Great Night All Round
Enfield Town 3 Tottenham Hotspur U21 2
Report by Andrew Warshaw
A fantastic crowd of 841 saw us overcome a strong Tottenham Hotspur development squad – supplemented by the surprise appearance of a former Spurs household name – with an excellent display that augers well for the upcoming weeks and months.
You only have to look at last season’s dire pre-season form, followed by a memorable campaign, to know that nothing can be taken for granted one way or the other.
But there was a sense of optimism and positivity as we gave a tremendous account of ourselves despite still being without a string of players who are still unavailable through various commitments.
On a balmy evening, it was fitting that our player of the season Sam Youngs revelled in the occasion, opening the score after just three minutes by sweeping the ball into the bottom corner after excellent build-up play from Adam Cunnington and new signing Marcus Wyllie who might well have had a hattrick on the night.
Adi Connolly kept us in the lead with a superb stop from Max Robson following a left-wing cross from a certain Danny Rose — training again at Spurs after apparently seeking to leave Watford, and allowed to appear as an over-age player.
The sight of Rose lining up against Town certainly added extra interest and only served to galvanise us more even though right on the half-hour Spurs were back in the game, Roshaun Mathurin converting from the spot after being fouled by the returning Scott Shulton.
Halftime brought a wave of substitutions by both sides and just after the restart Wyllie almost put us back in front – not once but twice. First his snap shot was brilliantly saved by Aaron Maguire, then Maguire somehow got a hand to Marcus’ goalbound looping header.
But it wasn’t much longer before we restored our lead. Youngs was fouled on the edge of the box and when his freekick was pushed away, Cunnington supplied the finish (pictured).
It was a far cry from last season’s 4-0 defeat in the corresponding fixture. Although Spurs understandably had plenty of the ball, they didn’t manage to hurt us too often and on the hour we extended our lead.
Wyllie was alleged to have been barged over by Kallum Cesay inside the box and Youngs sent the keeper the wrong way with the penalty.
As we tired, it was inevitable that our fully professional under-21 opponents, a couple of whom had represented the senior Tottenham side, would finish the stronger.
After a number of the more experienced members of Wayne Burnett’s squad came off the bench, a 20-yard thunderbolt from Nile John reduced the arrears and set up a close finale.
But we did superbly to hold out and next up Maidstone on Saturday followed by St Albans City at home on Tuesday.
Town starting line-up: Connolly, Muleba, Bray, Trialist, Marko, Dayton, Shulton, Youngs (c), Kirwan, Cunnington, Wyllie.
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