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Spurs Game 1 2011

Tottenham Hotspur welcomed Football Aid 2011 to London on a glorious sunny day in the capital. The pitch was pristine and the conditions perfect for a game of football. The players would need a carpet like surface as earlier that morning the bar had been set high by Away manager Ossie Ardiles who expected his side to put in a Barcelona like performance – no pressure then. Gary Mabbut gave his side another inspiring team talk before both sides were ready to take in what was set to be a thoroughly enjoyable game of football.

Tuesday 24th May
Tottenham Hotspur Home vs. Tottenham Hotspur Away
Kick Off: 10.30
Match Officials: Carol Mitchell, Chris Evans, Chris Myatt & Paul Shea
Legends: Ossie Ardiles & Gary Mabbut

The Away team in their light blue strip got the game underway shooting from left to right. They nearly scored with their first attack of the game as the left midfielder Hinchcliffe flashed the ball across the face of goal but no one was able to add the vital touch to steer the ball into the net. An early warning for the home side.

In the opening exchanges neither side could impose themselves on the game. The game was largely a midfield battle with chances so far at a premium. The Home side did have a good opportunity after fifteen minutes after good work from Tomlinson who cut inside and blasted an effort from fifteen yards. The midfield man was unlucky to see his shot skip wide of the target.

Midway though the first half the Away side would go even closer still after a great run by Shelley down the right flank, beating his man before whipping in a pin point accurate cross for Bird who steered his first time effort past Grinham only to be denied by the post.

Only a minute later it would be the Home side who would take the lead. The ball was only half cleared and fell to Williams who took the ball on a mazy run beating four men in the middle of the park before clipping the ball through for Barry Greaves who on the volley slotted the ball from twelve yards into Matthew Shelley’s bottom corner. Greaves looked to the linesman in anticipation he would be ruled offside, but the flag stayed down and the goal stood. A great finish from the right back. (1-0)

The Home side wouldn’t have long to wait until they doubled their advantage. Greaves knocked a long ball forward into Day to chase. Day showed a good touch before lofting an inviting ball for Matthew Berncastel to power home from six yards past the stranded keeper whose defence on this occasion had been posted missing. (2-0)

Having built up a comfortable lead the home team were content to stroke the ball around patiently and let the Away side do the leg work. This patient approach was to pay dividends when the home side worked their way in behind the defence and Tomlinson whipped in a cross for Matthew Berncastel to nod into the net. (3-0)

The Home side almost extended their lead even further when Williams showed terrific vision to split the defence with a thirty yard pass onto Tomlinson who found himself through on goal. He took his time, picked his spot and rifled the ball towards the goal only to be stopped point blank by the ‘keeper. A great save.

The Home side would be given a golden chance to put the game out of sight as Day played a long ball over the top for Berncastle to chase but Shelley was off his line quickly to snuff out the danger before Berncastle could get a touch on the ball. Shelley sliced his clearance however and the ball fell to Tomlinson who had an open goal from 20 yards. The number 8 fluffed his lines however as he took a touch, set him self then fired wide of the empty net. He will be absolutely kicking himself as he knows he should have done better.

That was the last action of the half in which the home side dominated. Ardiles would have a tough task to fire his side up for the second half and an even tougher job to overcome the deficit.


Half-Time: Tottenham Hotspur Home 3-0 Tottenham Hotspur Away

 

Shortly after the restart the Away side almost found themselves back in the game. Want, displaying a great never say die attitude won the ball in midfield and played a neat pass to Paul Shelley who played a nicely weighted first time ball into the path of Bird. Bird tried to place his shot across the keeper but Grinham got the vital touch and diverted the ball off its goalbound path.

One their next attack the Home side would effectively end the game as a contest. They won a corner which Day played short to Gareth Zaver who elected to shoot rather than take the easier option than cross. From the by-line Zaver cut inside and created an angle to shoot, albeit an extremely tight one and fired the ball home. A very well taken goal indeed and one that would surely seal the win for the home side. (4-0)

The Away side would keep plugging away and would eventually get their reward for all their hard work. Hinchcliffe had possession in midfield and was not hurried into making a risky pass. He held the ball well and moved the ball to Bird who did well beating a man before sliding the ball through the narrowest of gaps for James Carlisle to coolly slot the ball home from 16 yards. A very composed finished from the substitute. (4-1)

That goal really seemed to inspire the Away side. They began to up the tempo and impose themselves on the game. As the second half wore on the fans really begun to see an improvement in the side in sky blue and the match became a very even contest indeed. End to end football became the order of the day with a decent midfield battle thrown in for good measure.

Despite the much improved second half performance from the Away team, it would be the Home side who would strike again. The goal would go to 2010 Football Aid Goal of the Season winner – John Day.  Ironically Day’s strike was sublime and may well even be a contender for the 2011 prize. Fisher sprayed a 20 yards pass in behind the defence for Day to run onto, keeper Shelley rushed out to close the angle and from outside the left hand corner of the box Day lifted the ball over the keeper from twenty five yards and watched the ball sail into the back of the net. A truly fantastic strike. (5-1)

Not long after the Away side were handed an opportunity to get on the score sheet when Johnson was judged to have handled Shelley’s attempted cross in the box. The referee showed no hesitation in point to the spot. This would certainly raise the debate of television evidence being used in the game as replays show Johnson was clearly outside the box when the incident occurred. Mike Burke stepped up and powered the ball into the centre of the net with the keeper guessing the wrong way. (5-2)

Both teams then set out to add more to their tally in a last flurry of attacking football. The Home side went closest but neither side were able to notch up another. Referee Peter Munt brought proceedings to a close in what was a thoroughly enjoyable encounter at White Hart Lane.

Full-Time: Tottenham Hotspur Home 5-2 Tottenham Hotspur Away

Man of the Match Home: Matthew Berncastle
Man of the Match Away:
Adam Mancey
Moment of the Match:
Matthew Shelley

2010 Goal of the Season Winner: John Day

Home Team: Peter Grinham (c), Barry Greaves, Tom Stoten, Elgan Rees Williams, Kevin Fisher, Robert Farlam, Dean Tomlinson, Matthew Berncastel, Mark Darby, John Day (subs) Kevin Camgoz, Jason Johnson, Gareth Zaver

Manager: Gary Mabutt

Mascot: Lily Rose White

Away Team: Matthew Shelley, Mike Burke, Anthony Drexler, Liam Osbourne, Adam Mancey, Glenn Barnard (c), Nolan Hinchcliffe, Ryan Bird, Paul Shelley, Chris Shelley (subs) Sam Want, Mike Burke, Edward Ryabko, James Carlisle

Manager: Ossie Ardiles

Mascot: Connor Murray