Spurs as a club may not have been in action over the weekend but there were plenty of Tottenham players on show for various clubs.

At West Brom, Jamie O’Hara scored a stunning goal for Wolves to earn a 1-1 draw, while David Bentley was a second half substitute in Birmingham’s 3-0 FA Cup win over Sheffield Wednesday.

Most notably, over at Brisbane Road, youngsters Harry Kane, Paul Jose Mpoku and Tom Carroll lined up on the bench for Orient’s historic 1-1 draw with Arsenal. Kane and Carroll were introduced in the second half.

In a game you may have missed, Mirko Ranieri made his debut for Basingstoke Town and gave away a penalty in a 3-1 defeat by Ebbsfleet.

Occasionally, much is made about the fact that Spurs no longer have a reserve side and other than the odd game at Spurs Lodge, players such as those listed above have to go to other clubs to gain match practice.

We also have Andros Townsend at Watford and Robbie Keane at West Ham, to name but two. But should we bring the reserves back? Surely for the Orient trio, they would have gained immensely from yesterday’s experience, but what of the others – in a season when we have twice been forced to name two goalkeepers on our substitute’s bench, should they be back at the Lane fighting for their place?



  1. one word……. NO. These players benefit much more playing proper football. The reserve standard is poor and we have more than enough players still at the club to cover. Leave well alone !!

  2. There’s no substitute for 1st team football so in the long run we will benefit more. The fact we had 2 keepers on the bench is a different issue. Maybe loaning out one or two less or having one or two less injuries would sort that rather than a structural overhaul.

  3. We haven’t been “forced” to include 2 goalkeepers on the bench. Harry chose to on both occasions when there were alternatives available – Dean Parrett for example. On the second occasion a development squad friendly had been played the previous day where the majority of players were not loanees, though some were. Tottenham was among the prime movers in getting seven substitutes allowed, and a major part of the argument was the facility to allow young players the experience of being part of the first team squad, while not necessarily being called upon to play. What Harry was playing at in effectively ridiculing this opportunity is anyone’s guess, but it was surely not down to available personnel.
    In my view, the lack of a reserve team has generally been a big advantage both for the Club and the players loaned – you haven’t mentioned Kyle Walker for example, or Naughton, Bostock, Mason, Button, Obika, Rose (recalled today), Caulker, or Jansson (and I may have missed a few!), all of whom have gained valuable, generally regular, first team competitive experience rather than going through the motions in meaningless reserve games, while at the same time spending a day or two each week back at the Club to review their progress, and perhaps play in specially arranged games as has often been the case.

  4. also, The two players you said were introduced for the o’s weren’t, they stayed on the bench for 90 mins (could be wrong about Carroll actually) but certainly Kane didn’t get on… I was hoping to get a look at him and see what he’s about. M’Poku came on though, didn’t do to much…

  5. It is unanimous then. Basically despite being at a lower level, these games really do matter. If the team does badly, they could get relegated or be forced to sell players or the manager gets sacked, or the crowd does not turn up. You get none of this with reserve football. A 20 year old with 18 championship games is more experienced than a 20 year old with 3 seasons of reserve football. I think the defenders need it more – you just do not see many top young centre halves – they need experience of real games. Caulker is getting good experience for a struggling side, and I feel it will accelerate his development. Kyle Walker is basically ready now to step up.

  6. are they going to learn more playing in competitive games for league sides or playing in front of 200 people at stevenage against a load of kids or players coming back from injury…?

  7. It’s better for the kids to go out on loan. Harry doesn’t rotate squad players let alone trust youth. So it’s better that they are getting games as opposed to not even getting on the bench behind the no.3 keeper!


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.