Spurs under 23’s versus Leyton Orient: (match preview)

(This photograph is from Tottenham Hotspur FC)

Our development side last played a proper game of football at a stadium back in March however, more than five months later they will return to playing when they take on Leyton Orient in a friendly match on Wednesday evening (kick off is at 7 pm). Scheduled to be played at Leyton Orient’s Breyer Group Stadium, the game will be known as the JE3 Cup in memory of former Spurs player and Leyton Orient manager Justin Edinburgh who sadly passed away last year. This JE3 cup match against a senior League Two side will provided Wayne Burnett’s side with a much needed competitive game of football having only returned to group training fairly recently. Burnett’s side could be a fairly experienced for this game, with Jack Roles, Anthony Georgiou, Shilow Tracey, George Marsh and Kazaiah Sterling all pictured training with the development side last week after being out on loan last season. Leyton Orient have warmed up for Wednesday’s game by defeating Reading’s under 23 side 2-0 on Saturday. Some of the ’ O’s ’ players to look out for include experienced 38 year old left winger Jobi McAnuff, centre forwards Lee Angol (ex Spurs) and Ruel Sotiriou, central midfielder Josh Wright and highly rated centre back Dan Happe. This will be a tough first test of pre-season for Burnett’s side however, the young Spurs lads will be excited to return to the pitch after so long out. This should be a competitive game despite it being a friendly as this could be an experienced side that Wayne Burnett fields. Also all of our development side players will be hoping to impress and catch the eye of the Tottenham coaches, with Spurs’ first team playing Ipswich Town in a friendly at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium this Saturday. Obviously the game is being played behind closed doors with no media being let in however, I will be doing a report of the game as Leyton Orient will be streaming the game on their official You Tube channel which is great!

In other news our under 18’s were beaten 4-2 by Oxford United in a friendly at Hotspur Way on Tuesday. Max Robson and Romaine Mundle got our goals.

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) De Bie, Marsh (c), Lyons-Foster, Skinner, Okedina, Bowden, Thorpe, Tracey, Roles, Markanday, Sterling.

Subs from: Oluwayemi, Muir, Cesay, Devine, Bennett, Pochettino, Richards, Etete.

Injured/unavailable: N/A.

Doubtful: Malachi Fagan-Walcott.

Previous meeting: N/A.

My score prediction: 2-2

My one to watch: Experienced left winger/midfielder Jobi McAnuff could be a danger man for Spurs down that left hand side. Especially if McAnuff is looking to whip crosses into the Tottenham penalty area. His experience could be key to winning Leyton Orient the game.

Farewell and good luck Armando Shashoua:

(This photograph is from Tottenham Hotspur FC).

Tottenham Hotspur development side player Armando Shashoua yesterday departed the club to join Spanish third tier side Atlético Baleares in a permanent deal. The 19 year old attacking midfielder who had been at Spurs along with his older brother Samuel (now of C.D. Tenerife) since a young age, was a player that I’d always rated very highly. A highly technical player who is adept at playing in central midfield or higher up as a CAM, a position which he played in for the majority of last season, Shashoua chipped in with five goals and three assists for our development side last season from 14 appearances. West London born but eligible to represent Spain, Venezuela, Egypt and America at international level, Shashoua made his debut for Spurs’ under 18 side as a schoolboy way back in February of 2017. During the following 2017/18 campaign he was mostly a mainstay in Scott Parker’s under 18 side, putting in many impressive performances in central midfield and in the number ten position. However, it was during the 2018/19 season when Armando really flourished, this time as captain of our extremely talented under 18 side. Putting in consistently excellent performances week in week out, Shashoua captained the side with aplomb, constantly motivating and encouraging his teammates during matches. The 19 year olds tremendous work ethic and tireless work off the ball instilled a real belief in the side that we could go on and win the U18 Premier League South. Unfortunately we didn’t win the league or any of the other domestic cups that were on offer that season however, the team more than did the club proud. After contributing double figures for assists and scoring a good number of important goals during the 2018/19 season Armando also stepped up to play for our under 19’s and 23’s on a handful of occasions.

Continuing to develop and very rarely getting injured despite his tigerish style of play, the Londoner started pre-season of the 2019/20 campaign by putting in some impressive performances in domestic fixtures, as well as impressing at the Tournoi Europeen out in France. However, it was during Shashoua’s first proper season of playing development side/under 23 football that he really took to that level of youth football like a duck to water. The talented teenager who is a nice lad off the pitch was directly involved in eight goals from 14 competitive appearances for Wayne Burnett’s side, and he wasn’t at all fazed by the step up in physicality of the league despite his small frame and size. The gifted attack minded midfielder single-handedly won our under 23’s games against the likes of Everton and Wolverhampton Wanderers, and once again his leadership skills, intelligence and footballing maturity really stood out on the pitch. The former Harrow School pupil was probably our best attacking player for our under 23’s last season, and without him we would have found it difficult to avoid relegation to the PL2’s Second Division. A player who I was going to include in an article that I’m currently writing about five young Spurs academy players that I’m hoping to see in action for the first team this pre-season, Armando along with his older brother Samuel were two players that I really thought would make at least one competitive first team appearance for Spurs. However, as we all know nothing is certain in football, but Armando’s service to Spurs at youth level over the years has been tremendous. A similar type of player to Brighton and Hove Albion’s attack minded midfielder Steven Alzate, Shashoua has lovely balance and a great low centre of gravity.

A graceful player who is capable of gliding past opponents, Armando is a forward passer of the ball who has a lovely weight of pass. Also an unselfish and highly energetic player, the footballer who spent half of last season on loan at Atlético Baleares (he made four competitive appearances in total) can dribble with the ball well and he possesses a fair amount of pace however, it is his impeccable positional play which makes him such a potent goal threat. I’ve got a lot of good memories of watching Armando play for the under 18’s, 19’s and development side over the years, and to be quite honest I am sad to see him leave. For me I did see him going onto play for our first team however, difficult that can be to achieve. Although for me the teenager is a proper Tottenham player who has the class to prove it but also that top quality work ethic too. Shashoua joins an Atlético Baleares side who have won their league the last two seasons but have subsequently failed to gain promotion to the second tier of Spanish football (they have to go through a play off system after winning the league). Given time I think that Armando will settle really well to life in Mallorca and although it is a very physical league (he is deceptively strong) Armando’s skillset and technical ability will cause real problems for his opponents. Like Samuel I am sure that Armando will go onto have a long and successful career in the game, and I believe that he is more than capable of playing in one of the worlds best leagues at some point in the future. Atlético Baleares must be one of the favourites to be promoted to the second tier next season and that would be so good for Armando’s development in the game. This is the end of an era for the Shashoua brothers at Spurs however, it is only the very start of their careers in the game. Farewell and good luck young Armando Shashoua.

My piece on promising and versatile young Spurs development side defender Jubril Okedina:

(This photograph is from Tottenham Hotspur FC)

A consistent, hardworking and reliable player for Tottenham Hotspur’s development side, versatile defender Jubril Adesope Okedina (19) has enjoyed two fine seasons of development at Spurs after enduring an injury hit campaign during his first season with the club full time. The former Beths Grammar School pupil who was born and raised in Woolwich, South London is a centre half (RCB) by trade however, since the 2018/19 campaign he has predominantly played as a right back, a position in which he has settled down nicely in. In the following piece I shall be giving Spurs fans who may not have seen Jubril Okedina play an understanding of what type of player he is, and what his traits and attributes are as a player. Having been at Spurs since a young age and risen up the various youth ranks at the club, Okedina made his competitive debut for Spurs’ under 18 side in a PL South fixture against Aston Villa in the February of 2017. Spurs fielded a very young side for that fixture due to having an important FA Youth semifinal tie against Chelsea soon afterwards. Okedina completed the entirety of the 2-1 defeat to the ‘ Villains ‘ at their Bodymoor Heath training, he played at centre half and did a fine job as he looked comfortable throughout the game. During the summer of 2017 Jubril Okedina signed scholarship forms with Spurs in time for the new 2017/18 campaign. However, for the young defender it was to be a difficult campaign with extremely limited playing time for the Londoner. Okedina made his first competitive appearance for our under 18’s that season when he started our Premier League Cup group stage game against Fulham. He put in a competent performance at RCB in that game as he partnered Brooklyn Lyons-Foster in central defence. Unfortunately in a season when Okedina was out for significant periods due to injury, the then first year scholar didn’t play again for our under 18’s in a competitive fixture until January 2018, when he came on as a late substitute in a pulsating 6-3 victory over Brighton and Hove Albion down on the south coast. 

In his second year of scholarship with the Lilywhites the teenager enjoyed an impressive break through season at under 18 level for the club. The defender who is also eligible to represent Nigeria at international level started the 2018/19 campaign when he came on as a substitute for our under 18’s in a PL South game against Swansea. It took a little bit of time before he established himself in the under 18 side in which he properly got a chance in after putting in a good performance and 3-2 victory over Arsenal in the league, a game in which he scored in. Okedina started every remaining league game that season for our under 18’s after that Arsenal game. Combining his time playing in his natural position of central defence as well as at right back the Spurs man who in addition to his 16 league games that season (he also featured once for them in the FA Youth Cup as well as making a couple of appearances in the Premier League Cup), also made his debut for our under 19’s in the UEFA Youth League against PAOK, as well as his under 23 debut in a PL2 game against Brighton and Hove Albion at right back. Okedina excelled for our under 18’s during that season with some excellent defending at both right back and centre half. However, our penultimate league game of the season against Chelsea in Cobham was arguably his best performance, as he put in a faultless defensive display with his reading of the game and anticipation of danger second to none. Promoted to our development side after signing a professional contract during the summer of 2019, Okedina played a number of games for our development side during pre-season, as well as travelling to France to play for Spurs in the Tournoi Europeen. Okedina started the 2019/20 season proper by performing very well at right back in our under 23’s 4-0 opening day PL2 victory over Liverpool. 

