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Match Reports
Spurs U17s v Arsenal U17s, 11.10.03

Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List

FA Premier Academy U-17 League
Spurs Lodge, Chigwell, Essex
Saturday 11th October 2003, 11am

SPURS 2(0) Arsenal 0(0)

Unfortunately I missed the first half hour of the game due to going to the wrong place (must read the programme notes). Again there were no team sheets so had to crib the names from someone else - apologies for any errors.

SPURS (4-4-2) - Tommy Forecast, Mark Riley, Mark Wright, Charlie Lee, Tommy Welch, Phil Ifil, Jamie O'Hara, Stuart Lewis (Maghoma 80), Andy Barcham (Dawkins 85), Danny Stevens ( Mascarenhas 80), Charlie Daniels(C)

Unused subs - Button (gk), unknown

Scorer - Barcham 57, 69

Booked - Welch (Late tackle, 45)

ARSENAL(4-4-2) - Unknown

Booked - No. 6 (late tackle followed by not retreating 10 yds for the freekick, [2 yellows] 30)

It was a bright sunny morning when I finally got to the Lodge to join a good sized crowd for this North London derby. Fellow listee Paul Smith told me about the sending off which I had missed during half-time so I was unaware that we had a man advantage.

We were playing some good passing football with players having time on the ball and with the mid-field winning lots of tackles, which wasn't surprising seeing we had an extra player. Spurs, playing right to left, had Welch and Ifil in defence with Riley on the right and Wright on the left. Lee and O'Hara ran the mid-field with Lewis and Daniels outside them with the tiny Stevens partnering Barcham up front.

The best player on the pitch was Jamie O'Hara who was all over the midfield starting attacks and winning the ball against his old mates, he usually does well against the Gooners. In a good first half (at least the 15 minutes that I saw). The back four looked solid with Welch doing a great job at the heart of it, Welch made one mistake at the end of the half when the 10 got past him and he brought him down to stop him getting away receiving a caution from the ref.

Jimmy Neighbour must have had a word during the interval about having a man advantage as they went for the visitors from the off mainly prompted by O'Hara, and with Lee sitting in front of the back four it was all one way traffic. The breakthrough came just before the hour when O'Hara crossing from the right, Stevens prevented the defender from clearing at the far post allowing Barcham to volley the lose ball in off the keeper.

Efforts from Stevens, O'Hara, Daniels and Barcham followed before the home side finished the Gooners off with Barchams' second of the game, setup by Stevens. The Gunners brought on a striker and went to three at the back and this provided some action at the spurs end without looking like they would score, a couple of corners and a freekick. Spurs took off the hard working Stevens and Lewis for mid-fielders Mascarenhas and Maghoma pushing O'Hara up behind Barcham. Barcham had a couple more chances to get his third before he was replaced by Dawkins.

I don't know how well the visitors played in the first half hour before going down to ten men, but they were hardly in the game from the time that I arrived until the final whistle. They are a tall rangy side who were all around six feet before the second sub came on. The sight of Danny Stevens giving away more than a foot in height to his marker and still running rings round them was great to see and it was he who got in to block a clearance that led to the first goal.

After a couple of heavy defeats Jimmy Neighbour must be happy with the result and the way they played. Next week they go to Birmingham while the U-19s entertain Ipswich at the lodge.

With Colin Calderwood taking over at Northampton Town it was interesting to see Clive Allen with David Pleat watching the game, fueling some discussion about new coaches.

Ray

Ray Lo

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