game well and above all else he was committed. Making many excellent sliding challenges, blocks and clearances Walcott showed his class both on and off the ball. And that incredible goal line block he made in the first half was just outstanding in every respect.

Spurs: Oluwayemi, Tainio (Lyons-Foster 74), White, Bowden, Walcott, Binks, Markanday, A Shashoua (c), Bennett, Maghoma, Patterson (Asante 84).

Substitutes (not used): Kurylowicz, Okedina, Mukendi.

Chelsea: Karlo Ziger; James Clark, Jack Wakely, Pierre Ekwah Elimby, Clinton Mola; Jon Russell (Lewis Bate 73), Henry Lawrence, Marcel Lewis, Thierno Ballo; George Nunn, Armando Broja (Dion Rankine 70)

Substitutes (not use) Dynel Simeu, Jake Askew, Jordan Aina.

Spurs under 18’s statistics 2018/19:

Goals scored: J’Neil Bennett – 4
Troy Parrott – 2
Paris Maghoma – 2
Dennis Cirkin – 2
Luis Binks – 1
Brooklyn Lyons-Foster – 1
Armando Shashoua – 1

Assists: Harvey White – 4
Armando Shashoua – 3
Phoenix Patterson – 2
Paris Maghoma – 1
Jamie Bowden – 1
Maurizio Pochettino – 1
J’Neil Bennett -1

Clean sheets: Joshua Oluwayemi – 1

Spurs under 18’s versus Chelsea: (match preview)

Spurs under 18’s versus Chelsea: (match preview)

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After a great start to the new season with two wins from their opening two league games under new head coach Matt Wells. Spurs will be hoping to keep up their 100% record when reigning champions Chelsea come to Hotspur Way on Saturday morning. Our old nemesis Chelsea have gone under a period of transition over the summer. The highly regarded Jody Morris left his role as the blues head coach to link up with Frank Lampard at Derby. In addition Chelsea lost talented centre half Jonathan Panzo to French club Monaco, with a whole host of talented players from that age group having made the step up to the blues development side. One could argue that this new crop of players won’t continue the trend of dominating youth football at least on the domestic stage. Chelsea won the premier league south last season, including the national final after they beat northern winners Manchester United. The blues also won the inaugural edition of the premier league cup (against us!) and the FA youth cup to cap off another season of domination from the west London club on the domestic stage. You know what you’re going to get when you play Chelsea and that is possession based attacking football. Chelsea under 18’s last league game against Leicester City, for example saw them have a remarkable 73% of the possession. During our four meetings with the blues last season there was a total of 15 goals scored as we contested some thrilling matches with our London rivals. They knocked us out of the FA youth cup and defeated us 2-0 in the final of the premier league cup. However, they didn’t manage to beat us in the league, and Spurs managed to beat Chelsea at Cobham 3-0. And in doing so became the first team to beat the blues under 18 side at their training ground in over three years.

The players Chelsea head coach Alan Myers has to choose from ahead of Saturdays game is quite frankly ridiculous. He could choose from any of the following: Hudson-Odoi, Ampadu and Gilmour. However, even if Chelsea do field that trio on Saturday even though I highly doubt they will, we can still easily match their quality. Our sparkling high intensity attacking football could beat any youth team in Europe on their day. And if Wells goes with a strong lineup for the London derby on Saturday then we’ll have a fighting chance of getting one over on our old rivals. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the talented Brooklyn Lyons-Foster start in defence, with Paris Maghoma and Jamie Bowden starting in midfield and Troy Parrott starting up top. Parrott was one wonder kid who Chelsea weren’t able to sign! It should be an enthralling game on Saturday morning and one in which should provide our young players (especially our first years) with a great experience. I wish our lads all the very best of luck ahead of this Saturday’s league game. My in-depth match report will be out on Sunday evening.

My predicted lineup: (4-3-3) De Bie (OG), Statham, Lyons-Foster (c), Binks, Cirkin, Bowden, A.Shashoua, Maghoma, Markanday, Parrott, Bennett.

Subs from: Oluwayemi, Okedina, White, Mukendi, Asante.

OG* = Overage goalkeeper.

Doubtful: Rodel Richards and Rayan Clarke.

