Date : –  Wednesday 1st March 2023 Kick off : –  19.55
Competition : – FA Cup Fifth Round Venue : –  Bramall Lane
Crowd : –  28,308
Referee : –  John Brooks (Leicestershire) Linesmen : – Mr. Neil Davies; Mr. Matthew Wilkes
Fourth official : –  Jarred Gillett
Weather : –  Swirling rain, chilly
Sheffield United kicked off the first half attacking the Bramall Lane end
Playing time : –   90 + 7 minutes


    Ndiaye  78m 55s   None
  Baldock (foul on Son)  47   Sarr  (foul on Doyle)  56
  Lowe  (foul on Kulusevski)  85


18.   Wes FODERINGHAM 20.   Fraser FORSTER
6.   Chris BASHAM 6.   Davinson SANCHEZ
15.   Alen AHMEDHODZIC 15.   Eric DIER
19.   Jack ROBINSON 33.   Ben DAVIES
2.   George BALDOCK    (  13.   Max LOWE  62  )   23.   Pedro PORRO  (  16.   Arnaut DANJUMA  82)  
17.   Ismaila COULIBALY  (  8.   Sander BERGE  62)  29.   Pape Matar SARR    (  4.   Oliver SKIPP  74) 
22.   Tommy DOYLE 5.   Pierre-Emile HOJBJERG
35.   Andre BROOKS  (  29.   Iliman NDIAYE  73  ) 14.   Ivan PERISIC
23.   Simon OSBORN     
27.   Lucas MOURA    (  21.   Dejan KULUSEVSKI  73) 
28.   James McATEE  (  4.   John FLECK  85)  9.   RICHARLISON   (  10.   Harry KANE  65) 
   7.   Heung-Min SON
10.   Billy SHARP     
Substitutes Substitutes
1.   Adam DAVIES 40.   Brandon AUSTIN
39.   Sai SACHDEV 25.   Japhet TANGANGA
16.   Oliver NORWOOD 34.   Clement LENGLET
36.   Daniel JEBBISON 17.   Cristian ROMERO
9.   Oliver McBURNIE 45.   Alfie DEVINE

    = Assist        =  Goal scored       =  Own goal scored

Manager : –  Paul Heckingbottom Manager : –  Antonio Conte
Kit Supplier : – errea Kit Supplier : – Nike
Shirt Sponsor : – Randox Shirt Sponsor : – AIA
Shirt Tail Sponsor : –  Ultimate Champions
Sleeve Sponsor : – CT1 Shirt Sleeve Sponsor : – cinch
Colours : – 
Colours : –
Images of kits courtesy of the marvellous Colours of Football website


With a good chance of going further in the FA Cup, Spurs contrived to lose this Fifth Round tie at Sheffield United’s Bramall Lane with a performance that screamed that they thought they only had to turn up to win.  The 0-1 defeat was a result of a lot of Tottenham players seemingly not willing to put in the effort and with some players being sorely out of touch, it left Sheffield United the opportunity to progress to the quarter-finals at our expense.

Sheffield United attacked from the kick off and tested the Spurs defence with an early long throw, but it was headed away, while a corner was won by Ahmedhodzic, but it went over the top of Fraser Forster’s goal. Spurs had the opening chance of the match when Brooks gifted the ball to Lucas Moura, who ran at the home defence and was tackled when he was in the box, with Richarlison and Son perhaps better placed to his left.  He retrieved the ball from the block and found Richi, but his effort was blocked too. It prompted a spell of a few minutes of possession for Tottenham, but they couldn’t get through the red and white shirts back behind the ball.

A Spurs corner came to nothing and when the ball was played back to Son on the right, he came inside to curl a weak shot that Foderingham easily got behind. That was in the 16th minute and four minutes later, Pape Matar Sarr’s effort from outside the box brought the same result. Tottenham’s passing was a bit loose and allowed United to break up play, but Dier stepped up to intercept a Blades pass and went forward, leaving a low ball in from the left for Son, but it was cut out before it reached him.

