Date : –  Sunday 1st January 2023 Kick off : –  14.00
Competition : –  Premier League Venue : –  Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Crowd : –  61,651
Referee : –  John Brooks (Leicestershire) Linesmen : – Mr. Constantine Hatzidakis; Mr. Neil Davies
Fourth official : –  Anthony Taylor
VAR official : –  Jarred Gillett VAR Assistant : – Steven Meredith
Weather : –  Chilly wind, mild
Aston Villa kicked off the first half attacking the Park Lane end
Playing time : –   90 + 11 minutes


    None   Buendia  49m 20s
       Luiz  72m 56s
  Romero  (foul on Watkins)  28   Mings  (foul on Kane)  56
  Lenglet  (foul on Bailey)  31   Konsa (time-wasting)  66
  Davies  (foul on Young)  37   Chambers (foul on Son)  90+3
  Bissouma  (foul on Kamara)  59    


1.   Hugo LLORIS (c) 25.   Robin OLSEN
17.   Cristian ROMERO  18.   Ashley YOUNG
34.   Clement LENGLET  4.   Ezri KONSA     (  2.   Danny INGS  82)
33.   Ben DAVIES  5.   Tyrone MINGS   
27.   Lucas DIGNE 
2.   Matt DOHERTY (  12.   Emerson ROYAL  80)      
5.   Pierre-Emile HOJBJERG (  4.   Oliver SKIPP 88)   7.   John McGINN    (  23.   Philippe COUTINHO  78) 
38.   Yves BISSOUMA  (  29.   Pape Matar SARR  80)   44.   Boubacar KAMARA
14.   Ivan PERISIC (  24.   Djed SPENCE  88)   6.   Douglas LUIZ    (  2.   Jan BENDAREK  82) 
10.   Emiliano BUENDIA    (  16.   Calum CHAMBERS  82  ) 
11.   BRYAN Gil (  19.   Ryan SESSEGNON 63)       
10.   Harry KANE 31.   Leon BAILEY  (  2.   Matt CASH  66) 
7.   Heung-Min SON 11.   Ollie WATKINS 
Substitutes Substitutes
20.   Fraser FORSTER 1.   Emiliano MARTINEZ
25.   Japhet TANGANGA 8.   Morgan SANSON
15.   Eric DIER 17.   Ludwig AUGUSTINSSON
6.   Davinson SANCHEZ 35.   Cameron ARCHER

    = Assist        =  Goal scored       =  Own goal scored

Manager : – Antonio Conte Manager : –  Unai Emery
Kit Supplier : – Nike Kit Supplier : – Castore
Shirt Sponsor : – AIA Shirt Sponsor : – Cazoo
Shirt Sleeve Sponsor : – cinch Shirt Sleeve Sponsor : – Kaiyun
Colours : – 
Colours : –
Images of kits courtesy of the marvellous Colours of Football website


Tottenham lost 0-2 at home to Aston Villa today in a game that showed Spurs as a side bereft of ideas and threat to what was a poor side from the Midlands, who were made to look a very good team.

I had been going to write a match report for the website for a while and it wasn’t quite a New Year resolution, but I thought it would be a good time to do it.  As it turned out, I picked a match that there is not much to write home about.  If anything the most there is to write about is what didn’t happen.

Missing Kulusevski and Bentancur really shows what makes Tottenham tick.  A lack of drive from midfield and any sort of attacking flair were the key factors in the performance today and that allowed Villa to take the points without having a great number of chances themselves.  The much talked about pressing that had been put into practice on the training ground didn’t show today, with Bentancur usually being the first to press as high as possible, but when anyone did it today, they were on their own, leaving the opposition an easy task to play the ball out around them.

Our passing was so poor today.  Playing balls to where they thought a player would be wasn’t working and simple passes to team-mates ether didn’t make it or went astray.  Our crossing was shocking and the balls from open play or corners were all easily dealt with.  Very rarely did we threaten a defence of Mings and Konsa, who we have ripped apart in the past.  Too many players were either out of touch or out of form, with Bissouma giving the ball away too often, although he didn’t have many options to pass it to and Son and Kane looked anything but the deadly duo they have been in previous seasons.  When players did find a bit of space, the ball failed to get to them, with play going back on itself, with no forward momentum.  And Hugo had a mare for the first goal, which gave Villa the lead and despite all our heroic comebacks in recent games, you never really felt that would happen today.

With Aston Villa playing the victim early in the match, Bailey was going down easy, while Young was whingeing in the referee’s ear from the opening exchanges.  The referee set the tone for what was a shockingly inconsistent performance by allowing Kamara and Bailey to escape more punishment than a free-kick for taking down Son from each side.  Compared to some of the bookings he handed out to Tottenham players, this was eminently worse.  Of the bookings the Spurs players received, Lenglet’s, given for pulling down Bailey off the ball, was not replicated when Villa players made similar attacks on our players on three occasions.  I don’t mind if referees are bad, as long as they are equally bad for both sides.  The only point where he could be given credit was for showing the yellow card to Konsa, who, like many Villa players before him, took an age to take a free-kick/goal-kick/throw-in.  That was in the 66th minute, but having done so, the ref failed to hurry anyone else up after that.

A break by Watkins produced the first shot of the match, but he slid it wide of the goal before Spurs made a good move down the right, with Doherty bursting into the box to nut-meg Mings before Kamara blocked him for a corner. It was Doherty again a few minutes later, getting onto the end of a diagonal from Ben Davies until McGinn crashed into him as he jumped for it.  Similar to the penalty that Harry Kane missed, McGinn wasn’t looking at the ball and it was a foul as he didn’t get the ball, even if it wasn’t a penalty, it should have been a free-kick.  But for the ref and VAR to ignore it was a shocker.