Injured/unavailable: None (as far as I am aware).

Previous meeting: Spurs 3-0.

My score prediction: Spurs 3-2.

My one to watch: Signed from Crewe Alexandra this summer for a fee believed to be around £300,000, centre forward George Nunn (16) attracted the attention of a whole host of top clubs including Spurs who were rumoured to have been in for him. The clinical finisher has already scored one goal from the two games that he has played for Chelsea’s under 18 side this season, that is despite the fact that he has been playing out wide. I look forward to seeing him in action, he is very highly rated.

Spurs under 18’s 6-4 Brighton: (match report)

Spurs under 18’s 6-4 Brighton: (match report)

526FD402-88EF-4DA6-A74E-6A36C5B69A06Our under 18’s got the new season underway with a bang on Saturday morning as they managed to beat Brighton 6-4 in their opening league game of the new season, in what was one of the most pulsating games of football you’ll ever see. Played on a gloriously sunny day at Hotspur Way, new head coach Matt Wells took charge of the under 18’s for the first time in domestic competition as Spurs hosted the seagulls. With it being the first game of the season it was always going to be interesting to see which new first year scholars would link up with the second years. Wells opted to go for the 3-3-3-1 formation with Jonathan De Bie (the skipper) playing in goal as an overage goalkeeper whilst two first years Luis Binks and Harvey White formed a back three alongside Tainio. In front of them stood the lively trio of Paris Maghoma, Armando Shashoua (more advanced) and Jamie Bowden. Whilst wide men J’Neil Bennett and Dilan Markanday played on the flanks with Phoenix Patterson playing as a number 10 behind Troy Parrott who lead the Tottenham line on only his fourth appearance at this level. It was a pulsating game of football with so many twists and turns. After a bright start Wells side fell behind against the run of play to Jayden Onen’s goal in the ninth minute of proceedings. Despite enjoying the bulk of possession Tottenham’s back three was being punished on the counter attack, and the seagulls doubled their lead through Onen less than 20 minutes later as the youngster bagged his second of the game. Matt Wells’ side responded through defender Luis Binks as he pulled a goal back for the young Lilywhites on 34 minutes. However, the seagulls took less then two minutes before restoring their two goal cushion through Stefan Vukoje’s unstoppable strike.

But Spurs managed to respond once more and they finished the half in spectacular style as Troy Parrott’s quick fire brace on the stroke of half time, meant that the scores were level going into the second half. After a bit of a disjointed first half performance Wells side started the second half with a real intensity about their game and it caught Mark Beard’s seagulls by surprise. A spectacular solo goal from Paris Maghoma on 53 minutes saw Spurs go ahead for the first time in the game. From there the young Lilywhites controlled the game substitute Brooklyn Lyons-Foster came on to make it 5-3 for Spurs. Before the potent J’Neil Bennett scored a wonderful goal of his own to make it 6-3 a couple of moments later. Brighton did manage to pull a goal back through Onen who secured his hat-trick but Spurs continued to out play the visitors throughout the remainder of the game. Knocking the ball about for fun, Matt Wells’ side played some beautiful attacking football as they held onto the ball. On another day they could have hit ten! It was a superb start to the season for our under 18’s, they showed real character and resilience to not only bounce back from being two goals down. But also to totally change the game and carve open what had been a pretty solid Brighton defence. They played with a real panache about their game, they were unstoppable during that second half. Wells youthful side put in an excellent team performance and it was so enjoyable to experience it first hand.

