U21s: Manchester United 1-0 Tottenham Hotspur – A dark victory

by jonnyescott

Manchester United’s U21s team battled to a 1-0 victory over league leaders Tottenham Hotspur at the City Of Salford Stadium thanks to a goal from Ryan Tunnicliffe despite a power-cut late in the first half.

Lining up with no first team regulars, United came up against a Tottenham side who were unbeaten in four and had included French international Younes Kaboul along with former United starlet Zeki Fryers in their starting XI.

Both teams started steadily but United’s Frederic Veseli had to be replaced early on after pulling up with what looked like a very painful hamstring injury.

United were immediately put on the back foot after the minor interruption as Tottenham’s exciting young Spaniard Cristian Ceballos tested Ben Amos with just 13 minutes on the clock.

The game then started to open up a little bit and United went close with efforts from the superb Adnan Januzaj and Ryan Tunnicliffe.

Ben Amos was then called into action once again as a low strike from a Kaboul free kick left Amos to hesitantly parry the ball past his left hand post.

imagePlaying their first game at the newly built Salford Stadium, the match went into darkness – literally – as a powercut held up the game.

But the referee decided to play the final five minutes of the first half without the floodlights with both teams agreeing that the visibility was good enough to carry on playing through to half time.

Some half time heroics from the local power man enabled the second half to get underway on time and within minutes of the second half starting, former Portsmouth hard man Younes Kaboul hobbled off, a blessing in disguise it was for United.

The reds then got a stranglehold of the game with the lively Januzaj running things up front along with Tunnicliffe with both players movement causing the Spurs defence problems.

United then broke the deadlock on 56 minutes with Ryan Tunnicliffe poking the ball past the onrushing Spurs keeper Lawrence Vigouroux after good build up play from midfield.

United then began to go for their second of the game and probably should have done so with a characteristic fast counter attack resulting in Jesse Lingard bringing out a superb save from Vigouroux, with the resulting corner leading to a fierce Larnell Cole shot striking the post.

United then looked the more composed as they had for most of the match however Spurs did press for an equaliser but the reds held on to earn a deserved three points which now sees them replace Liverpool in second place with just three games left of the Elite League season.

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