Tottenham U21 3-3 Villa U21: Bowery impresses in thriller
New signing Jordan Bowery made an impressive contribution as Villa U21s were involved in a six-goal thriller at Tottenham.
In a cracking precursor to Sunday's top-flight clash between the two clubs, the boys in claret and blue came from behind twice to lead at White Hart Lane.
Bowery set up Graham Burke for the first goal before getting on the scoresheet himself for the first time since joining from Chesterfield.
There was a bizarre goal from Samir Carruthers in the second-half but Tottenham forward Jonathan Obika denied Villa all three points late on with his second of the night.
Nevertheless, Villa remain unbeaten in the Barclays U21 Premier League after another high-scoring encounter.
Gordon Cowans was able to field a strong starting XI as Villa looked to build on their steady start to the league campaign.
Recent signings Bowery and Ashley Westwood were once again given opportunities to impress, while Chris Herd and Nathan Baker also lined up for the visitors.
But it was Tottenham who made the better start and they took the lead after just four minutes.
Obika made a clever run to breach the backline and produced a deft chip over Benjamin Siegrist to make it 1-0.
But Villa responded quickly with Bowery forcing a fine save from goalkeeper Jonathan Miles after a strong run from the inside left channel.
A motoring run from the left by skipper Daniel Johnson also led to a Villa opening but his low centre was just too far behind the incoming Burke.
Siegrist made two excellent saves - firstly getting down low to his right to keep out Adam Smith's drive across goal, before denying Alex Pritchard who cut in from the left to unleash a dangerous curling effort.
On 36 minutes, Villa bagged a superb equaliser with deadline day recruit Bowery instrumental in the build-up.
He controlled with his back to goal and produced a neat lay-off to Burke who powered a left-foot drive into the bottom corner from 18 yards.
It gave Villa fresh impetus. Moments later, Carruthers made a piercing run through the middle of the Spurs defence but his left-foot effort clipped the top of the bar.
Villa began the second-half well with Daniel Johnson calling Miles into action with a well-struck fee-kick.
But again Cowans' team had to come from behind after Kevin Stewart stretched to convert Dean Parrett's curling right-wing cross on 52 minutes
Within five minutes, though, Bowery netted a deserved equaliser.
This time, Burke returned the favour for his strike partner.
The Irishman made a clever run down the right before moving in-field and delivering a low centre for Bowery to sweep into the net.
Villa snatched the lead on 68 minutes through a bizarre Carruthers goal, which caused embarrassment for Spurs custodian Miles.
He spilled the midfielder's high, inswinging free-kick from the left which seemed to be causing little danger.
Villa had their rearguard to thank for preventing a double Spurs chance.
Siegrist stood tall to deny Obika in a one-on-one situation before substitute Josh Barton make a terrific last-ditch challenge to keep out Nabil Bentaleb's rebound.
However, Obika had the final say seven minutes from time, wriggling between two Villa defenders and producing another clever dink over Siegrist.
TOTTENHAM: Miles, Smith, Barthram, Vejkovic, Hall, Stewart, Pritchard, Carroll, Obika, Bentaleb, Parrett. Subs: Priestly, Gallifuoco [for Bentaleb, 80], Dombaxe, Munns [for Carroll, 68].
VILLA: Siegrist, Herd, Devine, Baker, Williams, Carruthers, Westwood, Johnson, Stieber, Burke, Bowery. Subs: Barton [for Williams, HT], Barrett, Cameron [for Baker, 10], Drennan [for Bowery, 78], Grealish.