The visitors got the game underway at a sun kissed Hotspur Way for our under 18’s first league game of the 2018/19 season. Wells’ side looked lively in the opening couple of minutes, none more so than Dilan Markanday who robbed the ball off of Tanimowo out on the right flank early on. The typically energetic forward sped towards the Brighton penalty area before having a pop at goal. His effort was well blocked by Clarke-Eden, a player who would go onto have a brilliant game for the seagulls. Spurs’ high energy start was beginning to cause a few problems for the Brighton defence. Fresh from his first team debut the previous Saturday, Jamie Bowden managed to pick out Parrott inside the box with a well weighted cross. But it was a difficult chance for the Dubliner to convert due to the angles he had to aim at, the 16 year old sent his header well wide of the goal. Matt Wells side continued their bright start to the game when Bennett embarked on a galavanting run down the left. The 16 year old ran at the Brighton fullback, beating two defenders in the process as he continued towards the edge of the Brighton box, before forcing a decent stop out of Bentley with a low effort at goal. The young Lilywhites had started the game really well, they were moving the ball around with pace and were forcing the Brighton defenders into making mistakes due to their high pressing. They did however, struggle to carve through the very much defensive minded opposition who were sitting deep a lot of the time. A sloppy pass from Tainio presented Mark Beard’s side with their first real chance of the game but first year scholar Luis Binks was on hand to make a crucial interception on the edge of the box to win the ball off of Onen. And only a couple of minutes later Beard’s side took a surprise lead courtesy of a strike from the very same player. Totally stunned by the Brighton front lie we had been caught on the counter. Ayo Tanimowo saw a weakness down our left hand side.

The fullback surged forwards to the byline before whipping the ball into the danger zone. Not picked up by White or Binks inside the penalty area, Tanimowo’s cross was met by Jayden Onen who had a headed attempt brilliantly saved by De Bie from close range. Fortunately the ball spilled back out to the Brighton forward who managed to bundle the ball home from less then four yards out, 0-1. Brighton had taken the lead against the run of play. After the seagulls had taken a surprise lead in only the ninth minute of the game, the match began to develop into an end to and game as we tried to draw level. The impressive Paris Maghoma fired over from long range whilst his midfield partner Jamie Bowden was given a warning by the referee only a couple of minutes later. Bowden was forced into making a cynical foul to prevent yet another dangerous Brighton counter attack. The lively Markanday had an effort blocked by the alert Clarke-Eden whilst Marc Leonard sliced a long range effort wide, at the other end. It was a becoming an increasingly frustrating time for Matt Wells youngsters who looked vulnerable whenever they had to deal with a Brighton attack. After being picked out by Jayden Onen inside the Tottenham penalty area, Danny Cashman tried to test De Bie with a powerful low effort which was blocked by White. However, Cashman had been allowed far too much room inside the Tottenham penalty area. The potent J’Neil Bennett who was often finding himself in a lot of space out on the left wing, threatened the Brighton defence when he tricked his way into the box. Attempting to get past Shihab the Tottenham winger fired over from an acute angle. Spurs were dealt another blow on 25 minutes when Jayden Onen managed to net his and Brighton’s second goal of the game. A defence splitting through ball from Vukotje had managed to set Onen racing through on goal down the right hand side.

The forward battled it out with Harvey White as he powered his way into the danger zone before tucking the ball into the far left hand corner of De Bie’s goal, wrapping his foot around the ball as he did so, 0-2. Once again Matt Wells side were caught out on the break. The young Spurs lads knew that thy had to respond before halftime. A scuffed effort by Patterson from long range was easily gathered by the Brighton goalkeeper George Bentley. Whilst the continuously dangerous looking Bennett had a venomous shot blocked by Clarke-Eden a couple of moments later. The ball came out to Patterson on the edge of the box, the playmaker attempted to pick out Parrott inside the area but the Irishman’s header towards goal was deflected over the crossbar and out for a corner kick (Spurs had 22 corners in the game!). The 16 year old was working incredibly hard up top up and was often tracking back and getting stuck in, in the centre of the park. Brighton skipper Danny Cashman claimed a penalty kick after being brought down by White inside the Tottenham box. And Wells’ side had the right to claim one themselves after some pulling from Clarke-Eden was spotted at the other end only a couple of minutes later. J’Neil Bennett had went to meet Harvey White’s inviting cross at the back post, the wide man contested the ball with Clarke-Eden but could be seen having the bottom of his shirt pulled as he missed out on making any contact with the ball. However, Spurs managed to pull an important goal back through Luis Binks in the 34th minute. After Phoenix Patterson had whipped a menacing cross into the danger zone the centre half who somehow found himself so high up pitch, was at the back post to meet the ball. His powerful header was saved by Bentley and a defender quickly cleared the ball to safety. Everybody in the crowd suspected nothing of it (including the players) until the linesman on the far sided deemed it to have crossed the line, 1-2.

