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Spurs v Sunderland, (PL2 - 19.12.17)
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List
[e-mail Ray Lo]

      Premier League 2, First Division, 2017-18
       Lamex Stadium, Broadhall Way, Stevenage
          Tuesday 19th December 2017, 7pm

              SPURS    v   SUNDERLAND
          (White/Blue)     (Red/White)
              4-3-3          5-4-1

               0(0)           0(0)

       Brandon Austin  1  Max Stryjek
         George Marsh  2  Josh Robson
     Anthony Georgiou  3  Denver Hume
         Oliver Skipp  4  Tom Beadling(C)
    Christian Maghoma  5  Brandon Taylor
        Timothy Eyoma  6  Alex Storey
     Joseph Pritchard  7  Benjamin Kimpioka
          Luke Amos(C) 8  Ethan Robson
     Kazaiah Sterling  9  Andrew Nelson
      Shayon Harrison 10  Elliot Embleton
        Shilow Tracey 11  Chris Allan

           Jack Roles 12  Owen Gamble
            (7)81Mins     (10)81Mins
       Alfie Whiteman 13  Michael Woud
      Samuel Shashoua 14  Jack Diamond
            (9)62Mins     (7)60Mins
          Jaden Brown 15  Dan Wright
      Keanan Bennetts 16  Jake Hackett
           (11)79Mins     (9)75Mins

      Georgiou 89(KBA)    Taylor 76(Holding)
      Harrison 90+4(Foul)

         Wayne Burnett    Elliott Dickman

Attendance: 482

Referee: Gary Parsons
Assistants: Abigail Marriott & Matthew Morrison
Fourth Official: Stuart Cheek

It was a cold evening in Hertfordshire for the last development game of the year which saw Sunderland come to the Lamex in a bottom of the table match. Spurs had dropped to the bottom of the table with the Wearsiders a point better off. Having said that Sunderland have the same number of points as Chelsea and one less than Manchester United. A good win would see Spurs move out of the relegation zone. Last season Spurs won 1-0 thanks to an early goal from Sterling which led to an open game. Spurs lost the away game 2-1 earlier in the season having taken the lead. Both sides lost their previous games coming into this fixture. Spurs lost 4-2 at Manchester City and Sunderland lost 4-1 at home to leaders Liverpool.

Spurs lined up with Austin behind Maghoma and Eyoma with Marsh at right back and Georgiou on the left. Skipp anchored the midfield with Pritchard and Amos either side of him and a front three of Sterling flanked by Harrison on his right and Tracey on his left.

I missed the first half hour of the match but I was informed that nothing happened as the visitors sat back in defence literally marking man for man intent on stopping Spurs play. Stryjek saved from Harrison and Sterling had a couple of chances that he put wide before the break.

There were no changes for the start of the second half which saw Spurs continue trying to break the visitors down. Allan fired over on the hour mark before Kimpioka was taken off after he had a go at Maghoma following a tackle. After a couple of runs down the left by Georgiou, Spurs made their first change bringing on Shashoua for Sterling with Harrison moving into the centre.

Harrison tried his luck from distance bringing a save from Stryjek. Shashoua started a move playing forward to Harrison who released Georgiou down the left channel. Stryjek saved his shot and when the ball came back to the Spurs full back he saved the second effort.

Shashoua was making a difference with his tricky movement and Taylor was booked for grabbing him as he got past him. Spurs were now pushing for a goal and Pritchard fired over. Shashoua got down the left and whipped in a low cross that beat the keeper and gave Harrison the chance to score but for a last ditch block.

Bennetts then replaced Tracey as Spurs sought to keep the pressure on. Harrison fired over at the near post after Maghoma had headed the ball back from a corner. Spurs' last change saw Roles come on in place of Pritchard in midfield. Amos fired over from distance while Sunderland looked to break from loose balls. When Georgiou won the ball from behind Embleton the referee blew for a foul which saw the full back kick the ball away in anger and get booked for his action.

Austin saved from the free kick taken by Ethan Robson and the ball was moved quickly upfield and Bennetts drew a save from Stryjek. In the dying minutes Georgiou put in a free kick from near the corner flag and the keeper got to it just before Harrison. The Sunderland players told the referee that Harrison had left his foot in so he produced a yellow card for the Spurs striker.

Sunderland came for a point and left with it having stopped Spurs from playing their football for most of the game. It was not pretty to watch but did the job that they wanted to do. Their reward was a point. Chelsea beat Manchester City to move above both Manchester clubs as Spurs remain bottom into the new year. They have a chance to get off the bottom on the 3rd January when they travel to second place Leicester City. The game has been brought forward because of the FA Cup third round game against AFC Wimbledon.


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