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Posted on 9 October 2006  - 12:00

Progression is always the name of the game in the Academy. Under-18s coach Alex Inglethorpe reports exactly that as he reflects on his first couple of months at the club.

Progression is always the name of the game in the Academy. Under-18s coach Alex Inglethorpe reports exactly that as he reflects on his first couple of months at the club.

Speaking for the first time since joining us from Exeter City, Alex was in a positive frame of mind after his side came from 2-0 down to beat MK Dons 3-2 at the weekend.

That made it just one defeat in the opening seven games in the FA Premier Academy League and with a number of his squad impressing in reserve team football already and Under-16 players successfully making the step into the Under-18s, Alex has plenty to smile about.

“Full credit to the lads who have come into the side because we’ve been unfortunate with injuries to key players – Terry Dixon, Kyle Fraser-Allen, Troy Archibald and Joe Martin have all had long-term problems," Alex reflected.

“On the whole we’re progressing and in terms of development, the players who have made the step into the reserves look like they are capable of holding their own in there, that’s the main thing.

“In terms of progressing as an Academy, if we were to take the development side of it away and just concentrate on results, we’ve only lost one in seven, with four wins and two draws, so that’s a step in the right direction as well.

“The progression into the Academy has also been very good with the likes of Ryan Mason, Jonathan Obika and Andros Townsend all featuring. If the success of what we do is judged on how many players we can get into the reserves and how many Under-16s we can get into the youth team, then we’re certainly on the right track."

Academy report

Our Under-18s are quickly becoming the comeback kings in the FA Premier Academy League - they did it for the fourth time in seven matches on Saturday.

They trailed 2-0 at the interval against MK Dons only for goals in the second half from Dorian Dervite, Tomas Pekhart and Cian Hughton to secure a 3-2 victory.

It was a repeat of the result on the opening day at Crewe - 2-0 down, 3-2 win - while they were 2-0 down against Watford and trailing 2-1 against Reading before securing 2-2 draws.

Under-18 coach Alex Inglethorpe takes up the story. "It's obviously a concern on one hand because it suggests we're not doing something correct in the first half or we're finding it hard to break teams down, but on the other hand you have to give a lot of credit to the players to have the ability to come back in the style they've come back.

"It's not ideal but they are answering a lot of questions in terms of their mental approach.

"Saturday was a little different in that we missed a penalty and had two goals disallowed. MK Dons had two situations from free-kicks with the wind in their favour and scored from both of them and apart from that, they didn't have a shot. Indeed, if we'd won more comfortably, there couldn't have been any complaints.

"Our first goal came from a corner scored by Dorian Dervite, who rose really well to score. The second was from good cross from the right from full-back Takura Mtandari met by Tomas Pekhart and the third was from Cian Hughton and that was testament to the pressure we had, when your full-back pops up to tap in a rebound. It was no less than we deserved."

Spurs U18s: Stroud, Hughton, Mtandari, Lewis, Dervite, Archibald-Henville (Martin, 46; Mason, 85), Davis, Livermore, Pekhart, Hutchings, Hutton (Obika, 75).