Jubril Okedina would play the vast majority of our development sides games up until March and before the season was curtailed due to the pandemic. The defender almost always played at right back, with the one exception being after he came on as a late substitute in a 4-0 PL2 defeat to Blackburn Rovers when he played at RCB. A very consistent performer throughout the campaign as he continued to adapt to his new position following the 2018/19 season, Okedina played 17 times for our development side during the season just gone, scoring one goal. As a right back during the season just gone some of Okedina’s impressive traits were defending tightly and aggressively down the right flank. In addition to that the versatile defender who is good with the ball at his feet and has good close control, is a skilful player who is capable of dribbling his way out of tight situations. He is a cool and composed defender who rarely panics, and reads the game mostly well and effectively. Some of Okedina’s best defensive attributes include being good in the air, possessing good pace, remaining defensively disciplined and also steady, with him usually making well timed challenges and rarely making rash decisions. A well rounded defender, one of the pluses to him playing at right back regularly is the fact that it will help him to further improve his ability to bring the ball out from the back when playing at centre half. Another plus to playing at right back is that it allows him to put his attacking qualities into practice. Last season the hardworking right back demonstrated a real willingness to get up and down that right flank throughout matches. Okedina who is strong at going forward on darting runs, knows when to overlap the Spurs right winger, but also when to stay deep and defend. The technically good young player is agile and that along with his strength allows him to get forward to effect. 

A good passer and crosser of the ball Okedina’s form shortly before the lockdown and subsequent curtailment of the season was very good indeed. The young defender put in two really good performances at right back against both Leicester City and Wolverhampton Wanderers respectively in the PL2. In the game away to Leicester he defended solidly but also did some really good offensive work. Overlapping his man (the Spurs right winger – Maurizio Pochettino) at the right times, he really threatened Leicester down that side of the pitch. Okedina also scored a good goal after powering home an unstoppable low effort on the edge of the Leicester box. In the following and final league game of the season against Wolves in Stevenage, the right back once again put in a really good well rounded performance. Getting up and down that right flank so well, he defended tenaciously as well as being potent at the other end of the pitch. Okedina was also involved in our opening goal of that 3-2 win, when he curled a nice pass all the way down the right flank for winger Maurizio Pochettino to run onto and set up Troy Parrott. When you think about the fact that Jubril has really had to adapt to his new position over the course of the last two seasons, it really is quite impressive as he has looked really at home in that right back role. He is still young and developing his game as well as learning new things all the time, but he is a player I really like and admire for how he consistently performs on the pitch. Hopefully the defender who turns 20 in October can keep pushing on next season for our development side and continue to improve his all round game. I do really hope that he gets his chance to play for the first team in the future at some point, maybe one pre-season. Now that our development side players have returned to training at Hotspur Way I would like to wish Jubril all the very best of luck for the 2020/21 season as well as congratulate him for having a fine 2019/20 season.

Spurs under 23’s versus Everton: (match preview)

Spurs under 23’s versus Everton: (match preview)


After recording their first win of the new PL2 season last Friday evening, Wayne Burnett’s under 23 side will be hoping to put in a performance similar to the one which saw them beat Manchester City last week, when they travel to Liverpool on Sunday, to face Everton. Burnett’s particularly youthful side showed real promise during their encounter with Manchester City. And since Burnett has switched to playing with three at the back, his talented side have looked a lot more fluent in their play and a lot more solid at the back. We have a historically poor record against Everton at this level especially at Goodison Park where this game will be played on Sunday for the fourth consecutive season in a row. Playing at a stadium such as Goodison Park provides our youngsters with a valuable opportunity to play in front of a big crowd at a premier league stadium. And that as much as anything is so important for their development in the game. Despite losing 4-1 two seasons in a row up on Merseyside, Spurs will be looking to change that on Sunday afternoon after their impressive victory over Manchester City. David Unsworth’s Everton side have picked up eight points in the league this season and have only lost on one occasion. After winning the inaugural PL2 title during the 2016/17 season, Everton were unable to retain their crown last season and were for the most part a mid table team. However, they still managed to do the double over us in the league last season. It will be a tough game for our lads on Sunday, whilst Everton have plenty of attacking talent. Such as last seasons top scorer Antony Evans, creative Irishman Harry Charsley and powerful centre forward Bassala Sambou, I don’t think the toffees are a better team than us. I think home advantage has counted for a lot in recent seasons, the roar of the crowd at Goodison Park and that feeling of playing at the toffees stadium spurs players on. I just hope it will be the other way round on Sunday afternoon, my in-depth match report of our visit to Everton will be published on the following day.

My predicted lineup: (3-4-2-1) Austin, Dinzeyi, Tanganga, Binks, Eyoma, Oakley-Boothe, Marsh(c), Brown, Roles, Maghoma, Harrison.

Subs from: De Bie, Walcott, Duncan, Tracey, Parrott.

Doubtful: Anthony Georgiou and Shilow Tracey.

Injured/unavailable: Jamie Reynolds, Tariq Hinds, Kazaiah Sterling.

Previous meeting: Spurs 1-4.

My score prediction: Spurs 3-2.

My one to watch: The toffees 20 year old midfielder Antony Evans. Everton’s top scorer in the PL2 last season with four league goals, Evans who has previously spent time on loan at Morecambe has proved to be quite a consistent player for David Unsworth during his time in charge of the development side.

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

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


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 23’s 2-0 Manchester City: (match report)

Spurs under 23’s 2-0 Manchester City: (match report)


Our under 23’s recorded their first win of the new PL2 season in style on Friday night, after they overcame a talented Manchester City side 2-0 at Broadhall Way. Wayne Burnett went for the same system that had earned our development side a point ten days earlier, in their Checkatrade trophy game against Crawley Town. Burnett’s trust in the like of Luis Binks and Paris Maghoma (both 17) paid off once again on Friday evening, as Spurs overcame a potent possession based Manchester City side. The sky blues enjoyed the majority of possession throughout the game and with their high press and energy in the final third, they made life difficult for Spurs. After a tricky opening 20 minutes which had seen the visitors create a couple of decent chances for themselves as they moved the ball around well, Spurs were struggling to get a hold on the game. However, a perfectly weighted defence splitting pass from Paris Maghoma in the 21st minute, changed all that. Maghoma was outstanding on the night and the 17 year olds pass to set Shayon Harrison through on goal totally paralysed the Man City defence, as Harrison ran through to cooly give Spurs the lead. Then, eight minutes later Spurs doubled their advantage through Paris Maghoma who made an excellent darting run across the Manchester City defence before picking up Oliver Skipp’s excellent pass. In typical fashion, Maghoma kept his cool in front of goal as he calmly skipped past the outrushing goalkeeper before clipping home to give Spurs a healthy two goal cushion. It was an excellent game of football but Spurs didn’t dominate the game by any means, Manchester City remained a threat throughout the remainder of the game. The unstoppable speed of Rabbi Matondo caused havoc for Spurs down the flanks as did the many surging runs through the middle from Tom Dele-Bashiru. Paul Harsley’s side gave a good account of themselves on the night, but they couldn’t recover from Spurs’ two quick goals in the first half.

Spurs showed a real maturity about their game and they defended extremely well, whilst goalkeeper Brandon Austin had another heroic game as he made eight impressive stops. Spurs’ first win of the season sees them move out of the relegation zone ahead of next Sunday’s trip to Liverpool when they face Everton at Goodison park. Opting to leave the likes of Japhet Tanganga on the bench for our league game with Manchester City, Burnett decided to stick with the likes of Maghoma and Binks who retained their places in an identical system to the one in which they used against Crawley Town in the Checkatrade trophy. Brandon Austin kept his place in goal for Burnett’s side whilst a back three of Jonathan Dinzeyi, George Marsh and Luis Binks lined up in front of him. In front of them was the defensive midfield partnership of Luke Amos (the skipper) and the much welcomed return of one Oliver Skipp. Both were joined on either side with Eyoma and Brown who played as wingbacks. Paris Maghoma and Jack Roles played effectively as inside forwards behind the experienced Shayon Harrison who led the line for the second consecutive game. The visitors got the game underway on a mild autumnal evening in Stevenage as a fairly large crowd took to their seats inside Broadhall Way. Manchester City threatened our defence in the opening couple of seconds of the game. After George Marsh had almost lost the ball to Benjamin Garre on the edge of the Tottenham penalty area, thankfully on this occasion he had gotten lucky. Then a couple of moments later the ridiculously athletic Rabbi Matondo sprinted past Luis Binks down the right wing before continuing onto the byline, before clipping a cross into the box which was cleared away by the alert Dinzeyi. Paul Harsley’s Manchester City side were hogging possession in the opening stages as Spurs struggled to get much of the ball. However, we should have had a penalty after Paris Maghoma was brought down unlawfully inside the penalty area by Cameron Humphrys early on. After the midfielder combined well with Harrison on the edge of the penalty area Harrison slipped the ball into him. Maghoma’s protest were ignored by the referee Sam Purkiss.

Brandon Austin made his first save of the game shortly afterwards as he comfortably gathered Nabil Touaizi’s low effort from range. The visitors were moving the ball around the pitch a lot quicker than us and they were creating some decent chances in the process. After Adrian Bernabe found Matondo out on the right wing, the wide man powered forwards before squaring the ball to Touaizi who was waiting inside the box. However, the Frenchman’s scuffed effort was easily held by the grateful Brandon Austin. Paul Harsley’s intricate side continued to threaten the Tottenham defence as Garre whipped a menacing ball across the face of Austin’s goal from out wide. Limited only to a couple of half chances inside Manchester City’s final third, Spurs had to be resourceful with the ball. A good move which saw Eyoma pass the ball to Skipp down the right wing saw the young midfielder attempt to find Harrison with a low cross inside the penalty area. However, Skipp’s cross came bouncing straight off the leg of Harrison who failed to control the ball. Jonathan Dinzeyi made an important interception at the other end to break up a dangerous attack from Touaizi as Man City continued to look the more likely team to score. That’s why it came as quiet a surprise to me when Spurs took the lead against the run of play through Shayon Harrison in the 21st minute of the game. After picking the ball up in the centre of the park, young Paris Maghoma looked up before playing the most perfectly weighted defence splitting pass right through the middle of the Manchester City defence. Catching them off guard, the defenders were paralysed as Maghoma sent Harrison through on goal. The centre forward showed remarkable composure as he entered the penalty area before calmly tucking the ball past Daniel Grimshaw and into the bottom left hand corner of the goal, 1-0. Maghoma raced over to Harrison by the corner flag as the pair celebrated Spurs’ opening goal of the game. Luis Binks did well shortly afterwards to intercept the ball off of the darting Matondo to put the ball out for a corner kick.

