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Spurs U-18s v Fulham U-18s, 17.02.17
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List
[e-mail Ray Lo]

        Premier U-18 Southern League 2016-17
          Hotspur Way, Bulls Cross, Enfield
         Friday 17th February 2016, 12 noon

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

               0(0)             3(1)

        Alfie Whiteman  1  Taye Ashby-Hammond
          Matthew Lock  2  Joe Felix
           Jaden Brown  3  Jaydn Mundle-Smith(C)
          Oliver Skipp  4  Matt O'Riley
      Jonathan Dinzeyi  5  Steven Sessegnon
        George Marsh(C) 6  Jose Garrido
       Samuel Shashoua  7  Casian Thomas
  Tashan Oakley-Boothe  8  Isaac Pearce
         Reo Griffiths  9  Michael Elstone
            Jack Roles 10  Jayden Harris
       Keanan Bennetts 11  Dan Martin

           Tariq Hinds 12  Cameron Thompson
       Charlie Freeman 13  Julian Schwarzer
          Jamie Bowden 14  Nicolas Santos-Clase
            (10)59Mins     (8)70Mins
         Jamie Reyolds 15  Jerome Opoku
          Dylan Duncan 16 

                            Harris 44
                            O'Riley 53
                            Thompson 89

         Roles 27(Late)     Thomas 35(Foul)

           J. McDermott     M. Pembridge

Ref: P. Killip
Assistants: J. Alzate-Guzman & O. Bentley

It was a warm cloudy morning for the visit of Fulham who are on a good run winning their last match against Southampton 3-0. They have gone above Spurs who have not won in their last four games, losing last week 2-1 at Brighton. Because I did not check the Spurs site this morning I did not know that the kick off had been moved forward an hour so missed the first half hour of the game.

Spurs lined up with Whiteman in goal behind Dinzeyi and Marsh with Lock at right back and Brown on the left. Skipp anchored the midfield with Oakley-Boothe and Roles ahead of him with Shashoua on the right and Bennetts on the left in support of Griffiths up front. Again Kenny Jackett was on the bench with McDermott and not Nigel Gibbs.

When I arrived Fulham were on top pushing Spurs back who had difficulty in getting forward. Roles was booked having been warned for a few challenges when he was late in on Felix on the halfway line. Whiteman saved from Elstone before Shashoua won a corner having run onto a ball over the top. From the corner that was taken by the little wideman, Dinzeyi drew a save. Spurs began to hold possession which led to Thomas being booked. From the free kick Roles hit the inside of the near post, with the ball coming out to Bennetts. Ashby-Hammond saved at the expence of a corner. Bennetts took the corner and when it was played to the far post Dinzeyi headed wide.

Just before half-time Spurs failed to clear the ball from the right corner and it was picked up by Harris who drove into the area and hit a low drive into the near post where Brown and Whiteman got in each others' way allowing the ball to squeeze over the line for the opening goal.

Spurs replaced Oakley-Boothe with Duncan for the start of the second half which saw Roles draw an early save. A cross from Brown was not cleared and the midfielder saw his effort saved for a corner. The corner was taken short by Bennetts for Shashoua to curl his shot into the far post but Ashby-Hammond saved with Griffiths pulled up for off side going for the rebound. Marsh had a header saved when a corner was deflected to the far post before Thomas fired wide on the break.

O'Riley took a free kick to the far post where Garrido headed back for Sessegnon to head at goal. Whiteman saved but as the ball was half cleared to O'Riley his ball to the far post went in under the bar for the visitors' second.

Spurs pushed players forward in search of a goal with Fulham defending in numbers and looking for quick counter attacks using Pearce down the right. Griffiths had a chance saved before O'Riley hit the post with another free kick. Roles was replaced after another talking to by the ref with Bowden. Bowden however had to leave the pitch and come on again, as he had not been checked by the assistant on that side.

A break by Sessegnon saw him fire over before a Marsh long ball was headed on by Duncan and then headed by Brown into the path of Griffiths for a shot that was saved for a corner. Mundle-Smith fired over before Santos-Clase, who had only been on for a minute, was completely unmarked running onto a long ball but could not beat Whiteman. Pearce headed wide from another break before Bennetts fired over when played in by Griffiths.

Shashoua drew a save before an over-hit cross was collected by Griffiths who cut inside to draw a save from Ashby-Hammond. The keeper released the ball quickly to allow Thompson a free run on goal. Whiteman came out of his area but was left stranded as the substitute went round him and sent the ball into the empty net. Another break by Pearce down the right saw Santos-Clase fire wide before the ref blew the final whistle.

This was not a good performance by Spurs against high flying Fulham. It was summed up by Duncan not knowing where he was supposed to be when he came on, running into areas already occupied by fellow midfielders. Marsh again had a good game, keeping Elstone fairly quiet even after having been caught by the striker's arm across his throat. Once in front Fulham packed their defence giving little room for the Spurs players who were forced to recycle the ball giving the visitors the chance to win it and counter. If a player did beat his marker then there was another in quickly. Coupled with some poor passing, this saw Spurs come up short too many times. Due to their run in the Youth Cup Spurs have a busy period having to finish the first phase of the league programme by early March. This means two games a week with the next game on Tuesday when Swansea are the visitors to Hotspur Way. Swansea were thumped 7-0 in their last game at home to Reading.


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