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Match Reports
Bristol City U18s v Spurs U18s, 06.01.07

Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List.

       FA Premier Academy League – South
            Abbotts Leigh, Bristol
       Saturday 6th January 2007, 12 noon
       BRISTOL CITY    v    SPURS  
       (Red/White)      (Light Blue/Navy Blue)
          4-4-2             4-4-2
           1(1)              2(1)

          Lee Ballard  1  David Button
        Jordan Walker  2  Cian Hughton
       Billy Marshall  3  Joe Martin
    Christian Riberio  4  Daniel Hutchins  
         Will Gardner  5  Leigh Mills(C) 
         James Wilson  6  Cris Casey
            Iain Carr  7  Kyle Fraser-Allen
      Aaron Ledgister  8  Troy Archibald-Henville  
     Josh Klein-Davies 9  Tomas Pekhart
           Mark Magee 10  Luke Medley
        Frankie Artus 11  David Hutton

          Andrew Rose 12  Takura Mtandari
            (5)46Mins     (7)80Mins
                      13  Richard Stroud
                      14  Andros Townsend
                      15  Yaser Kasim
      Tristan Plummer 16
          Joel Parker 17   

             Artus 40     Mills 2
                          Pekhart 53 (pen)
   Ballard 52 - Foul                               

On a cold, wet morning Spurs re-assumed their push for the Academy title with an away game at Bristol City. The weather was not conducive to good football as it rained from beginning to end with the pitch very slippery and puddles of water to affect the ball. I was in the company of a couple of dozen damp souls for this “game”.

Spurs lined up with Casey partnering Mills at the back with Hughton on the right and Martin on the left. Archibald-Henville was in centre midfield alongside Hutchins with Fraser-Allen wide on the right and Hutton on the left. Medley joined Pekhart up front.

Spurs kicked off and quickly put pressure on the home side's goal winning a corner on the right. Hutton swung the ball over to the far post for Mills to head home. With players slipping and sliding the ref was being a little lenient at times yet still punished what appeared to be players who could not stop on the wet surface. Joe Martin seemed to slip more than most and when he lost his footing again Klein-Davies, who was a handful for the "Robins", was able to get down the wing and cross dangerously. With players having difficulty keeping their feet the ball came out to Artus on the edge of the area who volleyed the ball past Button.

City started the second half strongly and won a few corners as they pressured Spurs. They had a header cleared off the line in one scramble. Kasim had replaced Casey and went into midfield with Archibald-Henville dropping into the back four. Townsend came on early in the half for Medley pushing Hutton into a more advanced role. From one of the corners, the ball was cleared to Townsend on the left. He beat his marker and raced down the flank before playing the ball to Hutton galloping down the middle. With only the keeper to beat he was brought down by Ballard who received a yellow card. Pekhart hit the penalty to the keeper's right.

The home side kept pushing forward for much of the rest of the half and again saw the ball stopped on the line as they looked for another goal. Plummer missed a clear chance in the box with Spurs pinned in their own half and hardly troubling the Bristol keeper when they broke out. As the rain continued to fall the pitch became even more unplayable and it was a relief when the ref blew up for the end.

Not a game to show off skill, but it did show the resilience of our young players in difficult conditions to battle away and not give in. The three points means we go level with Reading in second place. The U-16‘s played at the same time on an adjacent pitch and lost 2-0. The next Academy game is at home to Birmingham City on the 13th kicking off at noon.

© Ray Lo

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