The so far impeccable goalkeeping of Brandon Austin took a further turn shortly afterwards as the 19 year old produced an excellent diving stop to prevent Touaizi from finding the back of the net. After being played in down the right hand side of the penalty area by Garre, Touaizi attempted to beat Austin with a powerful low effort towards the far corner of the goal. However, he got down well to make an exceptional fingertip save. Jonathan Dinzeyi was forced into clearing Benjamin Garre’s menacing cross a couple of moments later before Marsh then threw himself in the way of Dele-Bashiru’s cross. Then a mere eight minutes after we had taken the lead, Wayne Burnett’s side doubled their advantage through the excellent Paris Maghoma. Similar to the first goal in many ways, Oliver Skipp spotted Maghoma’s darting run across the Man City defence. Skipp fed Maghoma in with a well weighted pass inside the Man City penalty area, Maghoma took an excellent first touch before cooly skipping away from the outrushing Grimshaw and calmly clipping the ball into the empty net, 2-0. Spurs were now showing a remarkable energy to their game and unsurprisingly they were looking a lot more confident with the ball. Only a couple of minutes after doubling Spurs’ lead Maghoma made a terrific sliding challenge to win the ball off of Bernabe on the edge of the oppositions penalty area before quickly poking the ball out to Roles out on the right wing. However, the Cypriot youth internationals low cross just failed to pick out Harrison at the back post. Roles then had an excellent goalscoring chance a couple of minutes later, after Skipp had set him through down the right. Roles sprinted down the right before entering the penalty area where he was met by the outrushing Grimshaw. Roles’s effort was hit straight at the Manchester City goalkeeper with the ball then coming out to Maghoma on the edge of the penalty area. However, Maghoma was unable to get his shot away as two Man City players crowded him out. Once again Maghoma looked for a penalty kick as he lay on the ground. Jonathan Dinzeyi made an excellent sliding challenge on Garre shortly after as Spurs continued to defend extremely well.

The ever threatening Matondo then fired the ball across the goal as Austin managed to get a touch to divert it clear or so he thought. Bernabe was waiting on the opposite side but his similarly wild effort flew across the face of the goal. Jaden Brown picked up a yellow card shortly after for a mistimed challenge on Dele-Bashiru. Paris Maghoma then blazed well wide of goal after playing a one-two with Harrison on the edge of the box. Dele-Bashiru responded by firing an effort wide from long range at the other end of the pitch as an enthralling and hugely productive first half came to a close. Burnett’s side got the second half underway as they looked to build on their impressive two goal lead. And Paris Maghoma came close to doing exactly that early on in the half. After receiving Jack Roles pass Maghoma cut inside from the left wing, before going on a lovely jinking run through the middle as he powered forwards. Maghoma tricked his way past Dele-Bashiru before forcing a good diving save out of Grimshaw with a good curling effort from the edge of the penalty area. Oliver Skipp nodded the ball just over from George Marsh’s resulting corner as Spurs started the second half with the same energy that they had ended the first in. Another incisive move saw Amos pick out Brown out on the left wing with a nice pass. Brown sprinted forwards before finding Harrison at the back post with a nice cross. Harrison connected with it first time and volleyed narrowly wide of the goal. Shayon Harrison was almost played through by Maghoma a couple of minutes later as Spurs continued to dominate proceedings. Manchester City’s first effort at goal of the half came from Matondo who had switched flanks at half time. Cutting in dangerously from the left, the Welshman fired an effort at goal which flew narrowly over Austin’s crossbar from the edge of the box, courtesy of an important touch off of Dinzeyi. Touaizi then played a nice pass to Garre who cut inside from the right wing before forcing an easy save out of Austin at his near post.

And the Tottenham goalkeeper was forced into action again only a matter of minutes later to thwart Matondo’s powerful low effort, after the former Cardiff schoolboy had cut inside before shooting from the edge of the penalty area. Jonathan Dinzeyi blocked the same players effort from range a couple of moments later as Spurs were forced into dealing with a barrage of attacks from the visitors. Dele-Bashiru then fired an effort over the crossbar after powering his way through the middle before Oliver Skipp produced an important block to stop the newly introduced Iker Pozo’s shot on the edge of the penalty area. Spurs started to find their rhythm again as Maghoma shifted the ball out to Brown out on the left wing. The fullback squared it for Maghoma who had made a run towards the edge of the penalty area. The midfielders first time side footed effort flew narrowly over Grimshaw’s crossbar. Maghoma had shown great understanding to link up with Brown in the first place and to initiate the move. Brandon Austin was then called into action at the other end after Alpha Dionkou had played a pass to Touaizi inside the penalty area. However, Austin was alert and came rushing off his line to make an important stop before smothering the loose ball before Touaizi could finish on the follow up. George Marsh became the second Spurs player to pick up a yellow card after he was booked on 75 minutes after committing a cynical foul to break up a dangerous Man City attack. Shayon Harrison forced a decent save out of Grimshaw with a powerful effort from the edge of the penalty area moments later. French teenager Claudio Gomes then forced a similar save out of Austin a couple of minutes later with a testing low effort from just outside the penalty area. Shayon Harrison came off in place of Tashan Oakley-Boothe with 11 minutes still to go after leading the line extremely well. Luis Binks hadn’t put a foot wrong and the young centre half produced two vital late pieces of defending to ensure that Spurs’ clean sheet was still intact.

First to get in front of his man to clear Matondo’s cross and then Binks blocked Dele-Bashiru’s follow up on the edge of the penalty area. Harsley’s side were really going for it as the game started to draw to a close. An intricate
late move saw Pozo pass the ball out to Touaizi out on the right wing, the Frenchman then cut the ball back to Gomes on the edge of the penalty area. However, Gomes effort was well saved by Austin, Dylan Duncan entered the frame shortly afterwards to replace the highly effective Paris Maghoma. Jaden Brown was lucky not to get himself sent off after taking out Garre out in the penalty area without getting anything on the ball during the final moments of the game. Brandon Austin comfortably held Claudio Gomes’s late effort as Burnett’s side passed the ball around the park during the final moments of the game, as Spurs went onto record their first win of the new PL2 season. It was an excellent performance from Burnett’s young side, they demonstrated their maturity and ability against a very good Manchester City team. It would seem that playing with three at the back is proving quite beneficial for Burnett’s side.

Player reviews: – Brandon Austin: Yet again the young goalkeeper put in a heroic performance in between the sticks. Austin was on the top of his game against Man City and his many excellent and important saves, saved Burnett’s side on countless occasions. Making eight saves in total, Austin didn’t put a foot wrong and managed to deal with set pieces well. His diving save to stop Nabil Touaizi’s effort in the first half could only be described as world class.
– Jonathan Dinzeyi: It was a really mature and assured performance from the ever improving centre half on Friday evening. Playing on the right side of a back three, Dinzeyi put in a flawless defensive performance. Snuffing out danger well and knowing when to step in front of his man. Dinzeyi helped to break up numerous Man City attacks. He was also dominant in the air and made more clearances than any other player on the night. Dinzeyi’s passing was also impressive and accurate.
– George Marsh: The skipper played in the middle of the Tottenham back three and in many ways provided the defence with real leadership. Marshalling his teammates well throughout the game, the 19 year old made many blocks, clearances and interceptions. He added steel to the Spurs defence and helped both Binks and Dinzeyi out on numerous occasions.
– Luis Binks: After appearing for the development side in the Checkatrade trophy game against Crawley. Binks retained his place in Burnett’s side for the game against Manchester City. And once again the first year scholar defied his age by putting in an excellent performance on the left side of the back three. The Kent born teenager showed remarkable levels of maturity and understanding whilst defending against the sky blues potent attacking front line. The 17 year old read the game well and in his almost Alderweireld-esque defending kept good positioning throughout. Not once did Binks make a sliding challenge, he defended on his feet and did so superbly well. Pinging some lovely balls out to Brown and Eyoma on the flanks as well. Binks made it difficult for the speedy Rabbi Matondo to cut inside during the first half of the game. The teenager also made a superb piece of defending during the second half to prevent two goalscoring chances, he has that rare ability to know exactly when he needs to come across his man. Our under 23’s defence has really improved since he has been drafted into the side and it is no coincidence.
– Jaden Brown: Brown put in a good showing at left wing back, particularly in the second half when he didn’t have to deal with the speedy Rabbi Matondo. Brown protected that flank well and looked good going forward, whipping some nice crosses into the box in the process. It will be interesting to see if Brown is included in Tottenham’s UEFA youth league squad ahead of Tuesdays game against Inter Milan.
– Luke Amos: The skipper played such a crucial role in the victory over Manchester City. Operating essentials as a midfield anchor man, Amos covered so much ground as he protected the back three alongside Skipp. Amos was so effective in the middle of the park as a ball winning midfielder, Kante-esque (which he’ll be pleased with me saying) Amos was terrific in his cdm role. He must surely be eyeing a start in our league cup tie with Watford in a couple of weeks time.
– Oliver Skipp: Whenever Oliver Skipp plays he gives Burnett’ side a different edge at that’s exactly what he provided us with on Friday night, as he partnered Amos in the centre of midfield. Skipp dictated play impacting us offensively with his many driving runs through the middle, but also getting stuck in and helping to protect the back three. Skipp who turned 18 on Sunday was domineering and decisive, his decision making with the ball at his feet was top class and he made a number of excellent passes throughout the game including the one which set up Maghoma’s goal. Dare I say it but I think he is too good for this level!
– TJ Eyoma: The 19 year old operated as a right wing back for the Manchester City game and whilst he put in a decent first half showing up against Benjamin Garre. Eyoma really struggled to deal with the electric Rabbi Matondo after the Welshman switched flanks at half time. Matondo tore Eyoma apart down that right hand side and it didn’t matter what the 18 year old tried, he just couldn’t stop him.
– Paris Maghoma: My motm, see below.
– Jack Roles: Roles made a really positive impact on the game in what was his first PL2 start of the season. The Cypriot youth international played on the right hand side of an attacking triangle and managed to be one of Burnett’s most creative and effective players throughout the game. Roles provided excellent movement in the final third, constantly getting himself into nice little pockets of space. By doing this he helped out the likes of Harrison and Maghoma, the 19 year old made some lovely passes during the game and also showed really quick feet. Berbatov-esque in many ways Roles will be disappointed that he wasn’t able to get on the scoresheet.
– Shayon Harrison: Harrison led the line well for the second consecutive game, working extremely hard up top. The 21 year showed good movement and a real willingness to drop deep. His first half goal was really well taken and he could have had another in the second half had luck been on his side.
– Tashan Oakley-Boothe: N/A.
– Dylan Duncan: N/A.
My man of the match: Paris Maghoma. Operating as an inside forward/cam Paris Maghoma put in an incredible performance against Manchester City on Friday. The 17 year old was the difference between the two sides. Setting up Shayon Harrison’s opener with a perfectly weighted through ball, the midfielder then doubled our lead with an excellently taken goal a couple of minutes later after making a brilliant run across the defence. Maghoma had an immense impact on the game and he was a real thorn in Manchester City’s side. Unlike in the Arsenal and Liverpool games where he was forced into dropping deep due to the circumstances, Maghoma was able to really express himself against the sky blues. Orchestrating play in an almost Onomah-esque way, Maghoma caused havoc for the Manchester City defence with his many slaloming runs, crisp passes and impressive link up play. Maghoma showed a real maturity and understanding about his game. He was sharp in his play and aware of his surroundings. On another day he could have had a hat-trick but I couldn’t have been more pleased with the way he conducted himself on Friday evening as he continued his excellent start to the new season. Young Paris had many kids coming up to him at the end of the game looking for autographs and photographs, and that on its own tell you everything you need to know about his performance.

