FA Youth Cup report: WBA 2-1 Spurs
Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) Football Club is located in North London. The club is also known as Spurs. Tottenham's home ground is White Hart Lane. The club motto is Audere est Facere (To dare is to do).
A sucker punch goal less than a minute after equalising saw our Academy U18 side tumble out of the FA Youth Cup at West Brom on Tuesday night.
A near-post header from a corner won this third round tie at a soggy Hawthorns after David Hicks (pictured) curled a corner straight home to make it 1-1 in the 52nd minute.
The lads were left to rue a spell of four missed chances in five minutes as they attempted to drag themselves back into the game - few would argue they deserved a draw on the night.
There were three key moments as we edged the first half.
The first arrived after 31 minutes when a clever flick from Scott Thyer released Jamie O'Hara into the box. He went down under a couple of sliding challenges to what looked like a clear-cut penalty but appeals were waved away.
West Brom, who looked dangerous in possession, were kept at bay until the 37th minute when Nicky Eyre came out quickly and bravely to deny Brian Smikle, clean through from Rob Elvins' pass.
But the home side grabbed the lead three minutes later. There was more than a hint of fortune about it as Smikle cut in from the right into what looked like no-man's land, managed to poke the ball to Elvins whose shot took a wicked deflection to leave Eyre helpless mid-dive.
The deficit was a little harsh on the lads after they always looked more likely to score - the impressive Matt Jones in the home goal blocked well from O'Hara early on and Tyher flashed a shot just wide.
The lads came out with purpose in the second half and levelled the scores within seven minutes. It was simple enough - Hicks curled in a corner that went through a crowd of bodies at the near post and home.
But the celebrations were still in the air when West Brom regained the lead. Rob Davies swung in the corner this time and Elvins was there again to nod home at the near post.
Then came the host of chances. Michael Malcolm flicked Hicks' fine cross wide after 61 minutes, followed by the best of the lot two minutes later. O'Hara spread the play to Hicks, he left two defenders on the floor by cutting onto his right foot before laying the ball back to Stuart Lewis who shot wide from 12 yards.
Malcolm, always lively, burst into the box after 65 minutes but shot into the side netting and seconds later, Andy Barcham's fine cross fell to O'Hara but the midfielder didn't get hold of his shot.
The lads continued to probe but chances were few and far between in the closing stages. Indeed, Eyre produced the save of the game in injury time to deny Elvins' hat-trick.
MINUTE BY MINUTE
4mins: Lewis pass released O'Hara, held off Holmes, low shot from angle blocked by Jones.
8mins: Davies firm volley from Hodgkiss cross always going over.
14mins: Thyer spun away from marker on half-way, travelled 20 yards, shot skidded a yard wide.
16mins: Barcham cut in from right, dragged shot wide.
22mins: More good work from Thyer, run into heart of home defence, lay-off to O'Hara who skied attempted curler.
30mins: O'Hara clean strike from 30-yard free-kick, safe hands from Jones.
31mins: PENALTY? Looked nailed on as O'Hara crumbled under challenge from Thyer's clever flick but appeals waved away.
37mins: SAVE. Eyre out quickly to block as Smikle burst onto Elvins' flick.
38mins: Elvins half-volleyed Smickle cross straight at Eyre.
41mins: GOAL. Smikle break, cut inside, moved going nowhere but snapshot from Patterson took huge deflection and left Eyre stranded. 0-1.
Half-time: WBA 1-0 Spurs
47mins: Decent move ended with Malcolm lay-off to O'Hara, low shot comfortable for Jones.
50mins: SUB. Barnett for Brown.
52mins: GOAL. Hicks inswinging corner through the bodies at the near post and straight in. 1-1.
53mins: GOAL. WBA straight back, near-post corner from Davies headed home by Elvins. 1-2.
60mins: Hicks cut in from left, shot straight at Jones.
61mins: CHANCE. Superb cross by Hicks flicked wide by Malcolm.
63mins: CHANCE. O'Hara spread play brilliantly to Hicks, he turned away from two defenders, laid ball back to Lewis who shot wide from 12 yards.
65mins: CHANCE. Malcolm burst into box, left side, shot wide.
66mins: CHANCE. Fine cross from Barcham but O'Hara didn't get hold of volley from eight yards.
70mins: SUB. Stevens for Hicks.
89mins: SAVE. Eyre tipped over Elvins' diving header.
Line-ups: WBA: Jones, Hodgkiss, Holmes, Coley, Brown (Barnett, 50), Clarke, Smikle, Tomlinson, Elvins, Patterson, Davies. Subs: Day, Givans, Anderson, Coton. Booked: Clarke.
Spurs: Eyre, McKenna, Francis, Hicks (Stevens, 70), Hodges, Dobson, Barcham, Thyer, Malcolm, O'Hara, Lewis. Subs: Lee, Daniels, Wright, Forecast.