After pulling a somewhat fortuitous goal back Wells side looked to reestablish their control on the game. However, a little under two minutes later the seagulls regained their two goal cushion courtesy of an unstoppable strike from Vukotje. After receiving a crisp pass from Onen around 25 yards out from goal the Brighton winger continued unchallenged through the middle, before firing an effort at goal from the edge of the penalty area. His powerful swerving effort crashed onto the underside of De Bie’s crossbar before then bouncing off the line and into up the roof of De Bie’s goal. The wingers unstoppable strike gave the Belgian no time to react, 1-3. Spurs responded straight from the restart through Jamie Bowden who fired an effort narrowly over from range. Trying desperately hard to get themselves back into the game, Spurs were attacking the Brighton defence as if the game was about to end, towards the closing stages of the half. Troy Parrott should have been awarded a stonewall penalty after pouncing on a loose ball on the edge of the penalty area. Surging into the box the centre forward was taken clean out by Shihab who went sliding in totally missing the ball in the process. Parrott was stunned and exclaimed ’ how? ’ to the referee Shaun Barry. Parrott’s bemusement was soon turned to joy after he pulled a goal back for Spurs in the 42nd minute. After some lovely dribbling from the tireless Shashoua on the edge of the penalty area, the midfielder passed the ball to Maghoma who charged into the penalty area showing good feet as he did so. After being crowded out by green shirts inside the box the midfielder took a heavy touch which rolled right on through to the alert Parrott who swept home from close range, into the bottom left hand corner of the goal, 2-3. After racing back to the halfway line Spurs continued to look for an equaliser as we entered stoppage time. After really piling on the pressure Matt Wells side came desperately close to getting an equaliser. When Maghoma’s attempted cross from the left wing came rattling off of the top of Bentley’s left hand post. The ball was eventually worked out to Harvey White who took no time in whipping a cross into the danger zone.

Lurking in the middle of the goal was Parrott who managed to just glance his header past Bentley to make it 3-3, in what was the final action of an extraordinary first half. Spurs got the game back underway as Matt Wells side looked to continue the second half where they left off the first. It was clear from the opening couple of minutes of the half that Spurs were showing some ridiculously high energy levels as they moved the ball about in the final third. J’Neil Bennett had Spurs’ first chance of the half after he went on an attacking foray down the left. The tricky wide man then cut inside onto his right before firing an effort at goal. His powerful attempt was deflected off of a Brighton defender inside the box, this caused a bit of panic amongst their defence as they tried desperately hard to clear the ball before it rolled out to Markanday at the back post. Spurs were dominating possession and were testing the visitors with numerous attacking forays. One player who was playing a much more advanced role in this half was Paris Maghoma. After whipping a menacing cross into the box which only just evaded Dilan Markanday at the back post. The England youth international produced a moment of sheer genius to put Spurs ahead for the first time in the game only a couple of moments later. Maghoma’s incredible solo goal started after he received a pass some 25 yards out from goal. The 17 year old then managed to work his way around two Brighton defenders with the most sublime pieces of skill. Like peak Paul Pogba he continued to stride towards the penalty area evading more Brighton defenders before unleashing a rocket of a shot from the edge of the box. Which slammed high into the centre of the goal, leaving George Bentley rooted to his spot, 4-3! Spurs were now on top and their wonderful high intensity, attacking football was making the seagulls struggle to keep up. The hardworking Patterson saw his low effort from 20 yards out saved by the feet of the Brighton goalkeeper.

