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Reading Reserves v Spurs Reserves, 28.04.08

Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List
[e-mail Ray Lo]

         Premier Reserve League, South                         
          Recreation Ground, Aldershot                                 
          Monday 28th April 2008, 7pm
        READING       v       SPURS
     (Blue/White)           (All Yellow)
         4-4-2                4-4-2
          2(0)                 2(1)
       Adam Federici  1 David Button
        Graeme Murty  2 Adam Smith
       Daniel Spence  3 Daniel Hutchins
  Brynjar Gunnarsson  4 Yaser Kasim
        Adam Bygrave  5 Troy 
 Ulises De La Cruz(C) 6 Dorian Dervite
        Julian Kelly  7 Kyle Fraser-Allen
         James Henry  8 Jake Livermore
          Jimmy Kebe  9 Tomas Pekhart
          John Oster 10 Ryan Mason
         Gary Frewen 11 Jonathan Obika
    Nicholas Bignall 12 Tommy Forecast
     Mikkel Andersen 13 Takura Mtandari
       Clovis Kamdjo 14 Andros Townsend
       Jahson Downes 15 David Hutton
     Mitchell Bryant 16 Alex Olsen

            Kebe 77     Pekhart 38
           Oster 82     Livermore 50

         B.McDermott    C.Allen

Ref:- A.Sainsbury
L.Forrester, J.Simpson, I.Thomson

Attendance:- 300

It was a cool evening with heavy showers throughout the game. It rained so hard that we were treated to two rainbows. Thankfully there were no hailstones as happened when I came last time. With the chance of catching Villa at the top gone last week, Reading fielded a weaker side than in the reverse fixture, starting with only six first team players.

Spurs lined up with Button in goal and Archibald-Henville and Dervite at the back. Smith was at right back and Hutchins on the left. Livermore and Kasim played in the centre of midfield with Fraser-Allen on the right wing and Obika on the left. Mason played behind Pekhart up front.

Spurs defended the left end kicking down the slope but with the sun in their eyes - this was before the heavens opened. Reading started strongly with Button saving a Bygrave header at a corner and then saving from Henry at the expense of a corner. Spurs first chance came a third of the way into the half when Kasim fired wide. A good run down the wing by Fraser-Allen produced a cross that Pekhart go a touch too which reached Obika on the far post. Unfortunately the ball was deflected into his feet and he could only lift it over the bar.

Spurs were now beginning to get into a rhythm and Fraser-Allen was getting the better of Spence on the right. Pekhart played a one-two which took him through but Frederici turned his shot away for a corner. Button was called on to save from Oster and Henry fired wide before Pekhart was tripped as he dribbled towards goal. Livermore took the kick and while it was on target had no power to beat Federici. Spurs next attack saw Obika get clear of Murty and square the ball for Pekhart to finish with a low drive. Mason then put a chance over minutes later before Gunnarsson drove over from distance. In added time a cross from Kelly found Henry in space, but he put the ball over the bar from six yards.

Spurs started the second half strongly and doubled their lead inside five minutes when Obika dribbled into the area and laid the ball back for Livermore to drive low through the crowd into the far corner. Kebe put an effort over as the home side struggled to get back into the game. The Reading coach sent on Bignall to add a physical presence to their attack which he did well, as both centre backs can testify. Allen made a straight swap when he sent on Hutton for Obika and he almost setup a third goal with a good cross from the left.

Reading got back into the game from a free kick deep on the right. Murty flighted the ball to the far post where Kebe headed in. Allen replaced Mason with Mtandari to strengthen the midfield but the Royals had their tails up. When Bignall caught Archibald-Henville in the face it opened up the Spurs defence. As Troy was getting to his feet the ball was played inside and Dervite was caught trying to cover, allowing Oster to drive the ball high into the net from the edge of the area.

Reading almost won it when Kelly was sent down the right and his cross was headed in at the near post by Henry only for the linesman to flag either for offside or the ball going out of play. Fraser-Allen came inside but fired wide just as Allen made his last change. He took off Smith for another attacker in Olsen as both sides looked for a winner. Reading came closest when Bignall fired wide from just six yards with only Button to beat.

This was a good result by Spurs who had started hesitantly until they began to string passes together. Fraser-Allen outpaced the full back on the right and with the Reading defence pushing up to the halfway line, he should have been used more. Instead it was Obika who got behind them to set up the opening goal. I'm sure they will disappointed to lose a two goal lead. Spurs finish the season in 8th place in a season that saw the end of the Reserve side that did so well in winning this league two years ago. The replacements have taken time to settle in but began to gel in the latter part of the season producing good performances here and at the gooners as well as beating the league winners.

Most of tonight's players will be playing in various tournaments before next season starting with the first in Switzerland next month. After hosting one at the Lodge they go to France, both in May, before a break until August and Eurofoot in Belgium and a tournament in Santiago.


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