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#U21 #PL2 #MatchReport #Blackburn

White scores, but missed chances cost Under-21s against Blackburn

Spurs 1-3 Blackburn Rovers (Premier League 2)

Sat 17 September 2022, 17:25|Tottenham Hotspur

Harvey White’s late goal proved merely a consolation as our Under-21s suffered a 3-1 defeat at home to Blackburn Rovers on Saturday lunchtime.

With the team trailing 3-0, the midfielder dispatched a superb shot into the top corner in the 89th minute as we deservedly got off the mark at Hotspur Way, but it was too little, too late as the visitors escaped with the points.

The result seemed harsh on Wayne Burnett’s charges as we recovered from the early double blow of conceding inside two minutes and then losing full-back Tyrell Ashcroft to injury by creating numerous opportunities to equalise when the score was 1-0, Jamie Donley, Romaine Mundle and White all going close before the best chance of the lot at the start of the second half when Yago Santiago curled over with the goal at his mercy. Had any of those gone in, you felt we’d have gone on to win, but two goals in five minutes from Blackburn striker Harry Leonard mid-way through the second period gave the visitors enough of a lead to see the game out.

Blackburn arrived with our former Development Squad player Dilan Markanday in their starting line-up but after the injury to Ashcroft, his former team-mate Matthew Craig was shifted out to left-back and did a good job of containing the attacking midfielder for most of the game.

As was the case in our last Premier League 2 outing against Crystal Palace a fortnight ago, we left ourselves with an uphill battle after conceding early. This time, barely two minutes were on the clock when experienced campaigner Sam Szmodics sent Jared Harlock through to slide a low shot past Aaron Maguire, with the same player being denied by the goalkeeper moments later.

Following an eight-minute stoppage owing to the injury to Ashcroft, we began to take control of the play but were left to rue a number of missed chances as Donley and Mundle were denied by goalkeeper Jordan Eastham, while Mundle curled just off-target on a couple of occasions, White also testing Eastham with a low shot just before the break. In amongst all that, Rovers’ Patrick Gamble roamed forward from the back and produced a good stop out of Maguire with a shot from distance while Leonard’s effort was blocked in our box by a combination of White and Marqes Muir before our best chance to equalise went begging on 51 minutes, Santiago breaking free down the right and cutting into the box on his left foot, only to curl over the bar.

Nile John was denied by Eastham after a terrific solo run from deep, but Blackburn made us pay for our inability to put the ball in the back of the net with two quick goals from Leonard, the first on 65 minutes after we’d given away possession cheaply and the second five minutes later when the forward sent the ball looping into the net after Maguire had parried Szmodics’ attempt.

Muir couldn’t quite force the ball over the line following White’s corner as we tried to respond, while Donley was denied by Eastham after beating the off-side trap, with Kallum Cesay ghosting in behind the Blackburn defence to meet a return pass from White, only to steer his shot into the side netting in another good opportunity 13 minutes from time. We did finally find the goal that our efforts deserved when Craig advanced down the left and delivered a cross which White pinged into the top corner from inside the area but ultimately we were out of time and out of luck.

Spurs 1-3 Blackburn Rovers (Premier League 2)

Spurs: Maguire, Cesay, Ashcroft (Robson 12), Muir, Fagan-Walcott, White, Santiago, Craig, Donley (Akhamrich 85), John (c) (Lyons-Foster 73), Mundle. Substitutes (not used): Hayton, Dorrington.

Blackburn Rovers: Eastham, Haddow (Montgomery 83), Gent, Annesley (Saadi 75), Gamble (Pratt 75), Rankin-Costello, Markanday, Wharton, Leonard, Szmodics, Harlock (c) (Wood 75). Substitute (not used): Khan.

Match data

Goals: Spurs – White 89; Blackburn – Harlock 2, Leonard 65, 70.

Yellow cards: Spurs – Fagan-Walcott 52; Blackburn – Harlock 27, Rankin-Costello 71, Markanday 84.

Referee: Aji Ajibola.

Venue: Hotspur Way, Enfield.

Weather: Sunny, moderate breeze, 17 degrees.