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Cambridge Utd v Spurs XI, 21.07.17
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List
[e-mail Ray Lo]


             2017-18 Pre-Season Friendly
              Josh Coulson Testimonial
              Abbey Stadium, Cambridge

            Friday 21st July 2017, 7.45pm

Cambridge United  2(0)  3(2)  Tottenham Hotspur XI
   (Yellow/Black)                  (White/Blue)

Cambridge Utd: Forde; Carroll, Taylor, Legge, Berry, Dunk, Ibehre, Osadebe, O'Neil, Coulson(C), Brown

Subs(All used): Deegan, Mingoia, Ikpeazu, Azeez, Roberts, Trialist(GK), Amoo, Elito, Davies, Darling, Trialist(2).

Scorers: Berry 51, Ikpeazu 90+1

Spurs(4-1-4-1): De Bie; Eyoma(Lock 73), Maghoma, Tanganga, Bennetts; Amos(C)(Skipp 78); Tracey(Loft 68), Pritchard(Shashoua 46), Duncan, Roles(Sterling 68); Harrison

Unused Sub:- Freeman

Scorer: Harrison 13 (pen), 40, 62

Attendance: 2188

Refeee: Chris Polland
Assistants: George Bryne & Abi Marriott
Fourth Official: Gavin Jolley

Spurs travelled to Cambridge for their second pre-season game with a couple of changes to the squad. The USA tour squad included some of the young players I would have expected to be involved here, had they not travelled with the first team. Schoolboy Oliver Skipp was on the bench now that school holidays have begun. New youth coach Scott Parker joined John McDermott in the directors box along with David Pleat for the FA.

Spurs lined up with De Bie in goal behind Maghoma and Tanganga with Eyoma at right back and Bennetts again on the left. Amos anchored the midfield with Pritchard and Duncan ahead of him flanked by Tracey on the right and Roles on the left The wide players had swapped shirts from the teamsheet. Harrison (who was the only Spurs player with league experience) led the line.

After presentations to the United captain the home side kicked off attacking the East end defended by Spurs. Spurs struggled to play their passing game as the home side closed them down quickly and hassled them all over the pitch, an example of which was when Bennetts got past Legge on the left to put in a good cross. The next time Bennetts pushed the ball past him, Legge took him out.

Osadebe had an early shot blocked for a corner before Spurs took the lead when Maghoma lofted a long ball forward and Pritchard was awarded a penalty challenging with Carroll just inside the area. Harrison stepped up to send Forde the wrong way placing the ball into the bottom left corner of the net.

As Spurs began to string passes together Harrison drew a save from a corner and Tracey fired wide having been sent away by Eyoma. Another long ball up the middle was controlled by Harrison who hit it on the turn and saw it come back off the left post. O'Neil fired wide on the break before Tracey played in Pritchard for a chance that was saved. Spurs got a second when Duncan robbed Legge near the halfway line and advanced on Forde before playing Harrison in to put the ball into an empty net. Brown, on trial from St. Neots, had been giving good support to Ibehre up front had an effort of his own saved by De Bie as the half ended.

Both sides made one change for the start of the second half with Spurs replacing Pritchard with Shashoua. The game began to open out as both sides sought to play the ball more and Coulson even had a long range effort that went over the bar. The change in tactics worked for the home side as Berry ran onto a ball into the area holding off Tanganga to beat Dr Bie and score.

After Harrison had a shot blocked Tanganga gave the ball away to Brown but De Bie saved. De Bie was called upon to save at the feet of Brown when he got through, conceding a corner. Spurs regained their two goal advantage when Shashoua combined with Roles on the left of the area for Roles to hit the ball towards the far post where Harrison popped up to tap in for his third goal of the evening.

Harrison had another chance from a right sided corner by Shashoua that was cleared to the striker on the edge of the area but the shot flew over. Harrison played in Tracey for a chance that was saved. We then had the sight of a mass substitution by Cambridge who made nine changes. Spurs also made two with Loft and Sterling replacing Tracey and Roles. Loft went up front and Sterling wide left with Shashoua moving to the right side with Harrison dropping into midfield.

The new players were soon into the action as Sterling intercepted a ball out wide and exchanged passes with Loft before drawing a save from the new keeper. Eyoma then gave way to Lock before Loft got down the right and put in a low cross that Davies failed to clear allowing Sterling to get in a shot which was saved by the keeper.

United made their last change to complete a second eleven with Josh Coulson going off to a standing ovation. Spurs made their last change with Skipp replacing captain Amos in that anchor postion. The game was now completely open as both sides moved the ball quickly from end to end. Ikpeazu played in Azeez for a chance that was wide and Shashoua played in Harrison to fire over. Harrison drew a save for a corner while the hard working Duncan saw his effort blocked having been played in by Shashoua.

United had the last word when Ikpeazu got behind to reach a long ball to the right, getting the better of Tanganga to lift it over the advancing De Bie for their second. There was just time to restart the game before the referee blew for time.

This was another good workout for the youngsters who had to face early pressure and close marking that prevented them playing their normal game. They kept working and got to play their passing football against experienced players. The standard of play was better than in the first game at Ebbsfleet, who United also played and beat, to indicate their improved performance. Spurs travel to France at the end of the month to complete in a U-21 tournament as they work towards the start of the season.

Ray

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