Spurs: Austin, Eyoma, Brown, Marsh, Dinzeyi, Binks, Maghoma (Duncan 84), Amos (c), Harrison (Oakley-Boothe 79), Skipp, Roles. Substitutes (not used): De Bie, Tanganga.

Manchester City: Grimshaw, Dionkou, Humphreys (c), Rosler, Ogbeta, Gomes, Matondo, Dele-Bashiru, Touaizi (Gonzalez 84), Bernabe (Pozo 46), Garre (Poveda 62). Substitutes (not used): Scott, Richards, Gonzalez.

Goals: Spurs – Harrison 21, Maghoma 29.

Yellow cards: Spurs – Brown 40, Marsh 75; City – Dionkou 58.

Referee: Sam Purkiss.

Venue: Lamex Stadium, Stevenage.

Attendance: 637.

Spurs under 21/23’s statistics 2018/19:

Goals scored: Shayon Harrison – 3
Samuel Shashoua – 1
Marcus Edwards – 1
Jaden Brown – 1
Paris Maghoma -1

Assists: Troy Parrott – 1
Jaden Brown – 1
Shayon Harrison – 1
Paris Maghoma – 1
Oliver Skipp – 1

Spurs under 23’s versus Manchester City: (match preview)

Spurs under 23’s versus Manchester City: (match preview)


Our under 23’s return to action on Friday evening when they host Manchester City at Broadhall Way, in the PL2. After Wayne Burnett’s younger then usual development side put in a hugely impressive performance against league two club Crawley Town in the Checkatrade trophy last week, Spurs will be buoyed ahead of Fridays match. Featuring a selection of under 18 players, Burnett’s side showed a different kind of energy and creativity to their game during the 1-1 draw with Crawley, something which could prompt him to field a similar lineup for the visit of the sky blues. Second year scholars Jamie Bowden and Paris Maghoma put in excellent performances in the centre of midfield against Crawley and they were pivotal to us creating chances, it will be interesting to see if Burnett sticks with them for the Man City game. Still searching for their first win of the new PL2 season, Burnett’s side have struggled for goals so far in this campaign. However, Manchester City’s leaky defence could provide them with a couple of opportunities to add to their tally of five goals this season. Whilst the opposition haven’t started the season in the best of form defensively speaking, Paul Harsley’s side have been free scoring and have managed to find the back of the net on 13 occasions already this season. Picking up seven points from their first four PL2 games, Harsley’s side have picked up impressive victories against both Arsenal and West Ham. However, they also suffered a surprising 5-0 defeat to Brighton in their last PL2 outing. Prolific in front of goal, Man City’s potent attack includes inform Spanish centre forward Nabil Touaizi who has six PL2 goals already this season. In addition, Harsley’s speedy wide man Rabbi Matondo has also been in impressive goalscoring form. With Guardiola’s possession based attacking football implemented in the academy set up, Man City’s development side play almost identical football to their first team as you would expect.

Manchester City passed us off the park when these two teams met in this fixture last season, as they recorded a 5-0 win against Spurs at Broadhall Way in the final PL2 fixture of last season. Bolstered by the attacking fire power of Phil Foden, Brahim Diaz and Lukas Nmecha, the sky blues ripped our defence apart in that game. And whilst those players are unlikely to be involved on Friday, the creativity of the likes of Ian Poveda who also played in that game is something that Spurs will have to deal with if they are to stop a repeat of that happening. Another talented player who has been involved in all four of Manchester City’s PL2 games this season is French midfielder Claudio Gomes. A highly rated central midfielder, Gomes was a summer recruit from French side PSG. I think it will be fascinating to see how Burnett will approach this game, whether or not he’ll opt for the same kind of format which saw us impress against Crawley last week is yet to be seen. However, if we play Harsley’s side at their own game then we will force mistakes out of their defence, this will likely result in another high scoring affair. Without the suspended Troy Parrott for Friday evenings game, Spurs’ only other recognised centre forward Shayon Harrison is an injury doubt after limping off against Crawley. Hopefully there’ll be more opportunities for our under 18’s to feature in this important PL2 clash. I will be reporting on Friday evenings game and I shall have my report out by the following day.

My predicted lineup: (4-2-3-1) Austin, Marsh, Eyoma, Tanganga (c), Brown, Bowden, Skipp, Oakley-Boothe, Maghoma, Roles, Harrison.

Subs from: Freeman, Dinzeyi, Duncan, Bennett, Markanday.

Doubtful: Shilow Tracey and Shayon Harrison.

Injured/unavailable: Troy Parrott (suspended), Kazaiah Sterling (injured), Jamie Reynolds (injured), Tariq Hinds (inured), Anthony Georgiou (inured).

Previous meeting: Spurs 0-5.

My score prediction: 2-2.

ICYMI: https://superhotspur.com/2018/09/10/jamie-bowden-the-local-lad-who-im-hoping-will-follow-in-the-footsteps-of-harry-winks/

My one to watch: Manchester City’s ridiculously quick right winger Rabbi Matondo is a player who is capable of causing Spurs serious problems on Friday. The athletic Wales under 21 international has beaten the likes of Leroy Sané in sprint tests, and his exceptional speed, agility and fancy footwork has hit the headlines over the past year. The former Cardiff youngster has started the new PL2 season in fine form, with three goals from the sky blues opening four PL2 matches. Matondo is a really powerful, skilful and direct winger who when in full flow is impossible to defend against. Jaden Brown will have a really tough task to try and stop the threat of Matondo on Friday evening, he is likely to be Manchester City’s biggest threat going forward.

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:


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 21’s 1-1 Crawley Town (Crawley won 5-3 on penalties): (match report)

Spurs under 21’s 1-1 Crawley Town (Crawley won 5-3 on penalties): (match report)


Our development side got this seasons Checkatrade trophy campaign underway when they took on league two side Crawley Town on Tuesday night. Wayne Burnett’s under 21 side were hoping to improve in the competition this season after making their debut in it during the 2017/18 season. Without the talented defensive duo of Japhet Tanganga and TJ Eyoma who had already gone away on international duty with England, Burnett was forced into fielding a whole host of players from our under 18 side. It was a much changed side to the one which had lost 2-1 to Arsenal on Friday. Our visit to Crawley saw first year scholars Malachi Walcott and Luis Binks start in a back three as they made their debuts at this level. Furthermore, second year scholars Paris Maghoma and Jamie Bowden formed an effective partnership in central midfield. Burnett also showed faith in several more of our under 18’s, such as Harvey White and J’Neil Bennett (both 16) who joined Armando Shashoua and Troy Parrott on the Spurs bench. Burnett had shown faith in this extremely young Spurs side and they didn’t let him down, they were superb against the league two outfit. Playing beyond their years, the young Lilywhites rose to the occasion, putting in an impressive and assertive performance against the much more physical and experienced Crawley Town. Burnett’s side were confident and assured in their play during their 1-1 draw with the Red Devil’s. They read the game well, defended impeccably and knew when to burst forwards. In my opinion our youngsters put in an even better performance than the one in which our under 23’s put in against Liverpool only a couple of weeks earlier. Despite losing 5-3 on penalties to the Sussex club which saw Burnett’s side miss out on the extra bonus point on offer, Spurs came back to London with a valuable and hugely respectable point. Combative and willing to battle with the much more physical opposition, Spurs were highly competitive throughout what was a very close first half with few clear cut chances falling for either side. The second half was a lot more open as both sides tried to break the deadlock with their attractive style of football.

