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Match Reports
Spurs U 17s 2 Charlton U 17s 1, 14.02.04

Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List

FA Premier Academy League Under -17
Spurs Lodge, Luxborough Lane, Chigwell
Saturday 14th February 2004, ko. 11am

SPURS (4-4-2) - Possible line-up - Button, Riley, Wright, Lee(C)Welch, Peprah, Mascarenhas(Heller 80), Lewis, Dawkins(Seanla 60), (White/Blue) Maghoma, Stevens(Harvey 85)

CHARLTON (4-4-2) - As usual because of the lack of teamsheets I am unable to give you the visitors line-up except to say that Lawrie and a couple of Jack's were in defence with Danny, Ali and Mos were in midfield with Sodje up front.

Scorers - Sodje 31, Maghoma 38, Seanla 65

Booked - Jack (5) 68 (late), Danny(6) 73 (late)

It was an overcast sky with a chill in the air and dew on the ground which was a little heavy as the two teams took to the field watched by a smallish crowd. Spurs lined up with Tom Welch and Nathan Peprah at the back with Chris Riley on the right and Mark Wright on the left in front of David Button. Charlie Lee and Jack Maghoma sat in central midfield with Brian Mascarenhas on the right and Stuart Lewis on the left supporting the front pair of Simon Dawkins and Danny Stevens.

The home side defended the North end and soon put pressure on the visitors goal with Stevens and Lewis going close before the Valiants responded and caused concern on the bench. The first half settled into a midfield contest with Spurs playing some lovely passing despite the visitors closing them down quickly with both defences coping well, with the Charlton 5 (Jack) outstanding. Not only did he tower over the rest of the players on the pitch he also used it to good effect especially at deadball situations.

The deadlock was broken when a long ball was not dealt with by Welch and Sodje collected it and drove in from the edge of the box low to Button's right. Having missed a couple of good chances already he was delighted as all could see. This lead to a spell of Charlton pressure before Maghoma picked up a loose ball in the centre circle advanced before hitting a shot from 25yds, which the visiting keeper had covered all the way until it went through his hands into the far corner. Lewis had a chance to increase the lead in stoppage time but hit his shot weakly into the keepers hands.

Charlton started the second half brightly and came close after five minutes when Wright had to clear off the line. The challenges became more physical as the visitors tried to maintain a grip on the midfield. Jimmy Neighbour replaced the ineffective Dawkins for the livelier Seanla on the hour and it was he who latched onto the loose ball from Stevens' blocked shot to put the ball in the net at the second attempt.

While not being a dirty game some of the tackling got pretty physical and it was not surprising that the ref finally got his card out, booking two of the visitors where a couple of home players could have joined them as well as a couple more of the visitors. It was more of a hard fought game which stifled the more creative play. Neighbour made a couple of more changes as he looked to hold what he had finishing with five in midfield.

Good performances from Lee and Lewis in the midfield battle and Seanla when he came on, as he finally was able to stretch the visitors centre backs creating gaps which Danny Stevens made the opening for the winning goal. Next week the U-17's are away to Millwall and the U-19's are also away to leaders Southampton. The Reserves are also away to Watford on Wednesday at Vicarage Road.

Ray

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