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Leicester U-18s v Spurs U-18s, 25.09.10
Courtesy of:- Ray Lo, and the Spurs List.

       Premier Academy League, Group B
Leicester City Academy, Belvoir Drive, Aylestone
     Saturday 25th September 2010, 12am

      (Blue/White)       (White/Blue)
         4-4-2              4-4-2

          1(0)               0(0)

         Raajan Gill  1 Jordan Archer
      Ellis Trebbutt  2 Callum Tapping
         George Taft  3 Kevin Stewart
               Mills  4 Laste Dombaxe(C)
      Cian Bolger(C)  5 Ramil Sheriff
        Kevin Knight  6 Zaine Francis-Angol
         Jorrin John  7 Jesse Waller-Lassen
         Shane Byrne  8 Jack Munns
              Harper  9 Shaqille Coulthirst
     Jeffery Schlupp 10 Alex Pritchard
      Oliver Norburn 11 Lee Angol

                     12 William Ekong
      Connor Brennan 13 Jonathon Miles
       Matt Robinson 14 Daniel Day
           (9)55Mins.   (11)55Mins.
                     15 Freddie Champion
     Robert Peritori 16

             John 52 

     Norburn 80(Late) 

        S. Beaglehole   A. Inglethorpe

Ref:- M. Walsh
It was a warm sunny morning in the Midlands with a bit of a breeze blowing to make high balls a little unpredictable. As usual Leicester did not provide a teamsheet so any mistakes in the line-up I apologise for, but it is the clubs fault. The sooner they provide them the better as there was a good crowd of onlookers for this game. The Foxes had an experienced side out with eight players from last seasons trip to Spurs lodge when they went the whole season unbeaten. The Spurs side today included four players who started on the subs bench that day to indicate the difference between the sides.

Spurs lined up with Archer in goal behind Sheriff and Francis-Angol with Tapping at right back and Stewart on the left. Munns and Dombaxe started in the centre of midfield with Waller-Lassen on the right wing and Angol, making his first start, on the left. Pritchard supported Coulthirst up front.

Spurs kicked off the first half attacking the North end but found it hard to make progress as the Leicester players were all bigger than them and used that physical advantage to good effect. It was also noticeable that they were closing down the back line to force Archer to kick long. With their tall back four it enabled them to win possession more easily.

It wasn't until late in the half that Spurs got some of their passing game going to threaten a goal. The home side used the long throw-in as well to utilise their height advantage as early as the first minute. Spurs had the first chance of the game when Coulthirst had an effort saved which was followed a few minutes later with a chance by Harper that Archer saved. A lot of the game was played in the middle of the park as neither side was able to hold onto the ball and defences let little get past.

Dombaxe fired wide as did Norburn soon after but it wasn't until halfway through the half that any keeper had to make a save when Gill stopped an effort from Coulthirst. Trebbutt sent John away down the right and his cross was put wide by Byrne at the far post. Schlupp fired over just before Angol crossed for Pritchard to shoot wide. Bolger crossed the halfway line and had a try from distance that was wide. As Spurs began to link a few passes together Waller-Lassen was able to get into the area and hit a low ball that was turned onto the near post before it was cleared. That was the closest either side had come to scoring. The Foxes had most of the ball during the half and ended it with Archer saving from John.

The home side made one change for the start of the second half as they tried to make more of the possession that they had in the first half. Surprisingly Coulthirst won a header from Dombaxe's free kick but put it over the bar. John was played through and he had time to pick his spot to beat Archer as the keeper came out to narrow the angle.

Inglethorpe took off Angol and replaced him with Day who went to left back with Stewart pushing up on the left flank. Francis-Angol headed wide from a free kick by Pritchard and this was followed by a couple of efforts by Waller-Lassen as Spurs looked to get back. The first came from a good run after holding off the challenge of Taft and the second came from a short corner routine where Munns played a one-two before crossing to the far post.

The ref had spoken to a couple of the Leicester players in the second half including John for being too physical before finally booking Norburn for a late tackle on Munns. Because Spurs were getting some success down the left Inglethorpe took a gamble by sending on young Champion in place of Stewart. With Spurs pushing forward more Schlupp got behind the defence and Archer had to come out quickly. It looked like Jordan got a hand to the ball which took the striker a little wider and allowed Francis-Angol to get back a clear for a corner. Some irate fans felt Archer had handled outside the area, but if he did the ref allowed the advantage. Day got down the left and crossed for Pritchard in the middle of the area. Alex took a touch before hitting the ball on the turn which gave the home defence the chance to block for a corner. Leicester were then able to run the clock down and see out the game to secure the points.

Spurs did well against a very strong Leicester side who were bolstered by a few over-age players and set themselves up well. The inexperience of the Spurs side showed in the way they were not able to adapt their play to counter the tactics of the opposition. They are still learning and as the season progresses will improve. By the time the two sides meet again the Spurs players will have played together long enough to gel better. Despite their physical presence Leicester did not have it all their own way and the fact they could not turn the amount of possession into more goals is a credit to our rookie side.

Next week Spurs entertain Bristol City at the Lodge before visiting high flying Watford the following week.


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