Shayon Harrison pounced on a poor pass from Dannie Bulman to finish well from inside the penalty area to give Spurs the lead on 50 minutes. However, our lead would only last for nine minutes, Crawley centre defender Bondz N’Gala drew level for the league two side after volleying home from Lewis Young’s free kick. An exciting 30 or so minutes remained as both sides tried to find the winner. However, despite their best efforts neither side could find that illusive goal and the game ended up going to a penalty shootout to determine who would get the extra bonus point. Sadly, Paris Maghoma missed the decisive penalty for Spurs owing only to a fantastic save from the Crawley goalkeeper Yusuf Mersin. Unfortunately for Burnett’s young side, Crawley’s David Sesay converted the resulting penalty kick to earn the home side the extra point. Originally scheduled to kick off at 7:45 pm, our Checkatrade trophy game was delayed by 15 minutes owing to traffic problems. Burnett’s young and experimental side played in a 3-4-2-1 formation, with Brandon Austin starting in goal. In front of the 19 year old goalkeeper was a back three of Jonathan Dinzeyi, Malachi Walcott and Luis Binks. Four Tottenham players started in the midfield, with George Marsh and Jaden Brown operating as wingbacks, whilst Maghoma and Bowden started in the centre of the park. In front of the midfield was the attacking triangle of Oakley-Boothe and Roles (both of whom played outwide) whilst the most experienced member of the team Shayon Harrison led the line. The home team got the game underway but it was Burnett’s side who had the first real chance of the game, only a couple of minutes in. A good move from the young Lilywhites saw Maghoma play in Harrison down the left hand side of the penalty area with a nicely weighted pass. However, the Tottenham forward was closed down well by Crawley defender Joe McNerney who blocked his effort out for a corner. Luke Young’s corner kick caused havoc in the Spurs box at the other end pitch. As Spurs frantically tried to clear Panutche Camara’s header inside the penalty area.

Paris Maghoma had taken the game by the scruff of the neck during the opening stages, and the creative midfielder came close to giving Spurs the lead through a move of his own making. Maghoma burst forward through the centre of the park, the 17 year old tricked his way past Camara before firing an effort narrowly wide of the Crawley goal from 25 yards out. It had been a lively start to the game as both sides tried to move the ball around the park. However, it had been Burnett’s side who had started the game the brightest of the two teams. Another move orchestrated by Maghoma saw the midfielder exchange passes with Harrison on the edge of the Crawley penalty area, before blasting the ball over Mersin’s crossbar. Jack Roles then had a shot blocked by Camara on the edge of the penalty area, as Spurs continued to put pressure on the hosts. Limited mainly to set pieces, Lewis Young’s free kick into the danger zone deceived everyone in a red shirt as it went harmlessly wide for a goal kick. Burnett’s side came close to opening the scoring when Jaden Brown whipped a menacing ball into the box after receiving Maghoma’s pass. The left wing backs delivery was only just missed by Roles who came sliding in at the near post, but failed to make contact with the ball. A heroic piece of defending from Marsh prevented Crawley from breaking the deadlock a couple of minutes later. A sharp incisive move from the home team saw Young pass the ball to Camara on the edge of the penalty area. Camara quickly slipped the ball into Randall inside the box, but just as he was about to pull the trigger Marsh came sprinting across his man to make a goal saving sliding challenge. The alert Jonathan Dinzeyi then made a good header at the back post to clear Young’s menacing cross into the danger zone. Crawley whipped another dangerous ball into the penalty area, this time through McNerney whose pacy delivery was glanced marginally wide of Austin’s goal by Tarryn Allarakhia.

The lively Jack Roles then won a free kick in a promising position out on the right wing, after some fancy footwork from the Cypriot youth international drew a foul from a Crawley player. However, Bowden’s resulting delivery ended up going straight down the throat of Crawley goalkeeper Yusuf Mersin. The game was quickly gathering pace with action aplenty at both ends of the pitch, as both sides went in search of the opening goal of the game. Dannie Bulman came close to gifting the home side the lead after he cut inside Binks down the right before firing over. Shayon Harrison forced a save out of Mersin a couple of moments later, after the centre forward picked up Jack Roles’ pass on the edge of the Crawley penalty area. The tricky Harrison managed to hold off his man before forcing a good stop out of Mersin at his bottom left with a powerful effort. Brandon Austin was then tested for the first real time after the 19 year old was forced to deal with Bulman’s fizzing effort from range, which Austin was just able to palm behind for a corner at his bottom left. The Crawley midfielders effort had plenty of swerve on it and had almost caught the Spurs goalkeeper by surprise. The energetic Jack Roles made a hugely important interception shortly afterwards to win the ball off of Camara inside the penalty area. Lewis Young then saw his headed attempt at goal cleared by Jaden Brown as Spurs continued to quell Crawley’s attacking onslaught towards the latter stages of the half. However, Burnett’s side were still seeing more of the ball and they were continuing to create chances through the middle. An intricate move from the young Lilywhites saw Maghoma pass the ball to Harrison, the forward then shifted the ball out to Brown who went galavanting down the left hand side before whipping the ball into the danger zone. Brown’s cross was cleared away by a Crawley defender but only into the feet of Harrison who was waiting on the edge of the box as the centre forward blasted the ball over the crossbar with a poorly struck volley.

Passing the ball around the park in the final minutes of the half it was quite obvious that Burnett’s side just wanted to go into halftime with the scores all level. However, Crawley came a matter of inches away from taking the lead right on the stroke of half time. After Crawley defender Joe McNerney cut inside from the right wing, McNerney shimmied past Binks on the edge of the box before curling an effort across goal and narrowly wide of Austin’s right hand post to wrap up an entertaining first half of football. Spurs got the second half underway as Burnett’s young lads tried to continue to hold their own against the considerably more physical opposition. And the Red Devil’s started the half quite brightly, after Maghoma gave the ball away to Young, the Crawley skipper charged down the right flank before continuing towards the edge of the Tottenham penalty area where he dragged an effort wide of goal courtesy of a deflection off of Dinzeyi on the way. Paris Maghoma made amends for giving the ball away moments later when he produced an important block to thwart Camara’s effort on goal from the resulting corner kick. Having managed to survive this spell of pressure that Crawley had put them under, Burnett’s side were continuing to work hard in order to create chances of their own. Harrison didn’t need any of his players to help him out after the Tottenham forward had the ball played into him inside the penalty area on 49 minutes. Harrison couldn’t believe his luck as Bulman passed the ball to him inside the penalty area whilst trying to find Mersin. Harrison picked up the ball down the left hand side of the penalty, the youngster looked up at goal as Mersin struggled to get back into position and fired a low effort towards the far corner of the goal. Harrison’s shot struck the inside of the right hand post before bouncing across the goal and into the opposite side of the net, 1-0. It was a typical poachers goals from a player who I have seen score those kind of goals for what feels like a very long time.

After having taken a deserved lead the big test for Burnett’s youngsters was finding a way to hold on to that lead. The so far uninvolved Oakley-Boothe managed to win a free kick for Spurs on the edge of the penalty area. However, Maghoma’s resulting effort was driven straight into the Crawley wall. The ball came out to Marsh on the edge of the penalty area, the right wing back steadied himself before lashing the ball high over Mersin’s crossbar. The fast paced start to the half continued as Camara attempted to play in Dominic Poleon down the right side of the Tottenham penalty. And Camara almost succeeded in picking the former Leeds man out but for a vital interception from the alert Binks to break up the attack. The referee Tim Robinson temporarily halted play after Brown and Maghoma clattered into each other out on the left wing. The impressive Luis Binks then made an important block inside the Tottenham box to block Bulman’s header after the Crawley midfielder had gotten on the end of Young’s corner kick. Despite our impeccable defending we were caught out by a Crawley free kick in the 59th minute. Lewis Young’s in swinging delivery from the right managed to pick out Bondz N’Gala in the centre of the penalty area. The physically imposing defender managed to get to the ball before Dinzeyi to stab the ball into the top right hand corner of Austin’s goal, from only four yards out. N’Gala’s unstoppable volley had given Austin no time to react, it was a fine finish from the Crawley centre half, 1-1. The referee had been very harsh on Walcott to award the free kick in the first place for a supposed foul from the the 16 year old. A player who was doing an excellent job in the centre of the park was Jamie Bowden, and the creative 17 year old almost managed to pick out Harrison in the penalty area with a lovely pass over the top of the Crawley defence. However, Harrison couldn’t quite get the ball down in time as a Crawley defender got back to clear. Spurs were trying incredibly hard to regain their lead.

The skilful Jack Roles managed to turn his man wonderfully before passing the ball to Harrison on the edge of the penalty area. Harrison managed to sort his feet out quickly before forcing a good save out of Mersin who got down to the stop his powerful low effort at goal. The particularly attacking Jaden Brown almost managed to play the ball into Harrison a couple of moments later. Oakley-Boothe saw his cross into the box come off the top of Mersin’s crossbar a few minutes later whilst Roles tested Mersin from range with a low effort as Spurs continued to trouble the league two sides defence. Spurs’ good spell of possession continued as Jack Roles had an effort blocked by N’Gala before Burnett’s side had a penalty claim waved away by the the referee, after Oakley-Boothe was brought down inside the area by Poleon after the teenager had surged past his man. Despite being relatively comfortable in possession young Malachi Walcott’s poorly weighted back pass towards Austin allowed Poleon a clean route through to goal. Poleon darted down the left side of the penalty area where he came one on one with Austin who managed to close down his angles well before making an excellent stop to prevent Poleon’s powerful effort. Before the alert Luis Binks got back to deny the Crawley forwards follow up with a superb sliding challenge. Spurs then broke forwards down the other end as Brown charged down the left wing before forcing a decent stop out of Mersin at his near post. After a frantic five or so minutes of action at both ends, Burnett was forced into making his first substitution of the game after Harrison had picked up an injury. Burnett brought on young Troy Parrott for the remaining 12 minutes of the game. The tireless George Marsh produced a superb block to thwart Allarakhia’s effort on goal a couple of minutes later. Whilst Brandon Austin almost found himself in a spot of bother after he spilt a Crawley free kick inside the penalty area.

