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Spurs U-19s v AS Roma, 08.01.14
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List
[e-mail Ray Lo]

U-19 Nutifood Cup 2014
Thong Nhat Stadium, Ho Chi Minh City
Wednesday 8th January 2014, 3.45pm

SPURS U-19 1(1) v 2(1) AS ROMA

Spurs(White/Blue) 4-4-2 Voss, Walkes(Vincent-Young 72), A. McQueen, Ball(C)(Akindayini 79), Ogilvie, Sonupe(Walker-Peters 76), Winks(Miller 61), Lesniak, Oduwa, Harrison, D. McQueen(Onomah 52)

Unused subs. - McGee, Dombaxe, Goddard, Amos.

Scorer Lesniak 29 (pen)

AS Roma(All Red) 4-5-1 Zonfrilli, Balasa, Sammartino, Somma, Boldor, Mazzitelli, Ferri, Battaglia(Adamo 59), Trani(Montefalcone 84), Verdi(Mariano 69), Shahinas(Masciangelo 69)

Scorers Verdi 28, Somma 48

Booked Battaglia 56(Holding)

Spurs and Roma came into this, the second of three games, with a win apiece so a win for either side would put them in the driving seat for the tournament. The stadium was only half full at the start of the game but filled up by the end in time for the next match which involved the home side. The capacity of the stadium I understand is around 18,000 which is good for this level.

Spurs started the game with a 4-4-2 formation with Voss in goal behind Alex McQueen and Dominic Ball with Walkes at right back and Ogilvie on the left. Lesniak and Winks started in centre midfield with Sonupe on the right and Oduwa on the left supporting Harrison and Darren McQueen up front.

Spurs kicked off the first half but found the Italian defence, with their big defenders, hard to break down. Roma were quick to break using the whole width of the pitch with Voss having to save from Verdi twice early on.

After ten minutes Winks had a long range effort fly over but Roma were always looking dangerous on the break. Verdi centred for Ferri to head over before Alex McQueen headed over from a corner. Voss had to save from Ferri while Shahinas drove over before Roma made the breakthrough. Verdi hit a dipping volley from 30 yards, which caught Voss off his line, going in off the underside of the crossbar.

The lead did not last long as Spurs responded with Sonupe attacking down the right. He got into the area and cut inside one defender before being caught by Sammatino for a penalty. Lesniak stepped up sending Zonfrilli the wrong way curling his left-footed kick to the right side.

Spurs began to get into the game more. Lesniak saw his effort from a corner deflected wide for another. Lesniak was again on the edge of the area when the corner came to him but again his effort was blocked. At the end of the half when a corner was not cleared Sonupe crossed for Alex McQueen to turn wide.

Roma regained the lead early in the second half when a cross was hit beyond the far post from the right. Trani whipped the ball in for Somma to turn in inside the six yard box.

This time there was no instant response, and Spurs took off Darren McQueen for Onomah switching to 4-3-3. Onomah played a through ball for Harrison to shoot into the side netting on his first involvement.

Trani centred for Ferri to head wide before Sonupe pulled the ball back for Lesniak but his effort was blocked. Battaglia was booked for pulling Onomah back on the edge of the area as Spurs pushed forward. Ogilvie was getting forward more and had a shot go wide. Roma were now sitting back defending deep but quick to break with Voss having to make a save while another strike flew over.

Winks was replaced by Miller while Roma made changes to strengthen their defence. Onomah fired wide before Spurs changed their right side with Vincent-Young replacing Walkes at right back and Walker-Peters coming on for Sonupe in front of him.

Masciangelo fired over from a half-cleared corner while Miller fired wide at the other end. Akindayini came on for Ball to add extra weight up front while Alex McQueen was also pushed up as Spurs went all out for an equaliser. Roma were still dangerous on the break and Ferri fired wide and Adamo had an effort over the bar. With time running out Oduwa drew a save from Onomah's cross before there was a scramble in the area when Ogilvie put the ball in with a number of efforts blocked by the massed defenders. In added time Oduwa put in a centre that McQueen turned onto the post before being cleared for a corner. Voss was coming up for set pieces now and was just beaten to the ball by his opposite number right at the end.

Roma always looked the better side on the day. Spurs failed in the death or glory end of the game and as in the IMG Cup before Christmas Alex McQueen was denied a last gasp goal. Roma only need a draw in their last game against Japan to win the tournament. Japan who easily beat Vietnam 7-0 today can win it if they can beat the Italians on Friday. Spurs play Vietnam in the last game to see if they can finish second or third. It will be a packed stadium as the support for the home side has been good.

Ray

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