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Spurs v Arsenal (PL2), 01.11.19
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List
[e-mail Ray Lo]

    Premier League 2, Division 1, 2019-20
   Lamex Stadium, Broadhall Way, Stevenage
      Friday 1st November 2019, 7.15pm 

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

            1(0)           3(2)

    Jonathan De Bie  1  Karl Hein
      Timothy Eyoma  2  Zac Swanson
     Jubril Okedina  3  Tolaji Bola
     Jamie Bowden(C) 4  Matthew Smith
    Malachi Walcott  5  Harry Clarke
         Luis Binks  6  Konstantinos Mavropanos
    Dilan Markanday  7  Trae Coyle
       Harvey White  8  Robbie Burton(C)
Tashan Oakley-Boothe 9  Tyreece John-Jules
   Armando Shashoua 10  Emile Smith-Rowe
      Shilow Tracey 11  Reiss Nelson

        Tariq Hinds 12  Joseph Olowu
          (3)69Mins     (2)87Mins
   Joshua Oluwayemi 13  James Hillson
      Paris Maghoma 14  Ben Cottrell
         (11)67Mins     (11)46Mins
    B. Lyons-Foster 15  Zech Medley
Maurizio Pochettino 16  Nathan Tormey
         (10)87Mins     (7)65Mins

           White 75     Burton 38
                        Coyle 45+1
                        Tormey 90+1 

   Walcott 28(Foul)     Swanson 35(Foul)
   White 33(Late)       Burton 45(Foul)
   Binks 90+1(Foul) 

      Wayne Burnett     Steve Bould

Attendance: 1149

Referee: Gary Parsons
Assistants: Jonathan Block & Hugh Gilroy
Fourth Official: Farai Hallam 

It was a cool damp evening for the North London derby at Stevenage. The weather did get worse during the game which made players slip about when not sliding in on the tackle. Spurs came into the game with a 2-1 win at Wolves to end a run of defeats while the visitors came without a win in their last four but drew 1-1 at Manchester City last time out. Last season Spurs lost 4-0 here as they struggled to contain the pace of the Arsenal attack. As the players came out for the start of this match the floodlights failed, causing a fifteen minute delay before kick-off.

Spurs lined up with De Bie in goal behind Walcott and Binks with Okedina at right back and Eyoma on the left. Bowden anchored the midfield with White and Shashoua ahead of him. They were flanked by Markanday (making his first start) on the right and Tracey on the left in support of Oakley-Boothe up front.

With the floodlights back on, Spurs kicked off the first half attacking the South end and soon began to press the midfield well, winning plenty of ball but without a sharp point to their attack. Three minutes in Markanday played Shashoua in through the middle but with pressure from Mavropanos he could not beat Hein with Tracey hitting his follow-up over. White received the ball in the middle of the area but had two attempts blocked with Oakley-Boothe hitting the loose ball wide.

When Clarke fouled Oakley-Boothe just outside the area White stepped up to see his free kick saved. White played in Markanday to fire wide for a corner. Walcott picked up an early booking stopping a break but most of the action was at the other end with White drawing a save from an Oakley-Boothe ball. Smith-Rowe got down the left but hit the outside of the near post. White lost the ball to Burton and was booked for catching him late.

Tracey was sent flying by a diving tackle by Swanson which only got the Arsenal full back a yellow card. Arsenal took the lead when Coyle got down the right and crossed for John-Jules. De Bie saved his close range effort but could do nothing as Burton followed up to put it in. Arsenal began to have more ball in the middle with John-Jules firing over but they still had more defending to do. In the last minute of the half Spurs had a free kick to the right of the area. Arsenal cleared the ball and Smith-Rowe broke down the pitch to play in Coyle to increase their lead before the break.

Arsenal made one change for the second half as they wanted to see out the game. Spurs began by seeking to up their game with Eyoma linking with Tracey for the wideman to curl wide. White saw his effort saved at the foot of the right post. Shashoua got in on the left to fire wide winning a corner. White played in Oakley-Boothe but his effort was blocked.

Arsenal were content to fill the midfield and counter when they won the ball which saw Burton fire over and Coyle draw a save by De Bie with his feet. Smith-Rowe fired wide before Bowden played in Markanday to cut inside to win a corner from which Bowden forced Hein to save.

Arsenal were breaking more as Spurs were taking more chances which saw De Bie save a header from Mavropanos at a corner. Spurs made two changes in quick succession. First Maghoma came on for Tracey and then Hinds replaced Okedina going to left back with Eyoma moving to his more favoured right side.

The visitors' breaks became more dangerous as they were turning the Spurs back line who were trying to push up. De Bie had to save from Smith-Rowe and Tormey, who was on for Coyle. Spurs pulled a goal back when Hinds played the ball in from the left for the run of Shashoua but his effort was saved by Hein with White following up to score.

Spurs were finding it hard to break down the visitors' defence who were happy to block the runs of the home side. Hinds crossed to the far side for Okedina to run onto and hit, drawing a save from Hein. Spurs' last change was to send on Pochettino to work on the left in place of the hard-working Shashoua allowing Maghoma to move inside. As the game moved into added time Arsenal broke from their own third to play in Tormey who out-paced the last Spurs defender. De Bie saved his first effort but the Arsenal player was able to hook the ball in for a killer blow. Binks was booked in the build-up trying to stop the break in the Arsenal half, having pushed up. That was the last action of the game as the whistle was blown after the restart.

Despite the scoreline it was a close game with Spurs having the better of the play at the beginning of each half but falling away against the pace of the visitors' counter attacks. Playing without a proper striker, Spurs missed chances that the likes of Parrott might have converted. Some of these players will travel to Serbia next week for the Champions Youth League game at the Vozdovac stadium on Wednesday. I hope to be there for a match that will be tougher than the 9-2 win at Hotspur Way in the last round. After that a Spurs U-21 will travel to the Priestfield stadium on the 12th to take on Gillingham in the EFL trophy. Last season they beat them 4-0 at the Valley but it will be harder at their own ground. After that it will be back to the league with a trip to Southport to take on Everton on the 22nd November.


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