Both sides were really pushing for that late winner and this meant that both teams defences were very open. A teasing cross into the box from Marsh out on the right hand side only just evaded Roles who came ghosting into the penalty area. 16 year old J’Neil Bennett was brought on shortly afterwards in place of Tashan Oakley-Boothe as Burnett tried to inject some pace into the Spurs side. A lot more confident and creative in the second half, Bowden almost managed to play the newly introduced winger through on goal with a well weighted pass through the Crawley defence. Brandon Austin wasn’t taking any chances with substitute Brian Galach’s menacing ball into the penalty area, as the Tottenham goalkeeper tipped the ball over the bar and out for a corner kick at the other end. Brown produced a fine piece of defending to get a vital touch to Camara’s resulting volley from inside the penalty area after the striker had gotten on the end of the resulting corner kick. Then came a late confrontation between both sets of players, after a nasty sliding challenge from Maguire on Roles, tempers started to flare. The Crawley defender was unhappy that Roles was still on the floor as he lay in pain. So Maguire attempted to haul him up by the back of his shirt, this annoyed Dinzeyi and Marsh who rushed towards the Crawley man to confront him. However, Roles got back on his feet to prevent his teammates from getting themselves in any unnecessary trouble. Spurs had a late chance to win the game after Bowden whipped an inviting free kick into the danger zone. Luis Binks tried his best to get to the the ball but the defender just missed it, as Mersin gathered. Austin was forced into action during the last couple of minutes of the game to punch clear Randall’s free kick as he ended up taking out Binks in the process. The same player had a free kick blocked by the Spurs wall shortly afterwards as McNerney blazed over on the rebound. The extra point would be decided by a penalty shootout.

Crawley had the advantage of taking the first penalty of the shootout, as Crawley skipper Lewis Young stepped up to take. Young’s slightly fortuitous effort straight down the middle of the goal, came off of the underside of the crossbar before bouncing up into the roof of the net, 1-0. Young Luis Binks replied for Spurs with a cool penalty which was fired into the bottom right hand corner of the goal. The Red Devil’s then made it 2-1 after Dominic Poleon slotted home, whilst the typically calm Jack Roles paid no attention to the jeering Crawley fans as he made it 2-2 with a finish into the top right hand corner of the goal. Randall then fired home emphatically to make it 3-2, before Jamie Bowden responded by beating Mersin with a powerful effort to the keepers left. Despite the outstretched Austin diving the right way, the Spurs goalkeeper was unable to prevent Ollie Palmer from finding the bottom right hand corner of the goal to make it 4-3. Great pressure was put on the shoulders of our next penalty taker Paris Maghoma, the 17 year old went on his usual little run up. However, this time the teenager was denied by Mersin as his convincing effort towards the bottom left hand corner of the goal was stopped by the outstretched Mersin as Maghoma buried his face in his shirt in utter disappointment. David Sesay had the chance to win it for Crawley from the spot and the former Watford youngster duly obliged. Firing the ball straight down the middle to make the scores 5-3. It didn’t matter that Burnett’s side weren’t able to pick up the extra point, at the end of the day they put in a performance of real maturity. One in which demonstrated their class and ability but most importantly of all provided our younger than usual development side, with the vital experience of playing against a football league side in a competitive game. Our next game in this competition is next month where we will play in Gillingham in a must win clash at Priestfield on the 9th of October.

Player reviews: – Brandon Austin: Austin put in another superb performance in between the sticks, on what was only his second appearance of the season. I was very impressed with the way in which he dealt with set pieces, and how commanding he was against some very big and physical Crawley players. Not only that, the 19 year old made a string of fine saves including an excellent one to deny Dominic Poleon from a one on one situation during the second half.
– Jonathan Dinzeyi: The most experienced member of a very young Tottenham back three, Dinzeyi played at rcb for the game against Crawley. Impressive and assertive in his defending, Dinzeyi was dominant in the air and made numerous headed clearances. I also thought that the 18 year old read the game well and apart from the odd lapse in concentration he put in a really strong performance. The one time winger would often drive out from the back in an almost Vertonghen-esque way.
– Malachi Walcott: 2002 born centre half Malachi Walcott made his debut at this level on Tuesday evening. Playing in the middle of the back three, young Walcott put in a really mature performance. Like his peer Luis Binks he played like an experienced 25 year old, his decision making was nice and effective as too was his defending. Walcott won the vast majority of his aerial duels and apart from making one error which allowed Poleon to run through on goal, he was flawless.
– Luis Binks: Like Walcott, Binks showed a maturity well beyond his years. Only two days after turning 17 Binks made his debut for the development side, playing on the left side of the back three. Making many important interceptions and challenges despite his lack of experience, the England youth international read the game even better than our other two centre half’s. There were two pieces of defending which really stood out, the vital interception he made to prevent a through ball from reaching a Crawley forward in the penalty. And also his excellent last ditch challenge/block to prevent Poleon from scoring early on in the second half. Binks also despatched his spot kick very cooly indeed.
– George Marsh: Operating as a right wing back, the 19 year old skipper led by example and put in a very solid showing down on that right hand side. Marsh got up and down the flank very well and contributed at both ends of the pitch, but it was the midfielders many important challenges, interceptions and blocks which proved so vital to Spurs picking up the point. Marsh played with aplomb.
– Jamie Bowden: My motm, see below.
– Paris Maghoma: Maghoma was pivotal to the way in which Spurs played, operating as a central midfielder the youngster produced the complete midfield performance. Strong and assertive in the middle of the park, Maghoma made such a positive contribution to the game. With his fancy footwork, movement and awareness, the 17 year old posed a real threat at both ends of the pitch. His willingness to embark on surging runs through the middle created multiple chances for Spurs as too were his many well weighted through balls which he managed to feed into Harrison. Never afraid to try his luck from range, Maghoma was brave both with and without the ball at his feet. He was productive but above all else he was hungry to influence play, to drive at the Crawley defence and to hold off players who were twice the size of him. Once again he demonstrated his great potential. Maghoma was an orchestrator for Spurs from the centre of midfield and put in a very mature performance.
– Jaden Brown: Playing as a left wing back, Brown was a real attacking threat down the left wing. With his many surging runs and pin point crosses into the danger zone, the fullback turned out to be one of our most creative players on the night. The 19 year old also got stuck in defensively and made some important defensive contributions.
– Tashan Oakley-Boothe: Playing almost as an inside forward out on the right, Oakley-Boothe struggled to get into the game for large periods of it. However, during the second half he started to play with a bit of flare about his game and was far more creative. He was however, brought off in place of Bennett with eight minutes of the game remaining.
– Jack Roles: Playing on the opposite side of Oakley-Boothe, Roles was a real live wire throughout the game. His movement was first class as too were the many runs he made in and around the six yard box. The midfielder came close to getting on the end of Brown’s menacing crosses on numerous occasions. He also passed the ball around crisply and created some good chances.
– Shayon Harrison: Harrison lasted 78 minutes of the game before being forced off through injury in the second half. He led the line by example and really played off the shoulder of the Crawley defenders. He was sharp and incisive and would often look to test Mersin from the edge of the penalty area, Harrison took his goal extremely well and made it look easy.
– Troy Parrott: The Irishman looked very sharp during his late cameo.
– J’Neil Bennett: Bennett was only on the pitch for a couple of minutes but the first year scholar showed a real willingness to take on Lewis Young down the left wing.

My man of the match: Jamie Bowden. For those spectator who were unaware of the youngsters age and previous experiences at this level, you’d of thought young Jamie was an experienced member of Spurs’ development side based on his dominant performance against Crawley. It was a very Winks-esque performance from the 17 year old in the centre of the park. Bowden stayed deeper than Maghoma and mopped up well in front of the back three, not only did he read the game exceptionally well, Bowden was feisty without being aggressive. He was a ball winning midfielder as well as a creative midfielder and provided vital protection to the back three. Rarely dispossessed throughout the game, Bowden was strong on the ball and held his own against the likes of Bulman and Randall. He was cool, calm and collected much like Winks was at the same age. However, he showed a remarkable understanding of the game and of his surroundings. He was sharp and attentive and good at breaking up play. However, as the game went on he really started to grow in confidence and made some lovely defence splitting passes through to Harrison up top, he played with a panache about his game and showed great composure. Bowden also converted his spot kick during the penalty shootout. I’m planning on writing an in-depth piece on the midfielder at some point during the international break.

Crawley Town: Mersin, Young (c), McNerney, Poleon, Nathaniel-George (Galach 46), Maguire, Allarakhia (Palmer 80), Bulman (Sesay 71), Randall, Camara, N’Gala. Substitutes (not used): Morris, Doherty, Connolly, Morais.

Spurs: Austin, Marsh, Brown, Walcott, Dinzeyi, Binks, Maghoma, Bowden, Harrison (Parrott 78), Roles, Oakley-Boothe (Bennett 82). Substitutes (not used): De Bie, Duncan, A Shashoua, White.

Goals: Crawley – N’Gala 59; Spurs – Harrison 50.

Yellow card: Crawley – Randall 85.

Referee: Tim Robinson.

Stadium: Broadfield Stadium.

Attendance: 1,403.

