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Sunderland U-18s v Spurs U-18s, 12.03.16
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List.

          Premier U-18 League Play-offs 2015-16
              Academy of Light, Cleadon
            Saturday 12th March 2016, 11am.

                SUNDERLAND  v     SPURS
               (Red/White)     (All Purple)
                 4-2-3-1         4-2-3-1

                  3(0)             0(0)

              Micheal Woud  1 Thomas McDermott
               Owen Gamble  2 Joseph Muscatt
            Oscar Krusnell  3 Jaden Brown
             Daniel Wright  4 Charlie Owens
                 Dan Casey  5 Joy Mukena
               Alex Storey  6 Japhet Tanganga(C)
             Luke Molyneux  7 Keanan Bennetts
            Daniel Pybus(C) 8 Jack Roles
                 Josh Maja  9 Kazaiah Sterling
               Chris Allan 10 Dylan Duncan
           Elliot Embleton 11 Aramide Oteh

             Jordan Hickey 12 George Marsh
         Cameron McCulloch 13
              Jack Diamond 14 Nicholas Tsaroulla
                (10)46Mins    (11)58Mins
           Jean Yves Poame 15 Shilow Tracey
                 (9)82Mins    (7)58Mins
              Jake Hackett 16

        Diamond 47
        Pybus 58, pen 80 

        Krusnell 53(Pull)     Muscatt 66(Foul)
        Pybus 74(Pull)

        E. Dickman            K. McKenna 

It was a misty morning for the trip up to Sunderland for the third play-off game. Due to the U-21 game the previous evening Spurs travelled with a small squad to face the "Black Cats" who had just missed out on a fourth place finish in the regular season. Sunderland lost their opening game to local rivals Middlesbrough 1-0 while Spurs have won one and lost one so far.

Spurs lined up with McDermott in goal behind Mukena and Tanganga with Muscatt at right back and Brown on the left. Owens anchored the midfield with Roles alongside him while Duncan was ahead of them flanked by Bennetts on the right wing and Oteh on the left in support of Sterling up front. There were only three subs on the bench with no back-up keeper.

Spurs kicked off attacking the North end and had some early attacks down the right by Bennetts before he took a whack from Krusnell. Sterling got between the two centre-backs but a goal-saving tackle prevented him getting off a shot. Mukena carried the ball out from the back and passed to Owens who played in Bennetts on the right while Mukena continued his run into the area to receive the cross but fired wide. Woud saved from Bennetts with Oteh latching on to the rebound but his effort was blocked. Woud saved from Sterling at the expence of a corner.

Embleton broke down the left and drew a save from McDermott and Wright played in Molyneux to fire wide as the home side began to get into the game. As the half ended Pybus fired wide and Allan also shot wide when played in by Gamble.

Sunderland replaced Allan with Diamond for the start of the second half. He had some defending to do, dumping Muscatt on the floor as he was getting past. Diamond made a telling contribution at the other end, getting his head to Molyneux's cross at the far post for a 1-0 lead.

Roles' free kick was saved at the near post by Woud after Brown was fouled attacking through the left channel. The referee booked Krusnell for pulling back Bennetts when he looked as if he had got through as Spurs pushed forward looking for the equaliser. They got caught out again when Pybus played a quick one two with Maja to get into the area and finish past McDermott for 2-0.

That was the trigger for Spurs to make a double change with Tracey replacing Bennetts on the right and Tsaroulla taking over from Oteh on the left.

Roles played in Sterling but Woud was out quickly to save at his feet. Sunderland continued to look for quick breaks and Muscatt was booked stopping one break. Spurs made their last change with Duncan being replaced by Marsh allowing Roles to move up in surpport of the attack.

Pybus was booked for stopping Sterling getting through on goal by pulling him back. Diamond fired over before Embleton got down the left and was fouled in the area to win a penalty. Pybus stepped up to beat McDermott low to his right.

Spurs continued to press with Roles firing over after Brown got to the line. Another break saw Molyneux fire wide after Maja played him in. Muscatt got forward to draw a save from Woud. Owens fired wide before Woud saved twice from Tsaroulla as Spurs pushed for a goal. The last chance fell to Roles who was played in by Brown but fired wide.

This was a heavy defeat for a young Spurs side who played the better football. Had it not been for good defending by Sunderland, Spurs should have taken the points. They showed their inexperience in getting caught out when pushing forward which has happened a few times before. Next Saturday Spurs entertain Wolverhampton Wanderers at Hotspur Way before travelling to the U-19 International Cup tournament in Dusseldorf over the Easter weekend.


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