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Reading U-18s v Spurs U-18s, 31.10.09
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List
[e-mail Ray Lo]

         Premier Academy League 
    Hogwood Park, Finchampstead, RG40 
   Saturday 31st October 2009, 11.30am

      READING       v        SPURS 
   (Blue/White)             (All Blue)
       4-4-2                  4-4-2

        0(0)                 4(3)

   Dean Santangelo  1 Jamie Butler
       Nick Arnold  2 Adam Smith
                    3 Sam Cox
      John Goddard  4 Jake Nicholson
   Angus MacDonald  5 Nathan Byrne
        Jack Mills  6 Calum Butcher
     Harry Harding  7 Ryan Fredericks
      Lawson D'ath  8 Dean Parrett
Abdulai Bell-Baggie 9 Harry Kane(C)
    Jacob Wallcott 10 John Bostock
             Obita 11 Paul-Jose M'Poku

                   12 Mirko Ranieri
                   13 Paul McBride
                   14 Kudos Oyenuga
                   15 Tom Carroll
                   16 Jesse Waller-Lassen

Scorers -  
                      Kane 17  
                      M'Poku 20, 39
                      Fredericks 89 

    MacDonald 77(Late)

Sent off 
   Goddard 51(Dangerous Play)

Coaches - 
         E. Dolan     A. Inglethorpe

Ref  R. Kendall

It was a cloudy morning with a soaking pitch from overnight rain in Berkshire for this mornings match. There was only a small crowd to see Spurs continue the chase of Leicester City.

Spurs lined up with Butcher and Byrne at the back with Smith on the right and Cox on the left. Parrett joined Nicholson in the centre of midfield with Fredericks on the right wing and M'Poku on the left. Bostock supported Kane up front.

Spurs kicked off attacking the north end and after a short spell of home pressure began to pass their way through the home defence. Bell-Baggie had an effort over the bar and another one saved by Butler. Kane had a free kick just left of centre that was saved before he opened the scoring. M'Poku had got away on the left wing and crossed low into the area where Kane at full stretch turned the ball into the net at the near post.

The second goal arrived soon after when Fredericks got down the right and crossed from the line. The keeper got a touch but it carried on to M'Poku at the far post who had a simple finish. Kane fired wide before the home side had another chance from a free kick floated in from the right. Butler came out to challenge for the ball with a Reading attacker and both missed it.

Parrett tried a snap shot that went high and wide before Bell-Baggie got down the right channel but saw his effort saved by Butler. Kane saw his drive turned away for a corner which Parrett took and found Byrne at the far post, but his header went wide. Smith broke up an attack on the right and hit a long diagonal ball to M'Poku clear on the left who advanced and beat the keeper at his near post from about fifteen yards. Bell-Baggie hit another free kick over from the right side.

Reading made one change for the start of the second half with the visitors continuing to press. Smith exchanged passes to get behind the defence on the right and crossed for Kane who fired over. Reading's problems got worse when Goddard dived in and caught M'Poku high and late to receive a straight red card. M'Poku was okay but Spurs took their foot off the gas allowing the home side to reorganise.

Bell-Baggie had an effort that went wide and a free kick that flew over either side of a Kane strike that was saved. He then got down the right channel for a one-on-one with Butler. The keeper spread himself to block his effort and the rebound. Bostock fired over before Inglethorpe made his first substitution taking off Butcher for Carroll who went over to the left back position with Cox moving inside. The next change was forced on him when Parrett took a knock and was replaced by Oyenuga who went upfront with Bostock dropping into midfield. Waller-Lassen came on in place of Smith shortly after which could have backfired with two players later needing treatment.

Oyenuga was soon in action when his effort was blocked and came out to Nicholson who drove the ball back from 25 yards into the keeper's arms. Bostock had an effort saved before Nicholson was caught late by MacDonald who was booked. Nicholson continued but he was limping for a while after. Spurs were content to hold the ball longer waiting for openings with the home side doing a lot of chasing to win it back. When they did D'ath saw his effort blocked from a free kick and one of the subs fired over. Bostock went down tackling back and required treatment before continuing. Spurs' patience was rewarded with another goal. The ball was held up by Oyenuga before playing out to Fredericks on the left who had space to curl the ball around the keeper into the far side. He had another effort that flew over before the final whistle.

This was a good result that did not flatter Spurs as their one touch passing game is coming together nicely. Fredericks' raw talent down the wing is being better harnessed and he linked well with Smith to provide crosses aplenty. Nicholson is becoming a good defensive midfield player with only the centre-back positions of concern as Byrne and Cox are not the tallest and Butcher is filling in as an over-age player.

Next week Spurs entertain the MK Dons at the Lodge and need to keep winning if they have any chance of catching Leicester who won again today.


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