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Reading U-18s v Spurs U-18s, 28.01.12
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List
[e-mail Ray Lo]


             FA Premier Academy, Group B
             Hogwood Park, Finchampstead
                       Berks.

             Saturday 28th January 2012
                       11.30am

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

                 4(2)              2(2)

               Jon Henly  1 Billy Granger
             Niall Keown  2 Alex McQueen
           Shane Griffin  3 Conor Olgilvie
                          4 Oliver Modeste
        Matt Partridge(C) 5 William Ekong(C)
              Jake Cooper 6 Ruben Lameiras
             Ryan Edwards 7 Victor Zapata-Caicedo
          Aaron Tishibola 8 Jack Munns
           Dominic Samuel 9 Grant Ward
             Craig Tanner10 Mason Bush
              Daniel Carr11 Daniel Akindayini

                         12 James Yeboah
              (11)75Mins. 
                         13 Liam Prestley
                         14 Kenneth McEvoy
               (4)15Mins.   (11)38Mins.
             Ben Jefford 15 Roman Michael-Percil
                         16 Dominic Ball
                            (3)70Mins.

Scorers :-
   Carr 1                   Ward 6
   Samuel 43 pen, 51, 66    Bush 20

Booked:-
   Partridge 75(Holding)    Lameiras 57(Pull)
   Tishibola 76(Pull)       Ball 81(Trip)

Coach:-
   E. Dolan                 A. Inglethorpe
It was a chilly morning which had left a frost on the ground, so the pitch was hard and heavy. Spurs arrived to play the second placed team in the group who were fresh from victory over the leaders Coventry last week. As there was no team sheet I have had to work out the teams which may have mistakes for which I apologise. I wish all clubs would give out team sheets.

Spurs lined up with Ekong and Modeste at the back and McQueen on the right and Ogilvie on the left. Lameiras and Munns started in the centre of midfield with Zapata on the right flank and Akindayini on the left. Bush supported Ward up front.

Spurs kicked off attacking the south end but lost the ball which was taken down the right wing and crossed into the near post. Samuel headed on for Carr to head home at the far post. The goal was timed at 24 seconds.

While the visitors were still coming to terms with Reading's more physical style of play Samuel drew a save from Granger. A long ball found Bush on the right who got the better of Griffin to fire in a low cross which Ward (arriving at the far post) turned in for the equaliser. Henley saved from Bush before Zapata fired over.

Zapata turned in a cross from the left but was ruled out for offside. Reading made an early change to their midfield as the visitors began to string passes together. Bush got through the left channel and drove the ball in to put Spurs in front. Henly got his hands to it but the ball went in off Griffin. Reading responded with Samuels driving wide.

Ward also fired wide before Granger saved Tanner's free kick. McEvoy replaced Akindayini who could not make any headway on the left against Keown. Cooper headed wide from a corner. Reading attacked down the left and when the ball was played into the area the ref penalised Ekong for pulling back Tanner. It was a soft penalty which the local ref saw as more of a foul than the heavy challenges that the home side made throughout the game. The "Royals" top scorer Samuel stepped up to send Granger the wrong way scoring to his left.

There were no changes for the start of the second half as the home side pushed forward early. Tanner drew a save from Granger. When Spurs lost the ball in midfield it was played up to Samuel on the edge of the area. He moved the ball to his right and blasted in high into the net to put the home side back in front.

Lameiras collected a yellow card for pulling back Tanner having lost the ball. Zapata saw his effort saved and Tishibola was denied by Granger before Reading increased their lead. Carr got down the left and crossed for Samuel to turn in at the far post.

Zapata drew a save from Henly before Inglethorpe replaced Ogilvie with Ball in an attempt to get back into the game. Tanner fired in a shot that was saved but when Zapata attempted to get down the left he was taken into touch by Partridge. The ref gave the throw-in Spurs' way but then showed the Reading captain a yellow card as he prevented the Spurs player from taking it quickly.

A cross from the left found McEvoy at the far post. His effort was saved by the keeper, then the ball rebounded back of a defender and cleared off the line. As Spurs tried to return the ball into the danger area, Tishibola was booked for a foul. Ball was next in the ref's book for a trip on Tishibola in the centre circle. Granger saved a header from Tishibola and Partridge headed wide from a corner as the game drew to a close.

It is always a tough battle playing Reading as it takes a lot for the officials to penalise them on their own ground. Spurs tried to play their normal passing game but the home side out-muscled them and made the most of their chances. Spurs were not able to adapt their game to cope with the style of Reading but came close. Bush stood out the most for me with both full backs doing well in attack.

The defeat drops Spurs below Leicester City into fourth place. There is no match next Saturday so the next game is on the 11th February when Spurs go to Villa for a midday kick off. During the week the U-19's will be playing Liverpool in the NextGen Q/F at the Lane. Some of the U-18's that did not play today may be involved.

Ray

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