Before a well worked short corner almost made it 5-3 to the Lilywhites. After Shashoua decided to take the corner kick short to Patterson who then rolled the ball out to Bowden, the midfielders first time strike was blocked by Clarke-Eden. The ball came back out to Patterson who picked Parrott out in the centre of the penalty area. The centre forward controlled the ball before trying to sort his feet out whilst being hounded by two Brighton defenders. Parrott ignored Maghoma who was in space to his left and instead sent the ball trickling wide of the left post. Spurs continued to pepper the Brighton goal when Shashoua embarked on an excellent surging run towards goal. The midfielder squared the ball for Markanday in the centre of the box. Markanday’s effort was blocked brilliantly by Clarke-Eden who once again had put his body on the line. Spurs made their first substitution shortly afterwards as centre half Brooklyn Lyons-Foster entered the fold in place of Phoenix Patterson. Spurs were showing no signs of lowering their tempo. J’Neil Bennett curled a deflected effort narrowly over from range before Spurs got that all important fifth goal. Armando Shashoua passed the ball to Harvey White out on the right wing, the makeshift centre half sent another peach of a cross inside the danger zone. Amongst a sea of bodies the newly introduced Lyons-Foster rose to guide the ball into the far corner of Bentley’s goal, as it managed to creep in, 5-3. At times mesmeric with his wide ranging skillset and galavanting runs down the left wing, J’Neil Bennett deserved a goal. And after seeing his shot blocked by Clarke-Eden only a couple of moments later, the Tottenham winger put the icing on the cake with a spectacular sixth goal for Spurs on 63 minutes. After receiving a pass from Shashoua some 25 yards out from goal, Bennett curled a wonderful effort inside the top right hand corner of Bentley’s goal sparking scenes of elation from the Tottenham players, 6-3.

Spurs’ wonderful intricate attacking football had played the seagulls off the park and they weren’t done yet! Keen to get on the scoresheet himself Jamie Bowden had a promising effort blocked by Tanimowo. Whilst the impressive Luis Binks managed to make an important block to thwart Onen’s effort at the other end. However, an absurd decision from the referee on 68 minutes allowed Brighton to pull a goal back through Onen, who secured his hat-trick. Lyons-Foster was clearly tripped from behind by Onen as he attempted to play the ball out from the back all the players paused presuming a free kick has been awarded. But to everyone’s surprise the referee waived play on as Onen raced inside the penalty area, De Bie came rushing off of his line and made a good stop to deny the Brighton forward. However, the ball rolled back out to Onen on the edge of the penalty area and he made no mistakes this time round as he calmly slotted into the back of the net, 6-4. However, this didn’t affect Spurs in the slightest they continued to dominate possession and were knocking the ball around for fun. Maghoma had a shot blocked by Roberts before Parrott forced an easy stop out of Bentley after getting on the end of Bowden’s cross. The newly introduced Mukendi made a brilliant crunching challenge which brought rapturous applause from the spectators, as Spurs continued to press Brighton ridiculously high up the pitch. Continuing to create, Harvey White could have had a hat-trick of assists had Binks have been able to convert his cross which was gathered by Bentley. Onen fired narrowly over at the other end before Binks made a magnificent block to deny the same player, as Brighton tried to get back into the game but it wasn’t working. Our lads almost hit seven when Bennett embarked on yet another promising run down the left hand side. Bennett’s run ended in him smashing the ball agonisingly across the face of the goal. The former QPR schoolboy went close again a couple of minutes later after powering his way down the wing he came across onto his right before firing a low effort a fraction wide of the Brighton goal.

Spurs continued to create a flurry of late chances, as the game began to draw to a close. A well worked move saw Bowden pass the ball to Maghoma the latter surged forwards before shifting the ball out to Bennett on the left side of the penalty area. Bennett turned his man before firing over, failing to register Maghoma who had created a good pocket of space on the edge of the penalty area. The final score Spurs 6-4 Brighton, a most extraordinary game of football on day one of the new season sees Matt Wells’ side pick up three points against a good Brighton team. It was a performance of great character and resilience from Spurs particularly in the second half where they put in an unstoppable attacking display. Up next for our under 18’s is a trip to South Wales where they will face Swansea at their Landore training centre, next Saturday morning.

