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Spurs U-21s v West Ham U-21s, 18.08.14
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List
[e-mail Ray Lo]


            Premier U-21 League 2014-15
          Lamex Stadium, Stevenage, Herts. 
           Monday 18th August 2014, 7pm.

             SPURS      v   WEST HAM UTD
          (White/Blue)     (Claret/Blue)
             4-3-3            4-3-3

              2(1)             1(0)

            Harry Voss  1  Raphael Spiegel
       Ryan Fredericks  2  Sam Westley
          Alex McQueen  3  Dan Potts(C)
        Thomas Carroll  4  Diego Poyet
          Dominic Ball  5  Reece Oxford
     Milos Veljkovic(C) 6  Reece Burke
       Emmanuel Sonupe  7  Blair Turgott
           Harry Winks  8  Josh Cullen
     Daniel Akindayini  9  Elliot Lee
         Joshua Onomah 10  Kieran Bywater
     Cristian Ceballos 11  Sebastien Lletget

          Nathan Oduwa 12  Matthias Fanimo
             (7)46Mins     (11)63Mins
         Thomas Glover 13  Tim Brown
         Filip Lesniak 14  Lewis Page
            (10)68Mins
        William Miller 15  Kieran Sadler
            (11)75Mins     (7)75Mins
  Souleymane Coulibaly 16  Jordan Brown
                           (8)84Mins

Scorers:- 
        Akindayini 37      Bywater 52
        Ceballos 74

Coaches:-
        U. Ehiogu          N. Haycock

Referee: A. Young
Assistants: R. Bloy & S. Cheek
Fourth Official: L. Grimsey

Attendance: 794

Spurs return to Stevenage to play most of their home games this season having signed off last season with a 4-2 win over Reading at the Lamex. The opening fixture this season was West Ham, who we did not meet at home last season. With a Europa League tie in Cyprus later in the week, Spurs fielded a young side with Harry Voss making a first appearance in goal and a first start for winger Emmanuel Sonupe. Spurs lined up with Ball and Veljkovic at the back with Fredericks at right back and McQueen on the left. Carroll anchored the midfield with Winks and Onomah while Sonupe and Ceballos supported Akindayini in attack.

Spurs defended the North end in the first half as both sides moved the ball quickly through the midfield where most of the play took place. Neither side made much headway during the half as both sides closed down quickly while the defences mopped up when they got through.

It was over a quarter of an hour before we saw the first real chance when Akindayini got into the area, but his effort was deflected wide for a corner. Potts got forward to fire well over the bar for West Ham. Lee fired over from a cross by Turgott, before Spurs almost broke the deadlock. Sonupe played a one-two with Onomah before driving in a low shot that was saved by Spiegel for a corner. The left side corner found its way to Ceballos on the far side who cut inside and curled his effort inside the far post where Spiegel pushed the ball away for another corner with Akindayini following up.

Lee headed a free kick wide before Spurs took the lead. With the West Ham defence pushing up, Onomah lifted the ball over them for Akindayini to run through and score past the advancing keeper. Spurs shaded the first half with the goal advantage to show for it.

Spurs replaced Sonupe with Oduwa for the start of the second half which saw both sides making better use of the wide areas to create more chances, opening up the game more. Oduwa got down the right to the line only to pull the ball back behind Akindayini. Ceballos whipped in a low cross from the left that went across the goalmouth without anyone getting a touch.

Spurs paid for those misses when Ceballos conceded a free kick on the right. Bywater scored, curling the ball inside the far post.

Akindayini had a great chance to restore Spurs' lead when the ball was deflected to him ten yards out with only the keeper to beat. The striker curled it outside the far post. The Hammers pushed forward looking for a second with Voss saving from Lee twice in two minutes.

Burke went wide from a corner, before Oduwa got free on the right and drove just wide of the far post with Ceballos failing to make contact sliding in. Miller replaced Onomah in midfield before Lee fired wide for the visitors. With the Hammers defending their eighteen yard line, Veljkovic played a long ball over the top for Ceballos, who had made a diagonal run from the right to beat the offside trap. The Spanish winger controlled the ball before finishing past Spiegel for Spurs' second.

Both sides made a change with Spurs sending on the more defensive Lesniak for Ceballos. Miller released Oduwa for a chance that was saved before they saw out the game with West Ham pushing for a second goal. Late sub Brown fired wide as Spurs held out to take the points.

This was a tough opening game between two evenly matched sides with Spurs coming out on top. Most of the players have played each other over the last two years at U-18, U-19 and U-21 level with Spurs getting the better of most of the encounters which have all been close apart from the 5-2 win in the Youth Cup. At Eurofoot last year it went to penalties during which Voss was injured.

Next Monday evening Spurs travel to the King Power Stadium to play Leicester who lost their opening match this evening 2-3 to Everton. (Ed:- This game has now been postponed)

Ray

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