Etete and Bowden head Under-23s to victory over Everton
Spurs 2-1 Everton (Premier League 2)
Fri 05 March 2021, 14:57|Tottenham Hotspur
Headed goals from Kion Etete and Jamie Bowden gave our Under-23s a deserved victory over Everton at Hotspur Way on Friday afternoon.
The towering Etete nodded J’Neil Bennett’s cross in off the post as we took the lead inside 16 minutes, only to be pegged back 10 minutes before the break when Everton skipper Nathan Broadhead scored from the spot after Marcel Lavinier was harshly adjudged to have impeded Rhys Hughes in the box.
We created plenty of chances over the course of the game and it was the superb Bowden who rose to divert Etete’s cross into the net and restore our lead on 63 minutes.
Dilan Markanday’s subsequent shot was blocked at the near post by defender Con Ouzounidis and goalkeeper Nico Hansen made a double save to deny the hard-working Etete and Dennis Cirkin as we took the game to the visitors, Josh Oluwayemi largely untroubled at the other end as we made sure of the victory.
With Brooklyn Lyons-Foster suspended, George Marsh did a solid job alongside Tobi Omole in the heart of the back four, while there was a first Premier League 2 start for Rafferty Pedder in central midfield.
The opener arrived just beyond the quarter-of-an-hour mark as Bennett’s in-swinging cross from the left flank on his right foot was headed in via the near post by Etete amid a crowded Everton box. Both Etete and Bennett could have done better following an excellent run along the byline and cut-back by Markanday, while Nile John ran onto Pedder’s low ball across from the left but arrived slightly too late in the area and couldn’t steer his shot on target.
At the other end, Omole had to clear off the line to prevent an own goal following a momentary mix-up between himself and Oluwayemi, before right-back Lavinier was deemed to have fouled Hughes in the box and Broadhead buried the resulting penalty as the Toffees snatched an equaliser on 35 minutes.
We continued on the front foot in spite of the setback and Bowden, commanding and energetic in midfield and often causing problems for the visitors in advanced areas, went close a couple of times before rising unmarked at the back post to nod Etete’s cross from the left past Hansen 18 minutes into the second half.
Markanday’s near-post shot from Cirkin’s cut-back was somehow diverted behind by Ouzounidis five minutes later while Pedder subsequently set up Etete with a through ball, only for Hansen to block the striker’s attempt as well as Cirkin’s drive on the follow-up. Despite our spurned opportunities, we did well to keep Everton largely in their own half in the closing stages, ensuring we ended a run of three consecutive draws to move back up to third in the table.
‘Worthy of our win’
Under-23s Coach Wayne Burnett said: “We were worthy of our win, I thought there were some excellent performances, we had some really good individual displays and we played well as a team. In the last few games we’ve had a lot of draws but we’ve managed to get a deserved win and overall we’re very happy. We’ve had to make some changes but what that does is it gives other people opportunities – Rafferty Pedder has come in today and acquitted himself very well, I think he’ll be pleased with his first start and he certainly made a contribution.”
Spurs 2-1 Everton (Premier League 2)
Spurs: Oluwayemi, Lavinier, Cirkin, Bowden (c) (Thorpe 77), Marsh, Omole, Bennett, Pedder (J Davies 84), Etete, John, Markanday (Whittaker 88). Substitute (not used): Hayton.
Everton: Hansen, John, Small (Hunt 63 (Butterfield 77)), Welch, Ouzounidis, Anderson, Iversen, Price, Broadhead (c), Onyango, Hughes (Cannon 71). Substitute (not used): Barrett.
Goals: Spurs – Etete 16, Bowden 63; Everton – Broadhead 35 (pen).
Yellow cards: Spurs – Cirkin 54, Bennett 79, Etete 87; Everton – John 52.
Referee: Joshua Smith.
Venue: Hotspur Way, Enfield.
Weather: Light cloud, five degrees.