Tottenham Hotspur’s Under-19 squad will face Barcelona in their second game of this season’s NextGen Series at White Hart Lane on Thursday.
Last season the Spurs youngsters had a great run in the NextGen Series. They started off with a 2-2 draw in Switzerland against FC Basel. In their second group stage game they thrashed the eventual NextGen champions Inter 7-1. Spurs finished top of their group with 14 points from 6 games.
The lads won their quarter-final clash with Liverpool (1-0), but were disqualified due to an accidental breach of tournament rules, after Spurs had fielded an ineligible player against Liverpool.
Tottenham Hotspur’s Director of Football Administration Darren Eales said: “It is with regret that we have decided to withdraw from the semi finals of the NextGen Tournament due to an accidental breach of a competition regulation. We have done so fully respecting the Tournament regulations.”
This season the U19s kicked off their NextGen campaign with a 2-3 away win at VfL Wolfsburg. Wolfsburg drew first blood, courtesy of a first half penalty, but Spurs came out fighting in the second half and a fine attacking display resulted in goals by Shaquile Coulthirst, Ruben Lameiras and Alex Pritchard to take home all 3 points.
Spurs currently lead Group 1, with Barcelona and Anderlecht joint second after they drew 1-1 at Barça’s Mini Estadi.[table “” not found /]
Barcelona’s La Masia academy is widely regarded as the best football academy in the world. It has produced world class players who form the backbone of the current Barcelona first team. However, Spurs’ Under-19 coach Alex Inglethorpe has reminded his players that they are not playing against Xavi, Iniesta and Messi on Thursday night:
The Spurs youngsters will be spurred on by approximately 600 Spurs supporters of the 1882 movement, an initiative by The Fighting Cock podcast. They will fill blocks 15 and 16 in the lower West stand. Although the tickets allocated to the 1882 project are sold out, there are still tickets available for Thursday’s match through Spurs’ ticket office.
NextGen Series: Tottenham Hotspur v Barcelona will be aired live on Eurosport this Thursday at 19:00 BST / 20:00 CEST.