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Man Utd U-18s v Spurs U-18s, 13.10.12
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List
[e-mail Ray Lo]


        FA Premier U-18 Academy League, Group 2
     Manchester United Training Ground, Carrington
          Saturday 13th October 2012, 11am

           MAN. UTD      v      SPURS 
         (Red/White)         (All White)
            4-4-2               4-3-3

             3(0)                1(1)

      Pierluigi Gollini  1  Luke McGee
            Donald Love  2  Zodel Brown
           Louis Rowley  3  Kane Vincent-Young
        Liam Grimshaw(C) 4  Laste Dombaxe
          Declan Dalley  5  Alex McQueen
             James Weir  6  Conor Ogilvie
            Jack Barmby  7  Grant Ward
            Mats Daehli  8  Joshua Onomah
           James Wilson  9  Shaquile Coulthirst(C)
        Andreas Pereira 10  Harry Winks
            Kenji Gorre 11  Darren McQueen

      Matthew Wilkinson 12  Roman Michael-Percil
                            (6)55Mins.
           Joel Pereira 13  Liam Priestley
          Joshua Harrop 14  Mason Bush
                            (7)73Mins.
         Patrick McNair 15  Sam Smith
                            (10)84Mins.

Scorers:-
         Gorre 49           Onomah 15
         Wilson 71, 75

Coaches:-
         P. McGuinness      A. Inglethorpe 

Referee:- N. D'Arcy
Assistants:- P. Kordbacheh & D. Ross
This was my first visit to United's training ground which is in the middle of a big refurbishment. The pitch was good but the surrounding areas were boggy and we were plagued with midges. They do have a small 100 seater stand which is better than what Chelsea have. They did produce a teamsheet of their team but listed our Academy squad with plenty of spelling mistakes, but at least they tried.

Spurs lined up with McGee in goal behind Alex McQueen and Ogilvie with two U-16 full backs in Brown on the right and Vincent-Young on the left. The midfield trio was Dombaxe, Onomah and Winks with Darren McQueen up front with Coulthirst on his left and Ward, back from injury, on the right flank. International call-ups were the reason for most of the changes.

Spurs defended the north end in the first half but were soon on the attack pinning the home side back in a one-sided half. Ward made a number of good early runs down the right putting in crosses that kept the United defenders on their toes. From a corner following one of these Ogilvie laid the ball off for Alex McQueen to hit a low shot that Gollini saved to his left.

Darren McQueen ran onto a ball into the area but the United central defenders came together to block his effort and Onomah following him in got his foot to the ball to put into the net.

The Reds responded with Barmby making a run and shot that flew over before being presented with another chance at the far post that McGee saved for a corner. From the corner, Dalley headed into McGee's hands.

Spurs were content to move the ball around looking for an opening with the home midfield chasing shadows for much of the time. Dombaxe drew a save from one of those openings. Brown supported Ward well on the right flank but had a difficult time against Gorre and when he conceded a free kick Pereira brought a good save from McGee.

Dombaxe received a short corner and chipped the ball into the middle for Winks to draw a save from Gollini. Barmby had a free kick that McGee saved and Dombaxe fired over from a pass by Darren McQueen. McQueen himself saw his effort blocked for a corner. From that corner Dombaxe crossed for Darren McQueen who laid it back for his cousin Alex to hit over. A mistake let in Wilson for a chance that McGee saved.

There were no changes for the second half but United changed tack and sought to pressure the player on the ball and not let him have the chance to play the ball as in the first half.

Wilson picked up a loose ball from the defence and with only the keeper to beat fired over. Love, up in support, struck the post and McGee saved Pereira's free kick. A diagonal ball from Barmby found Gorre one on one with Brown. The winger slipped the full back and scored at the near post.

Ogilvie was caught twice in quick succession and had to go off. He was replaced by Michael-Percil who went to the right of Darren McQueen up front with Ward moving into the midfield to allow Dombaxe to drop into the back four. Ogilvie had been almost unbeatable at the back and his loss was keenly felt.

Coulthirst headed a corner out only to Love who drove it back in low but McGee saved at his left post. Barmby fired over from way out on the right before Gorre had his effort saved.

Coulthirst drew a save from Gollini before Brown got down the right and crossed for Ward to turn the ball wide. United were still sitting deep drawing Spurs forward looking to counter, as when Love won the ball on the edge of his own area and took it into the Spurs half before playing in Pereira to draw a save from McGee. Pereira played in Wilson moving to his left. McGee came out quickly to save at his feet but the striker was able to flick the ball over his hand and despite Vincent-Young's effort, the ball just crossed the line to put the home side in front.

The tiring Ward was replaced by Mason Bush, before United increased their lead when Love counter-attacked down the right pulling the ball back for Wilson to turn and fire home.

The home side were now in control with Barmby firing his free kick wide. Inglethorpe made his last change when Winks had to go off, and was replaced by Smith. McGee saved from Barmby and then Gorre from the resulting corner. Gorre also fired wide. Spurs had the last chance when Dombaxe's free kick hit the left corner of the woodwork.

This was a game of two halves with Spurs on top in the first and United in the second. Spurs failed to convert more of their chances to put the game out of sight which allowed the home side the chance to win it in the second. The younger lads tired in the second half and Ward on his first game back was not expected to last the game. United were stronger and used that strength in the second period to break up Spurs passing game.

The result leaves Spurs bottom of the group with a trip to Sunderland next week. I will miss that game due to the visit of Chelsea to the Lane on that day. I am hoping to see the U-21's play Southampton (Away) on Monday afternoon.

Ray

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