Player reviews: – Jonathan De Bie: I must admit I was a little surprised to see the Belgian start against Brighton. The overage goalkeeper had a good game against the seagulls as he took the captains armband once again at this level. There was nothing he could of done to prevent any of Brighton’s goals, De Bie made some good saves throughout the game and put in a good strong performance. The 18 year old also ordered his defence well whenever they had to defend a set piece.
– Maximus Tainio: On the whole it was a decent performance from the young Finn who slotted into a back three for our win against Brighton on Saturday. Although he was caught out for pace on a coupe of occasions Tainio put in a strong and commanding performance before shifting out to his more natural position of right back towards the end of the game.
– Luis Binks: It was a memorable day for young Luis Binks, the England u17 international put in a really impressive display at centre half. Making many crucial interceptions and blocks, like Lyons-Foster Binks loves to play out from the back and he did so a lot against the seagulls. He showed good composure and made some nice forward passes. He topped it all of with his first goal at this level.
– Harvey White: A player who I am a big fan of, the cdm dropped back to form our incredibly young back three. Solid and composed throughout the game White put in a really strong defensive performance. However, it was his excellent crossing ability which won the plaudits against Brighton as he bagged two assists against the seagulls.
– Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: Really good cameo from the ball playing centre half. The 17 year old put in a strong performance and really bolstered our defence after coming on and didn’t put a foot wrong. Lyons-Foster also managed to score his first goal at this level!
– Dennis Cirkin: He looked solid during his 14 minutes on the field. Cirkin stayed deep.
– Jamie Bowden: The deepest of our midfield trio Bowden swept up well in the centre of the park. Asserting himself well on the game, Jamie really grew into the game and made many clever choices. He was particularly impressive during the second half where he got forward a lot more.
– Paris Maghoma: My motm, see below.
– Armando Shashoua: Like a bee buzzing around in the faces of the Brighton defenders. The technically brilliant midfielder was a thorn in Brighton’s side throughout the game, playing such a pivotal role in our win. His trademark pressing and constant bombardment of the Brighton defence forced them into making numerous errors during our 6-4 win. Not only that but the slick midfield technician recycled possession well, and initiated many moves in the final third with his crisp and accurate passing. The 17 year old was also very good on the ball, his dribbling really worked the Brighton defenders. It was an excellent performance from the 17 year old who managed to register two assists on game one of the new season. He was so key to Spurs breaking Brighton down.
– Dilan Markanday: Constantly getting into good pockets of space out on the right flank. Markanday who it’s worth remembering is still only 16, put in a really impressive performance. With his many weaving runs and lovely well weighted passes into the danger zone, he remained a threat throughout.
– Phoenix Patterson: The number 10 really took the game by the scruff of the neck and would go onto make a positive impression on the game. He was heavily involved in so many of our attacks, Patterson was tricky and astute. Often driving at the opposition, he was at the forefront of so many of our attacking forays. The 17 year old also managed to set up Luis Binks goal with a well weighted cross.
– Jeremie Mukendi: Mukendi looked promising during his late cameo as he embarked on a couple of fruitful runs down the right. His well timed crunching challenge shortly after coming on drew praise from the audience.
– J’Neil Bennett: A player who you’ll all know I’m a big fan of, the 16 year old left winger put in a superb performance against Brighton on Saturday. The Zaha like showman took players on for fun, galavanting down the left wing as if he was freestyler. However, Bennett was hugely productive throughout the game and created many chances from that left hand side. The trickster wrapped up a superb performance with a glorious goal from long range. He is going to be such an important player for Wells’ side this season.
– Troy Parrott: After spending the majority of pre-season away with our development side it was good to see the 16 year old centre forward back playing at this level. Extremely hard working throughout the entirety of the game, not only did Parrott press high he also involved himself much deeper in the pitch. Winning the ball in the centre of the park and driving forwards. Hugely deserving of his two goals of which were typical poachers finishes, Parrott had a great game all round and could even appear on the bench for our next under 23 game. It’s also worth mentioning that there was a scout from the FAI in attendance.

My man of the match: Paris Maghoma. Energetic, box to box and extremely influential to the way in which Spurs played, Paris Maghoma was hands down my man of the match yesterday. He did his role so well in the centre of midfield, like a young Paul Pogba he was effective at both ends of the pitch. In the first half he was much deeper and added real steel and tenacity to the side, bossing the central areas and dictating play. Maghoma also did well to set up Parrott for his first goal of the game. In the second half the 17 year old was quite simply unplayable, he got further up the pitch much more often. And was constantly linking up with the likes of Parrott and Bennett. The scorer of one of the most sumptuous goal I’ve ever seen at this level. Young Paris put in the complete midfield performance, his driving runs and multiple key passes helped us to unravel the Brighton defence. Another thing I noticed about his game was how often he was able to find himself in little pockets around the six yard box. A superb game for the teenager who I’m sure will be heavily involved with the development squad this season.

