Sterling features for under-23s in draw at Fleet

PUBLISHED: 11:00 15 July 2019

Tottenham Hotspur's Kazaiah Sterling (pic: Dominic Lipinski/PA Images).

Tottenham Hotspur's Kazaiah Sterling (pic: Dominic Lipinski/PA Images).

PA Archive/PA Images

Pre-season friendly: Ebbsfleet United 2 Tottenham Hotspur under-23s 2

Spurs under-23s started their pre-season campaign with a 2-2 draw away to Ebbsfleet United on Saturday.

Wayne Burnett's team trailed twice in Kent, but fought back on both occasions to walk away with an encouraging result.

There were a number of notable absentees from the Tottenham Hotspur development side with the likes of Jack Roles, Harvey White and Troy Parrott not present.

On the bench for the under-23s was Kazaiah Sterling though, who spent the second half of last season on loan at Sunderland.

He could only watch on as Ayo Obileye opened the scoring for Fleet with quarter of an hour played, nodding home from a cross into the area.

It remained 1-0 at the break and Sterling was one of four players summoned by boss Burnett and Spurs levelled in the 47th minute.

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The equaliser arrived in bizarre circumstances with home defender Jamie Grimes hitting the ball into his own net from outside the area.

Ebbsfleet quickly got back in front, however, when Aswad Thomas riffled into the top corner and beyond trialist goalkeeper Ed Smith, previously of Southend United.

Tottenham were not deterred by this and were all square with seven minutes left when Elliot Thorpe slotted home from close range.

A day earlier Burnett's team discovered which group they would be in for this season's Checkatrade Trophy.

Spurs - one of 16 invited under-21 teams from Premier League and Championship clubs - were placed in Group A.

Tottenham will take on Gillingham, Colchester United and Ipswich Town with dates for the fixtures to be confirmed in due course.

Last season, Burnett's team progressed as runners up from Group A, finishing on four points behind eventually winners Portsmouth.

Oxford United dumped them out of the competition in the next phase though, winning 3-0 in the round of 16 stage.

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