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Arsenal v Spurs (EPL2), 03.03.17
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List
[e-mail Ray Lo]


       Premier League 2, First Division 2016-17
              Bell Lane, London Colney
             Friday 3rd March 2017, 2pm

                ARSENAL    v     SPURS
             (Red/White)      (White/Blue)
                4-2-3-1         4-2-3-1

                  2(1)            0(0)

        Emiliano Martinez  1  Pau Lopez
           Carl Jenkinson  2  Joseph Muscatt
            Cohen Bramall  3  Nicholas Tsaroulla
           Marcus McGuane  4  Filip Lesniak(C)
          Mathieu Debuchy  5  Christian Maghoma
             Ben Sheaf(C)  6  Japhet Tanganga
            Donyell Malen  7  Zenon Stylianides
             Reiss Nelson  8  George Marsh
              Yaya Sanogo  9  Shilow Tracey
            Vlad Dragomir 10  Samuel Shashoua
              Joe Willock 11  Joe Pritchard

            Eddie Nketiah 12  Charlie Owens
                (9)46Mins     (2)72Mins
                Hugo Keto 13  Thomas Glover
           Chiori Johnson 14  Reo Griffiths
                              (11)72Mins
             Josh Dasilva 15  Tariq Hinds
               (10)78Mins     (8)86Mins
             Joseph Olowu 16 

Scorers:-
             Sanogo 42
             Nelson 88

Booked:-
      Sheaf 90+2(Foul)         Marsh 32(Foul)
                               Tanganga 77(Foul)
                               Lesniak 90(KBA)

Coaches:-
               S. Gatting      J. McDermott 

Spurs made the short trip along the M25 to the Arsenal training ground for this North London derby. It was a chilly overcast afternoon just after the rain had stopped, with weak sun breaking through. Because the hosts do not let the public in for matches there were no teamsheets available. I had to go to the Arsenal website to look for information which did not have the officials or the correct numbering of the players. Arsenal beat Chelsea 4-1 in their last game while Spurs beat Sunderland 1-0. Earlier in the season the gooners beat Spurs 2-0 at Hotspur Way in a game that saw Owens sent off.

Spurs lined up with Lopez in goal behind Maghoma and Tanganga with Muscatt at right back and Tsaroulla on the left. Lesniak anchored the midfield with Marsh alongside him. Ahead of them Shashoua played behind when not level with Tracey up front flanked by Pritchard on the right and Stlyianides on his left. Four of Monday evening's victorious Youth Cup side that beat Newcastle United 5-3 got a start against some highly experienced opponents.

Spurs kicked off the first half attacking the South end in an open game that saw both defences on top, restricting chances to a minimum. Debuchy fired over from distance before Spurs' first chance came when Lesniak hit over from a corner. Arsenal had most of the play, using the wings to get forward quickly but ran into good defensive work by the Spurs back four. Tanganga was knocked out by one strong drive by Willock. An overhead attempt by Sanogo was cleared by Maghoma who also blocked the striker's effort when he robbed Tanganga. Pritchard fired over before Marsh was booked battling in the middle. The opening goal came from a mistake by Pritchard when he lost the ball to Sanogo who only had Lopez to beat, scoring at the near post despite Lopez getting his hands to the shot.

Sanogo was replaced at half-time by ex-Chelsea youngster Nketiah. Spurs had a great chance early in the second half when Lesniak won the ball high up playing in Tracey. Shilow beat Martinez with his rising drive but Debuchy got back to head it over the bar.

As Spurs began to push forward in search of an equaliser Arsenal took advantage by exploiting the extra space. Willock fired wide before Marsh put the ball into his own net under pressure from Nketiah but thankfully the referee blew for a foul. Dragomir drew a save from Lopez who also saved when Malen drove into the area.

Stylianides drew a save but Spurs were under pressure as Lopez saved from Nketiah. Maghoma saw his header (from a free kick) fly wide. Spurs made a double change with Griffiths replacing Pritchard and Owens coming on for Muscatt. Spurs switched to three at the back with Owens on the left. Shashoua moved to the right wing back position which was not very successful.

Malen fired wide before Tanganga was booked for a foul on Willock. Malen was played in by Nelson to draw a save from Lopez who recovered quickly to save the follow up by Nketiah. Marsh was replaced by Hinds who went to right wing-back allowing Shashoua to move forward. Malen beat Owens for pace getting to the line pulling the ball back for Nixon to score. Lesniak was booked for kicking the ball away after Spurs conceded a free kick and Sheaf went into the ref's book when he fouled Tsaroulla as he got past him in added time.

Arsenal deserved to do the double over Spurs in their first season in the first division as they moved to third in the table. Their win was helped by the under strength Spurs side who put up a good fight to hold them for as long as they did. Spurs remain in seventh, facing Reading next at Stevenage.

Ray

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