The best bit of play in the first half came with five minutes remaining before half-time.  Lenglet dropped a pass over the Villa defence for Perisic to run onto into the area.  The Villa keeper came to face him and made him go wide to the right, but he lifted a cross to the far post, where Harry Kane headed the ball on target although it was cleared off the line by Young.  Tottenham’s second effort on goal came shortly after with Son firing a free-kick over the wall, but Olsen had no trouble in claiming it safely at head height in the middle of the goal.

It had been a disjointed first half, with neither side looking that threatening, while Villa’s tactic of getting people (normally three players) around the man on the ball ended up with it being turned over and with a number of stoppages, there was no flow to the play.

Unfortunately, five minutes into the second half, things turned against Spurs with the opener for Villa.  It all started with Spurs trying to press halfway inside the Villa half, but they moved the ball from right to left and nobody closed down Luiz, who was 30 yards out and produced a shot that bounced in front of Lloris, then bounced off his chest back out in front of goal.  Watkins got to it first, moving out to the left and dug the ball back into the middle where Buendia ran onto it and fired the ball into the net from 12 yards out.  It was one of those shots that are difficult for goalkeepers, but one as experienced as Hugo should have dealt with it better; if he couldn’t hold it, the ball should have been beaten out wide of the goal – away form the danger area.

It had been Villa’s first shot on target and soon after the goal, Mings accompanied the three Spurs players in the book after going through Kane from behind.  From the free-kick Perisic took a pass over the back-line by Bissouma but couldn’t keep his shot down.  The former Brighton midfielder was booked soon after, totting up five yellow cards that meant he will miss the Palace game on Wednesday through suspension.  A Villa corner was cleared and ended with a Spurs corner, but nothing came from it and when Villa attacked, only a fine sliding block prevented Watkins threatening number two for the visitors.

When Tottenham quickened the play they looked more dangerous.  Davies found Hojbjerg, who sent Son into space and he played the ball across to Kane at the far post, but reaching for the shot, he could only hook it wide.  It preceded Villa’s second when Kane had the ball taken off him inside the Spurs half and Luiz exchanged passes with McGinn, who slid it back into his run into the penalty area and the ball was flicked over Lloris as he came out, with the outside of the right foot.  Slicing through the Tottenham defence, it was in stark contrast to what our forwards had come up with, as they couldn’t muster a shot on target in the second half.

Luiz tested Hugo again with a shot from the edge of the box, but the Spurs skipper got behind this one and gathered it in.  Mings headed a late corner over the bar and that was about it.

The minor plusses for Spurs was the danger posed by Doherty, Pape Matar Sarr’s neat cameo as a late substitute and Romero’s return, as he added a steeliness to the defence, but too many players around them were not on it at all today.  It looked more than disappointing and the BBC’s claim that they had an “explosive” interview with Conte after the game was nothing more than him being honest about the day, with the request for more players thrown in.  Tell me how many managers don’t want more players at their disposal ?  It had been widely reported that Spurs were looking to bring in players during the January window, so it was hardly revelatory and Antonio’s explanation about the club bringing in younger players is the model that the club have been operating for a number of years.  It was no doubt that this was spelled out to him when he took the job and it is not sustainable for Spurs to spend the multi-millions that United or City do, without the backing of a wealthy benefactor.  But then, you have to be careful what you wish for.

We’ll have to hope that this was just an off day and that the return of players from injury and loss of form can get us the results we managed in the first half of the season.

Paxton Pete


  • There was a minute’s applause for Maurice Norman, the Spurs centre-half in the Double season and Pele who both died recently.
  • It was the seventh consecutive match in which Spurs had conceded at least two goals since November 1988.


Fulham 2 South Coast Big Club 1
West Ham United London 0 Brentford 2
Mancashter City 1 Everton 1
Brighton & Hove Albion 2 Woolwich Wanderers 4
Nottingham Forest 1 Chelsea 1
Liverpool 2 Leicester City 1
AFC Bournemouth 0 Crystal Palace 2
Wolverhampton Wanderers 0 Mancashter United 1
Newcash United 0 Leeds United 0

Premier League Table 2022-23

Played Won Drawn Lost For Against Points Goal difference
1 Woolwich Wanderers 16 14 1 1 40 14 43 +26
2 Mancashter City 16 11 3 2 44 16 36 28
3 Newcash United 17 9 7 1 32 11 34 +21
4 Mancashter United 16 10 2 4 24 20 32 +4
5 Tottenham Hotspur 17 9 3 5 33 25 30 +8
6 Liverpool 16 8 4 4 33 19 28 +14
7 Fulham 17 7 4 6 29 27
25 +2
8 Chelsea 16 7 4 5 20 18 25 +2
9 Brighton & Hove Albion 16 7 3 6 28 24 24 +4
10 Brentford 17 5 8 4 27 27 23 0
11 Crystal Palace 16 6 4 6 17 21 22 -4
12 Aston Villa 17 6 3 8 19 25 21 -6
13 Leicester City 17 5 2 10 26 30 17 -4
14 Leeds United 16 4 4 8 23 29 16 -6
15 AFC Bournemouth 17 4 4 9 18 36 16 -18
16 Everton 17 3 6 8 13 20 15 -7
17 West Ham United London 17 4 2 11 13 22 14 -9
18 Nottingham Forest 17 3 5
9 12 34 14 -22
19 Wolverhampton Wanderers 17 3 4 10 10 26 13 -16
20 South Coast Big Club 17 3 3 11 15 32 12 -17