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2 February 2017

First half double sees off City youngsters

NORWICH City's Under-18s went out of the FA Youth Cup at the fifth round stage after a 2-0 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur at Stevenage's Lamex Stadium on Thursday night.

Kazaiah Sterling's first half brace proved enough to decide the game, bringing an end to the young Canaries' run in this season's competition.

City began the game brightest but Spurs soon asserted themselves, with Fergal Hale-Brown reacting sharply to keep out a fierce drive from Samuel Shashoua after the winger found space on the right.

Denied on that occasion, the home side went in front on 17 minutes when Sterling broke free of the last defender before firing under City's goalkeeper.

Dylan Duncan threatened to extend the advantage after spinning neatly in the box only to find Hale-Brown in the way, Norwich's number one able to eventually smother a low effort on goal.

Having been denied himself, Duncan soon played a telling role in the hosts doubling their advantage on the half-hour; sliding a pass through for Sterling to place into net for his second of the evening.

Sterling had the chance to complete his treble minutes later, only for a fine tackle from Toby Syme to prevent him from doing so as the striker prepared to pull the trigger.

As the interval neared Hale-Brown was again called into action, this time diving to his right to palm away a stinging strike from Shashoua.

Following the resumption of play a Keanan Bennetts' free-kick from the right bounced beyond everyone before drifting narrowly wide of the post, ahead of Hale-Brown keeping out a close-range effort.

City looked to reduce the deficit, but two free-kicks in quick succession from Glenn Middleton and Louis McIntosh didn't bring the desired outcome for David Wright's side.

It would be from a set-piece that the visitors next threatened on 75 minutes, with Middleton shooting over after taking down a delivery played to the edge of the box.

Substitute Alan Fleming tested goalkeeper Alfie Whiteman, with the Canaries unable to find the goal needed to bring them back into the contest despite some late pressure as Tottenham eventually closed out a 2-0 victory.

FULL-TIME: Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 Norwich City

GOALS: Spurs:
 Kazaiah Sterling (17, 30).

Hale-Brown; Aarons, Wallis (c), Odusina, Syme; Sambu (Fleming, 75), McIntosh; Spyrou, Hlynsson (Kamal, 62) Middleton; Ashley-Seal. Subs not used: Dickenson (GK), Payne, Ellesley. 

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