Penalty shootout: Crawley – Young – scored
Spurs – Binks – scored
Crawley – Poleon – scored
Spurs – Roles – scored
Crawley – Randall – scored
Spurs – Bowden – scored
Crawley – Palmer – scored
Spurs – Maghoma – saved
Crawley – Sesay – scored

Spurs under 21/23’s statistics 2018/19:

Goals scored: Shayon Harrison – 2
Samuel Shashoua – 1
Marcus Edwards – 1
Jaden Brown – 1

Assists: Troy Parrott – 1
Jaden Brown – 1
Shayon Harrison – 1

Spurs under 23’s 1-2 Arsenal: (match report)

Spurs under 23’s 1-2 Arsenal: (match report)


It was an experience to say the least for our development side on Friday evening when they took on Arsenal at the Emirates stadium. Wayne Burnett’s much changed side to the one that drew with Brighton the following Friday, had to deal with a quality Arsenal side, in what was the first north London derby of the season. Without the experienced trio of Georgiou, Amos and Josh Onomah who went on loan to Sheffield Wednesday earlier in the day, Burnett fielded a young side for the short trip to the Emirates during our 2-1 defeat. This saw Brooklyn Lyons-Foster and Brandon Austin make their first starts of the new season, whilst first year scholar J’Neil Bennett (16) came off the bench to make his debut at this level. It was a very tough evening for Spurs who were second best against a very good Arsenal team which included the likes of Emile Smith-Rowe and Joe Willock. The reigning champions of the division dominated from the offing, controlling the midfield, they were fluent in their passing and Freddie Ljunberg’s side also played with width. Often troubling us out wide, the immensely talented Xavier Amaechi and Emile Smith-Rowe were potent throughout the game. Arsenal started the game well and Burnett’s lads found themselves a goal down after just three minutes, when Joe Willock capped off a good move with a fine finish from inside the six yard box. Burnett’s tepid side struggled during the opening periods of the game against the much livelier Arsenal, and they remained on the back foot for the remainder of the half, as Ljunberg’s side dictated play. Spurs conceded another soft goal early on in the second half when Tyreece John-Jules doubled the Gunners advantage. Burnett’s side were spirited but lacking in creativity. Centre back Japhet Tanganga gave away a penalty later on in the second half, of which was taken by Charlie Gilmour only to see his effort spectacularly stopped by Austin who was our best player on the night. Spurs battled hard throughout the remainder of the game, and after Troy Parrott was sent off for his part in a late melee involving both sets of players, Spurs pulled a goal back deep in stoppage time through Jaden Brown. Nothing more than a consolation goal on the night but it did however, draw a huge cheer from the vocal away end.

At the end of the day Arsenal were far superior to us and despite a spirited performance with plenty of hard work and willingness to create, Spurs lacked the spark needed to trouble a side with the calibre of Arsenal. Burnett lined up with his familiar 4-2-3-1 formation but with a notable amount of changes from the Brighton game. Brandon Austin started in goal for the first time this season following his return from injury whilst a back four of Lyons-Foster, Eyoma, Tanganga and Brown sat in front of him. Oliver Skipp started in the middle of the park alongside the skipper George Marsh, whilst an attacking line of Harrison, Maghoma and Oakley-Boothe lined up in front of them, with young Troy Parrott leading the line for the third successive game. The Gunners got the game underway at the Emirates in front of a particularly vocal crowd (especially in the away end) at the 60,000 seater stadium. Ljunberg’s side looked sharp in the opening moments of the game. Tottenham centre half TJ Eyoma conceded a free kick on the edge of the Tottenham penalty area inside the first minute of the game after fouling John-Jules, who had done well to latch onto a long ball. Thankfully for Spurs, Xavier Amaechi’s resulting free kick was driven straight into the Spurs wall. However, Spurs’ relief was only short lived and Burnett’s side conceded a soft goal a couple of minutes later. Arsenal had looked menacing during the opening moments of the game and Spurs had been caught cold by Ljunberg’s attack minded side, in only the third minute. The move started when the speedy James Olayinka sped past Lyons-Foster down the left hand side before continuing towards the byline where he was met by Tanganga. Olayinka sent a low cross into the penalty area which was met by John-Jules. However, the centre forward failed to connect properly with the ball and it rolled out towards Joe Willock who stabbed the ball past Austin from close range, with a well improvised finish, 0-1

After taking the lead Arsenal were even more fluent in their play as they zipped the ball around the park. Struggling to form any sort of real shape, Spurs looked to respond down the other end of the pitch. Jaden Brown’s promising pass to Maghoma just evaded the midfielder inside the Arsenal penalty area. Whilst at the other end Lyons-Foster made an important clearance to get rid of Amaechi’s cross after the winger had gone on a searing run down the right wing. Shortly afterwards Shayon Harrison robbed the ball off of Smith-Rowe before attempting to feed Parrott the ball with a clever through ball, but the 21 year olds pass was snuffed out by an Arsenal defender. After a series of half chances if you could even call them that, Arsenal regained their stranglehold on the game as they attempted to extend their lead. And the Gunners came close to doing just that but for a brilliant header from Tanganga to block Smith-Rowe’s effort from the edge of the six yard box, as he prevented it from troubling Austin in the Spurs goal. Restricted to ambitious passes to the isolated Troy Parrott up top such as Skipp’s lovely lofted pass towards the Irishman which was cleared by the outrushing Martinez. Arsenal were allowed to control the game and they were happy just to play their usual passing game before embarking on the odd jinking run. The lively playmaker Smith-Rowe was continuing to cause problems for the Spurs defence and he was allowed all too easily to thread a pass through to Amaechi down the right side of the penalty area. In time and in space, Amaechi took his effort early and forced a good stop out of Austin who thwarted the wingers powerful low shot on goal. A sloppy pass from Marsh to John-Jules a couple of minutes later allowed the Arsenal forward to drive forwards through the middle.

Continuing unopposed towards the edge of the penalty area, the Arsenal centre forward played a well weighted pass into Willock inside the box. However, the midfielders powerfully struck effort was well saved by Austin who managed to palm the ball to safety. The alert Japhet Tanganga did well to block Charlie Gilmour’s powerful drive at goal a few minutes later as Spurs continued to struggle. Failing to register a single attempt on goal, Burnett’s side were lacking in creativity and their failure to use the wide men was starving Parrott of any sort of support. The potent Smith-Rowe had a goal ruled out for offside for the Gunners and once again he had been allowed far too much space and time. Forced to sit deep inside their own half Burnett’s side were defending well against the ferocious Arsenal attack. Tolaji Bola headed over after getting on the end of Amaechi’s free kick whilst Harrison attempted to play in Parrott at the other end of the pitch with a nice pass. However, the forwards through ball was over hit and Martinez came out to smother the loose ball. Looking to end the first half with a flurry, the dangerous Amaechi managed to latch onto a long ball down the right, beating Brown to the header before continuing into the penalty area before having his shot blocked by Eyoma. And the attacking onslaught from Ljunberg’s side was showing no signs of slowing down. The creative Joe Willock sent a lovely ball over the top of the Tottenham defence which Smith-Rowe was able to latch onto. Beating the outrushing Austin, Smith-Rowe rounded the Spurs goalkeeper before attempting to find John-Jules who found himself in space inside the six yard box. However, his low cross was excellently blocked by the sliding Lyons-Foster, before Tanganga cleared the loose ball, it was the last bit of action from what had a been very difficult half for Spurs.

16 year old J’Neil Bennett could be seen working on his skills during the halftime break, and the pacy winger was duly brought on for the start of the second half, to make his under 23 debut. Burnett’s side got the game back underway but once again they had been caught cold right from the start. A pacy and powerful run through the middle from Smith-Rowe started to open up the Tottenham defence. Oliver Skipp missed Smith-Rowe with his sliding challenge as the forward continued unopposed before shifting the ball out to Amaechi down the right. The speedy forward burst into the penalty area before dragging his shot dangerously across the face of Austin’s goal. Spurs responded at the other end through Maghoma whose dangerous cross into the box was headed away by Ballard. Then, the spritely J’Neil Bennett had his shot blocked by Tolaji Bola on the edge of the box, believe it or not that had been Spurs’ first attempt on goal of the game. The lively start to the second half continued as the ever potent Smith-Rowe hit the frame of Austin’s goal possibly with a touch from the Tottenham keeper, after driving through the middle once again before curling an effort towards the top left hand corner of the goal. Troy Parrott then headed wide at the back post after being picked out by George Marsh inside the penalty area. Tottenham full back Jaden Brown went into the book a couple of minutes later before Burnett’s side were dealt a further blow on 58 minutes when the Gunners doubled their lead. It was a well worked goal from Ljunberg’s side but once again it had been a sloppy one to conceded from Spurs’ point of view. Willock picked apart the Spurs defence all too easily with his nicely weighted through ball to Bola inside the box. Eyoma lunged attempting to trap the ball but the Spurs defender couldn’t clear it as Bola continued inside the area before cutting the ball back to Tyreece John-Jules who clinically guided the ball into the bottom left hand corner of Austin’s goal, from ten yards out, 0-2.

Burnett’s side had allowed Arsenal too much time and space to play their brand of football, and it had cost them dearly. After doubling their advantage Arsenal continued to control the game, dominating possession in the process. Burnett made an offensive substitution when he introduced Jack Roles for the skipper George Marsh on the hour mark in an attempt to freshen things up. And the attack minded midfielder almost managed to find Parrott at the back post with a teasing cross shortly after coming on however, it just evaded the Dubliner. Arsenal continued to threaten us, Amaechi’s run into the penalty area resulted in the 17 year old cutting the ball back to John-Jules on the edge of the box. The Arsenal forwards sliced effort went well wide of the mark as Spurs avoided further upset. Then, a couple of moments later Olayinka lobbed the ball over the Tottenham defence and into the feet of Bola whose first time effort was comfortably saved by Austin. Things got even worse for Burnett’s lads when Japhet Tanganga gave away a needless penalty after taking out Bukayo Saka inside the danger zone. After the flying wide man had burst in to the penalty area after being played in by Bola, Saka continued towards the byline with Tanganga preventing him from cutting inside. But for some reason Tanganga decided to go sliding in on Saka without winning the ball to give away a stonewall penalty. Scotsman Charlie Gilmour stood up to take the penalty for the Gunners, but Gimour’s powerful low drive was excellently stopped to his right by penalty saving specialist Brandon Austin, who had managed to collapse his body at the right time to save Spurs. Following the penalty Burnett brought on Jonathan Dinzeyi for Lyons-Foster for the last ten or so minutes of the game. Tolaji Bola headed over after going to meet a corner kick inside the Spurs box, whilst Tanganga made an important block when he thwarted Julio Pleguezuelo’s cross a couple of minutes later. Then came the main talking point of the game, the late melee involving both sets of players.

