Tottenham U18’s vs Manchester City U18’s – Saturday 28th September 2013

To complement the poor result away at Aston Villa, I am unhappy to report that the U18’s got comprehensively beaten at Hotspur Way on Saturday. The 4-1 loss extended the teams losing streak to three games on the trot. Here are a few talking points…

It All Started So Well

City took the lead in the second minute through a Charlie Oliver back post header from a Jack Byrne cross. For a few minutes Tottenham were pinned back, feeling the pressure, but two clumsy, avoidable penalties later and the home side were in the lead and comfortably in control.

The Spurs midfield was strong, fast and skilful. They were complemented by a centre back pairing who were willing and able to charge forward. Between a rock and a hard place, the City midfield was often overwhelmed and much of the forward progress they made was snuffed out in short order. This midfield dominance ensured that Tottenham never really looked in danger of losing their lead once it was established.

Wing Play

It was encouraging to see City shifting their attacking focus towards the wings once it became clear that the middle of the pitch was not a happy place for them. Both wingers were fast and tricky and had the beating of the Spurs full backs whenever they ran at them. City’s only chances of note came from the sides, particularly the right. Unfortunately, this approach did not lead to any goals due to the aforementioned Spurs midfield who consistently tracked back and squeezed our strikers off the ball before they could finish.

A good example of more clinical wing play leading to goals was provided by the home side. Their third and fourth goals were both fine examples of getting to the byline and cutting the ball back to be slotted in past the helpless Angus Gunn in goal. It really was lovely football to watch, even if it would have been preferable to see at the other end. In the end, City were a bit lucky not to lose by a greater margin as Spurs also hit the woodwork twice and missed a few sitters across the six yard box.

Jack Byrne

My ‘one to watch’ from this match. City’s main man in the middle of the park only played for a half, presumably with Wednesday’s game against Bayern Munich in mind, but demonstrated a range of passing and tackling which was unmatched by any of our other players. It wasn’t just that he chased Spurs’ players down to win the ball back, but he looked mean doing it. He got well and truly stuck into the opposition midfielders who were otherwise having quite a bit of fun pushing our lads around at will.

Written by Alex Timperley. Follow him on Twitter.

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3 comments on “Tottenham U18’s vs Manchester City U18’s – Saturday 28th September 2013
  1. Cyril, Mark – Thank you for the kind words, very flattering! You’re lot beat our lot fair and square.

    Mark – I’m sure Rob will correct me if this is wrong, but they’ve just scattered to the winds. I can’t think of a worse time to have been a City youth player than 3 – 5 years ago. You would suddenly have had zero chance of breaking through in the face of our newfound money. Whilst we now have a solid emphasis on youth, that simply wasn’t the case at the time as we needed to establish ourselves first. I’m going to keep getting along to see this current crop as there are some very special players. Keep an eye on Marcos Lopes and George Evans especially over the coming years…

  2. Lovely to see someone acknowledge a great performance from Tottenham. They currently have some very gifted young players and they are benefiting from the amazing facilities. Let’s hope that they develop and have a career in the game. Alex, I’m a Tottenham fan, but am interested to hear about City’s current youth team and what happened to the players in the fantastic side City had 3 or 4 years ago?

  3. As a Spurs fan I have had the pleasure of watching our young lads perform to a high standard for the last couple of years. It is nice to see a blogger for a rival team actually be imparcial and give credit where it is due. Congrats on a very well written and honest report. You do your club proud.

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