Spurs: De Bie (c), Tainio, Binks, Bowden, White, Maghoma, Markanday (Mukendi 73), A Shashoua (Cirkin 80), Parrott, Patterson (Lyons-Foster 59), Bennett. Substitute (not used): Oluwayemi, Walcott.

Referee: Shaun Barry.

Spurs under 18’s statistics 2018/19:

Goals scored: Troy Parrott – 2
Luis Binks – 1
Paris Maghoma – 1
Brooklyn Lyons-Foster – 1
J’Neil Bennett -1

Assists: Harvey White – 2
Armando Shashoua – 2
Phoenix Patterson -1
Paris Maghoma – 1

Spurs under 18’s versus Brighton: (match preview)

Spurs under 18’s versus Brighton: (match preview)

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After a long summer our under 18’s return to domestic action tomorrow when they host Brighton and Hove Albion at Hotspur Way (11:30 AM KO), in their first under 18 league game of the new 2018/19 season. It’s fair to say that it’s been an eventful summer of outgoings as far as the Tottenham academy is concerned. We’ve lost some of our most promising youth prospects this summer to overseas clubs with Keanan Bennetts, Reo Griffiths and Noni Madeuke all opting to try their luck on mainland Europe. Madeuke was one of our most promising under 16’s, a skilful midfielder the former Crystal Palace schoolboy was extremely highly rated at Spurs. That’s why it was a major loss for Spurs when he decided to join Dutch giants PSV earlier on this summer. Another high profile departure was that of our under 18’s head coach Scott Parker. Parker linked up with his former club Fulham where he is now a first team coach. Former youth team player and long time academy coach (former u23 assistant manager) Matt Wells has taken Parker’s place and will be in charge of the under 18’s for the 2018/19 campaign. Over the course of the domestic season Wells side will compete in the u18 premier league south, the u18 premier league cup which they made the final of last season, and the most prestigious competition of them all the FA youth cup. A lot of this seasons under 18’s will also get game time in the UEFA youth league over the course of the season, I presume Wells will be in charge for that as well. We’ve got another really exciting pool of players in the under 18’s this season, with ten first year scholars joining last seasons unusually large intake.

Matt Wells’ sides first opponents of the new season are Mark Beard’s Brighton. We contested two fiercely competitive games with the seagulls last season, including a nine goal thriller down on the south coast. Known for producing some exciting talents over the last five or so years Brighton’s current under 18 side boasts some impressive young players. Of which includes England u17 international Tareq Shihab, midfielder Teddy Hoare and the seagulls second top scorer last season, Dan Cashman. It will be a tough opener for the young Lilywhites and I’m intrigued to see what team Wells will pick. It will also be fascinating to see which first year scholars are included, I would suspect Irish prodigy Troy Parrott will lead the line after his pre-season involvement with the development side. I would also expect Dennis Cirkin to start at left back due to the lack of players we have in that position. However, I’m really looking forward to seeing the lads in action this season and reporting on my first under 18 game of the new season. I wish all of our players the very best of luck for the new campaign and I must say I will be astounded if anyone can match or even beat Reo Griffiths’ (now of Lyon) extremely impressive goal tally of 33 goals at this level last season! My in-depth match report of tomorrows opening game of the season will be published on Saturday night.

OAG* = Overage goalkeeper.

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Freeman (OAG*), Tainio, Lyons-Foster (c), Statham, Cirkin, Bowden, Patterson, Richards, A.Shashoua, Bennett, Parrott.

Subs from: Kurylowicz, Okedina, Cooper, Thorpe, Asante.

Doubtful: None (as far as I am aware).

Injured/unavailable: None (as far as I am aware).

Previous meeting: Spurs 6-3.

My score prediction: Spurs 2-1.

My one to watch: The seagulls 17 year old forward Dan Cashman, Brighton’s second top scorer with six goals last season. Cashman impressed me during both our encounters with Brighton last season.

ICYMI: https://superhotspur.com/2018/07/19/a-piece-on-spurs-new-first-year-scholars/