It had all come about after Bola had committed a nasty looking challenge on Roles down the right wing. Roles reacted angrily to the fullbacks crunching challenge and before you knew it, both sets of players were squaring up to one another. It was mostly handbags but young Troy Parrott took it a step further by marching over to the Arsenal skipper Julio Pleguezuelo and pushing him to the floor, right in front of the referee! Parrott’s teammate Paris Maghoma was having none of the nonsense and he smartly pushed Parrott away from the scene to avoid him getting himself in any further trouble. A difficult four minutes of normal time remained for Spurs and the home team were continuing to pile the pressure on our depleted team. Ljunberg’s side almost made it 3-0 after Maghoma lost the ball to Willock on the edge of the penalty area, the midfielder traveled into the box before Tanganga out muscled him. However, the defenders back pass was over hit and left Austin scrambling to get back, fortunately it trickled narrowly wide. The unmarked John-Jules then headed wide after going to meet Bukayo Saka’s cross at the back post ,and the Arsenal onslaught didn’t stop there. The menacing Saka sent another ball into the danger zone a couple of minutes later, this time picking out Amaechi at the back post. The wingers well struck volley forced Austin into making a good diving save to deny the tricky Amaechi from getting on the scoresheet. Maghoma almost managed to pick out Harrison on the edge of the Arsenal penalty area shortly afterwards with a lovely searching pass. And there was to be one final unexpected twist in the game, in the fourth minute of stoppage time. Burnett’s side had managed to pull a goal back and in some style, after Skipp picked up Jack Roles’s pass on the edge of the penalty area. Skipp laid the ball off to Harrison who spotted the run of Brown down the left side of the penalty area. Harrison played a clever pass through to Brown who took a touch inside the box before rifling the ball into the bottom right hand corner of Martinez’s goal, 2-1. It was all too little too late from Burnett’s side who ended up losing 2-1 to their arch rivals on the night.

We were second best on the night and can have no complaints about the scoreline, however it was a spirited performance from our lads against an extremely talented Arsenal side. We were decent on the night but just like in the game against Brighton the previous Friday, we lacked in creativity and that has cost us so far this season. Up next for Burnett’s development side is a visit to the appropriately named Checkatrade stadium to face Crawley Town on Friday evening. As Spurs play their first group game of this seasons Checkatrade trophy, it will be a great opportunity for his side to bounce back from Fridays disappointment defeat.

Player reviews: – Brandon Austin: My motm, see below.
– Brooklyn Lyons-Foster: The 17 year old defender made his first start of the domestic season on Friday night, as he filled in for the injured Tariq Hinds at right back. And although he is far more comfortable these days at playing as a centre half, I thought the teenager did a good job at defending against Smith-Rowe down that right hand side. Lyons-Foster read the game well and did well to keep up with the tricky Smith-Rowe, he made a superb sliding block to deny the Arsenal playmaker from picking out John-Jules in the box, during the first half.
– Japhet Tanganga: Tanganga returned from suspension to put in a decent performance against the Gunners at centre half. Generally solid in his defending, the 19 year old made some good blocks and challenges and was dominant in the air. He did however, give away a needless penalty later on in the game.
– TJ Eyoma: Like Tanganga I thought that Eyoma did a decent job in the heart of the Tottenham defence. Like Tanganga, he read the game well and was good in the air. Eyoma also made a string of impressive interceptions inside the danger zone. I do however, think that he would have been far more effective for Spurs if he had been playing at right back.
– Jaden Brown: Brown had the tough task of trying to thwart the threat of the electric Xavier Amaechi down the left flank. I thought Brown did a decent job up against the highly skilful Arsenal forward. Amaechi did get the better of Brown on quite a few occasions during the game but I felt that Brown did alright against him. Brown’s main contribution to the game was his finely executed finish in stoppage time of the second half, after making a good run into the box to meet Harrison’s pass.
– George Marsh: We effectively had two holding midfielders playing in the middle of the park for the game against Arsenal. Marsh and Skipp (the latter in particular) put in good defensive performances e.g: breaking up play. However, this effected our attack and after a decent performance in that role, the skipper George Marsh was brought off around the hour mark for the more offensive Jack Roles.
– Oliver Skipp: By far and out our best outfield player on the night, 17 year old Oliver Skipp impressed in the centre of the park with a typically assured performance. He never overplayed anything, or took too many touches in the middle of the park, he was incisive and effective. Breaking up play and recycling possession, Skippy was ubiquitous and could be seen all over the pitch as he covered for players who were out of position. His range of passing was equality impressive and he made a string of ambitious passes over the top of the Arsenal defence.
– Shayon Harrison: It was another game where Harrison worked extremely hard out on the right wing, making good runs and tracking back after him. Harrison used the ball well but he saw it far too infrequently. Burnett’s side didn’t use the tricky wide man enough and he often found himself isolated out wide for large periods of the game. Following Parrott’s dismissal towards the end of the game, Harrison played up top where he looked lively. And the 21 year did especially well to set up Jaden Brown’s goal in the fourth minute of stoppage time. I really hope that Harrison starts the Crawley game as a centre forward.
– Paris Maghoma: The talented 17 year old linked defence with attack during the north London derby. Playing as a number ten on what was only his second appearance at this level, Maghoma was one of the few outfield players who caught my eye. Due to the pressure Spurs were under Maghoma wasn’t able to play with the attacking license he would have wanted, much like in the Liverpool game when we had to play with ten men. Forced to play quite deep for periods of the game, Maghoma still made some promising runs through the middle and some clever passes to the forwards. Linking up particularly well with Harrison throughout the game out on the left wing, Maghoma showed a real attacking nous about his game, it’s just a massive shame that Spurs found themselves in the position that they did. During the late melee involving both sets of players, I spotted a moment of real leadership from the 17 year old. After Parrott had shoved Pleguezuelo to the ground, Maghoma rushed over to Parrott and to avoid him from getting himself in any more trouble, he smartly pushed the 16 year old away from the scene.
– Tashan Oakley-Boothe: It was good to see Oakley-Boothe start his first under 23 game of the season, but frustratingly for the 18 year old midfielder he was limited as to what he could do. Surprisingly playing out on the right wing, Oakley-Boothe must have made the fewest touches out of all the Spurs players during the first half. Isolated on the wing just like Harrison was on the opposite flank, Oakley-Boothe was replaced on halftime for the much younger J’Neil Bennett.
– Troy Parrott: Starved of any real support up top, Parrott’s hard work wasn’t rewarded on the night and he was left living off scraps for the entirety of the game. Still only 16, the Irishman pressed the defenders well and would often look to make a run into the penalty area but it was to little avail. He did however, manage one attempt on goal during the first half. His performance however, will be remembered for his shove on Pleguezuelo during the melee which resulted in him getting sent off. Parrott will miss our under 23’s next PL2 game against Manchester City.
– J’Neil Bennett: The former QPR schoolboys excellent start to the season for our under 18’s was rewarded with a place on the bench for the north London derby. Coming on at half time to make his debut at this level, Bennett impressed down the left wing. Direct and positive, his trickery and willingness to take on Arsenal fullback Josep Olowu was great to see. Bennett also tracked back well and worked hard for the team.
– Jack Roles: Like Bennett, Roles had a positive impact off the bench, much more of a creative force than the man he replaced. Roles put some nice deliveries into the danger zone and created good pockets of space for himself in and around the six yard box.
– Jonathan Dinzeyi: N/A.

My man of the match: Brandon Austin. First of all I’d just like to say how happy I was, to see that the talented and charismatic goalkeeper had returned from his injury to make his first appearance of the season on Friday evening. Austin saved us on countless occasions against the Gunners. Making at least half a dozen saves, including a couple of excellent stops. The teenager from Hemel Hempstead dealt well with set pieces and was commanding inside the box. The two saves which particularly stick out is the one he made to deny Amaechi’s volley in the second half, and of course his excellent save to deny Gilmour from the penalty spot. Austin was superb against Arsenal!

Arsenal: Martinez, Olowu (Sheaf 51), Bola, Gilmour, Ballard, Pleguezuelo (c), Amaechi, Willock (Burton 87), John-Jules, Olayinka, Smith-Rowe (Saka 62). Substitutes (not used): Okonkwo, Balogun.

Spurs: Austin, Lyons-Foster (Dinzeyi 79), Brown, Skipp, Tanganga, Eyoma, Maghoma, Marsh (c, Roles 62), Parrott, Harrison, Oakley-Boothe (Bennett 46). Substitutes (not used): Freeman, Duncan.

Goals: Arsenal – Willock 3, John-Jules 58; Spurs – Brown 90+4.

Yellow cards: Arsenal – Bola 84, Pleguezuelo 84, Burton 90+6; Spurs – Brown 56, Roles 73.

Red card: Spurs – Parrott 84.

Referee: Adrian Quelch.

Venue: Emirates Stadium.

Attendance: 1,422.

Spurs under 21/23’s statistics 2018/19:

Goals scored: Samuel Shashoua – 1
Marcus Edwards – 1
Shayon Harrison – 1
Jaden Brown – 1

Assists: Troy Parrott – 1
Jaden Brown – 1
Shayon Harrison – 1