FA PREMIER RESERVE LEAGUE
MONDAY 28TH JANUARY, 2002
SPURS RESERVES 2 (2) CHARLTON RESERVES 1 (1)
MacDonald (pen), 39
Referee:- Mr T. Kettle
Spurs (4-4-2):- Jalal; Kelly, Henry, O'Donoghue, Thatcher; Snee, Piercy (Capt), Jackson (sub Marney, 82), Galbraith; Ferguson (sub Sutton, 77), Kamanan (sub Slabber, 72)
Subs not used:- Burch; Vedeux
Booked:- Kamanan, Ferguson, Piercy
Charlton (3-5-2):- Ilic; Shields, Todd, Turner; Dean, Collis, McCafferty (sub Campbell-Ryce, 82), Martin, Lewis; Pringle, MacDonald
Subs not used:- Ricketts; Debolla, Snodin, George
With the first team squad busy preparing for their midweek clash with Newcastle, Colin Calderwood was restricted once again to fielding a very young and inexperienced reserve side. Of the team, only left back Ben Thatcher, signed by "The Predecessor" for £5 million, can claim to be a senior player, and Captain John Piercy was the only other member to have seen first team action of any kind. Charlton too fielded a young side, with just a bit more experience in the shape of Sasha Ilic, Andy Todd, Martin Pringle and Charlie MacDonald.
Spurs ran out deserved winners, with goals by David Galbraith, who starred on the left wing in the first half, and Steven Ferguson, who has missed too much of this season through injury. John Jackson had an impressive game in the middle, and he too has been out with a knee injury. Piercy had many impressive runs from the back, and several decent shots, and Stephen Kelly spent much of the game in an advanced position playing as a very attacking right back. Ronnie Henry (Yes - the one with the famous grandfather) and Paul O'Donoghue struggled a little at times, but made some very good timely tackles to keep Pringle and MacDonald at bay.
George Snee started on the right of midfield, but was to be found in a central-left position as the game progressed. he tried a 35 yard shot early on that was not far over the bar, before Galbraith fired in from close range after Ferguson headed the ball into his path from a corner. Spurs were well on top for most of the first half, playing with confidence and vigour.Some good passing play preceded a Piercy cracking left foot shot that went just wide of the goal. Piercy then had one of his runs, which ended with a somewhat theatrical dive on the edge of the area which did not impress referee Kettle. He did not see fit to book Piercy though, whereas he did collect four names in the fist 45 minutes.
On the half hour, Yannick Kamanan tried the Sheringham corner conversion. His shot was blocked, then O'Donoghue had a shot blocked before Piercy suffered the same fate. Charlton were given a lifeline by the officious referee on 39 minutes when he spotted an infringement (I didn't), booked Piercy, and MacDonald beat Jalal with a confident spot-kick. Spurs regained the lead just before the break, when Jackson fought his way into the box, had a shot parried, and Ferguson had an easy finish.
The defence had two early close shaves. One involved a mix-up between Jalal and O'Donoghue, nearly letting MacDonald make his way to the goal, before O'Donoghue retrieved the situation. MacDonald then made his way into the danger zone with a run before Collis had a shot blocked by a determined defence. Charlton were giving it their all, and it was all Spurs could do to hold on against quite an onslaught, but hold on they did. Spurs seemed to be reduced to the long ball too much in the second period, but after 57 minutes another series of passes right to left then back to the right, led to Ferguson's right field cross landing just too far in front of Kamanan, who had a frustrating night.
Charlton's only used substitute nearly provided a late equaliser when he jinked his way into the area, shot, and MacDonald just pout the ball wide, under pressure from Henry and O'Donoghue. There was no sign of Glenn Hoddle tonight, but John Gorman watched, as did Charlton manager Alan Curbishley. Spurs now have 4 consecutive away games, before facing Arsenal in a re-arranged fixture on Thursday March 21st.
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