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Spurs v Man City, (PL2 - 02.05.18)
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List
[e-mail Ray Lo]


      Premier League 2, First Division, 2017-18
       Lamex Stadium, Broadhall Way, Stevenage
            Wednesday 2nd May 2018, 7pm

                 SPURS    v    MAN CITY
             (White/Blue)    (All Purple)
                4-1-4-1        3-2-4-1

                  0(0)           5(2)

          Alfie Whiteman  1  Aro Muric
           Timothy Eyoma  2  Cameron Humphreys
             Tariq Hinds  3  Tosin Adarabioyo
            George Marsh  4  Joel Latibeaudiere
        Jonathan Dinzeyi  5  Ed Francis
        Japhet Tanganga(C)6  Matthew Smith
           Shilow Tracey  7  Ian Poveda
            Oliver Skipp  8  Brahim Diaz
        Kazaiah Sterling  9  Lukas Nmecha(C)
         Samuel Shashoua 10  Phil Foden
        Anthony Georgiou 11  Luke Bolton

             Jaden Brown 12  Ash Kigbu
               (5)83Mins
          Brandon Austin 13  Tom Scott
            Dylan Duncan 14  Tom Dele-Bashiru
                             (2)46Mins
         Keanan Bennetts 15  Benjamin Garre
              (11)65Mins     (7)46Mins 
         Dilan Markanday 16  Lorenzo Gonzalez
              (10)65Mins     (11)83Mins

Scorers:-
                              Nmecha 18, 88
                              Diaz 29
                              Bolton 51
                              Foden 90+1

Coach:-
          Warren Burnett      Simon Davies

Attendance:- 411

Referee: David Rock
Assistants: Conor Farrell & Scott Williams
Fourth Official: Andreas Anastasiou

It was a cool overcast evening for the last game of the season with Manchester City the visitors. City are only one point above Spurs who beat Chelsea 2-1 at Stamford Bridge in their last game while City were held to a 1-1 draw by their city neighbours United. City beat Spurs 4-2 earlier in the season and also won 2-1 last season here at Stevenage.

Spurs lined up with Whiteman in goal behind Dinzeyi and Tanganga with Eyoma at right back and Hinds on the left. Marsh anchored the midfield with Skipp and Shashoua ahead of him. They were flanked by Tracey on the right and Georgiou on the left in support of Sterling up front. Dilan Markanday made the bench for the first time as reward for a great first season in the Academy. The City keeper was the tallest player on the pitch at 6ft 6ins making the goal look small.

Spurs kicked off the first half attacking the South end but looked in awe of the oppostion as they gave them plenty of space while not passing the ball well, giving the visitors time and space to attack. Poveda fired wide early and Whiteman saved from Diaz when played in by Bolton.

Spurs began to get into the game but fell behind when Nmecha was played in with his shot taking a deflection to beat Whiteman. Whiteman saved from Diaz for a corner before the Spaniard got the second goal on the break from Bolton's cross. Tracey played in Sterling for an effort that was wide before he had a weak effort saved.

Nmecha hit a free kick wide of the near post before Muric failed to deal with a Georgiou cross but saved Skipp's drive and the follow-up by Georgiou was blocked. In the last minute of the half Muric tipped over a free kick by Shashoua which had been heading for the top corner.

City made two changes for the start of the second half which saw an early effort by Georgiou deflected for a corner. Spurs were pushing forward in search of a goal that left them vulnerable at the back with the pace of the visitors. Dele-Bashiru drove wide for a corner before Diaz sent Bolton away to score inside the near post. Bolton and Diaz then combined for Nmecha to hit the crossbar from seven yards.

Sterling headed wide of the near post from a corner as Spurs continued to push forward. Diaz and then Foden fired wide before Diaz saw his goal line effort cleared off the line after Whiteman had got a hand to it. Spurs made a double change with Bennetts replacing Georgiou on the flank and a first appearance of the season for Markanday at this level as he replaced Shashoua. The young Spur was denied a goal by a last ditch tackle on the edge of the area just after coming on.

Nmecha got behind to fire over and again to force a save from Whiteman with Garre hitting his follow up over the bar. Spurs were living dangerously now and Tanganga cleared a Nmecha effort off the line. Foden saw Whiteman save his drive for a corner and Smith got forward to draw a save as well.

Both sides made their last changes at the same time with Brown replacing Dinzeyi going to left back with Hinds moving to the right side as Eyoma came inside. Skipp dropped deep changing places with Marsh as Spurs continued to look for a goal. Skipp got forward to fire well over and Markanday drew a save before Tracey crossed from the left for Brown to fire wide of the near post. Nmecha raced through to beat Whiteman to the ball and slot it into an empty net for his second. He then allowed Tanganga to intercept his pass when two on one but in added time he got it right to play in Foden for the fifth goal.

Spurs finish a topsy turvy season in ninth place having beaten both Arsenal and Chelsea but dropping too many points during the season mainly from bad mistakes. A late revival that included the away wins over over Arsenal and Chelsea saw Spurs escape relegation which is now the fate of Manchester United. Spurs showed City too much respect, not closing them down quickly enough while their own passing was poor. Markanday did well when he came on, increasing the pass completion rate of the team which was not that hard. A goal might have galvanised them into competing better. I think that if Markanday had started instead of Marsh, alongside Shashoua in midfield, then it would have been interesting and probably more productive. I look forward to seeing Markanday in the Champions Youth League next season.

Ray

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