All you could hear at the ground was Spurs fans singing, as the home crowd were silenced halfway through the first half. Richarlison had a great chance from a straight pass down the right hand channel by Sanchez, but his first time effort flew a foot over the top without forcing the keeper to save.  Moura was looking a bit rusty and when he tried to find the goal with a volley from a headed clearance and only found the upper part of the home fans section behind it.

Baldock had been a bit over-aggressive with Perisic and a sliding tackle from the Sheffield defender hit Ivan on the shin with his studs as he followed up into him, but with no VAR, the referee didn’t see anything wrong with it.  The referee had been one of the errant ones involved in VAR decisions this season, so his ability has already been questioned. Dier was the instigator of a move when he passed over the defence for Moura on the right and his clipped cross came off the top of the bar at the opposite side of the goal. Sheffield had a better opportunity when Hojbjerg’s header back to Forster was never going to get there and Coulibaly was in on goal but sliced his shot wide when he should have hit the target.

Brooks was again weak when Robinson hauled Moura back by grabbing the neck of his short and nearly tearing it off him. It was a booking all day long, but the referee ignored it but gave soft free-kicks when the home players decided to fall over. What is the point of trying to play if the referee fails to protect the safety of the players ? 

It had been a stodgy first half, with United trying to get behind the ball as often as possible and Spurs needed to keep moving the Sheffield players around. We started the second half sharply, but Porro’s cross was too long for the Spurs players in the box. It took all of a minute for the referee to final pull out his yellow card, as Baldock when through Son from behind in the centre circle. From the free-kick, Spurs won a corner on the left and Perisic won it at the near post to glance it at goal, but Foderingham grabbed it to prevent it going across the line.

Hojbjerg sent Son clear on the right, but it was defended and from the second ball in, it was headed away but straight at Ahmedhodzic, which brought cries for a penalty from the Spurs fans behind that goal. Moura then took the ball past a couple of players in the box, but his cross was half-blocked and spun up for the keeper to claim.  Sonny then struck a shot from just outside the box that flew wide. The Porro-Moura link-up on the right was not working as the passing between the two was not on the same wavelength and Richarlison came out for the second half, not looking to put himself about and there was a lack of urgency about our play.  To sum up Richarlison’s play, he took a pass on the edge of the D and shot, with it ending up near the corner flag off to his
right !

Kane came on for Richi in the 65 th minute to try and get things going up front and it took until the 71st minute before we had another effort on goal. Hojbjerg’s long pass forward found Porro, but his first touch in the box took the ball behind him, but it gave him space to turn on the ball and look to curl it into the top left hand corner, but it was just too high.  A innocuous ball into the Spurs box popped up for substitute Ndiaye who went between Hojbjerg and Porro before he drifted inside Sanchez and found the net just inside Forster’s near post. There were enough defenders to prevent him getting through, but they didn’t and the fresh legs United introduced were enough to give them the lead.

Perisic had a header that went down into the ground and all the power was lost, Kane had a late header from Perisic’s cross that had him having to try and get it on target from slightly behind him and it drifted wide. It was the last chance to get level and stay in the competition that has Burnley, Grimsby Town and Blackburn Rovers in the last eight.

It was a shocking performance against a Championship side who had made eight changes through injury, illness and suspension and our best chance of getting a long way in this competition evaporated like the Sheffield rain.  The home side wanted it more and there should have been enough in the Spurs side to go through, but we have to match the opposition’s desire to have a chance of doing that. The fact that the Sheffield United keeper was hardly tested is an embarrassment and, in the end, it was the right result.

Too many players weren’t committed enough, even if things were not working, that left one opportunity that was taken being enough for the Blades. Having done so well in the last two matches, this one leaves a concern about what the players want. It realistically leaves us without the opportunity of winning a trophy this season.  The league is beyond us because we have lost too many games already and we’re too inconsistent. Having reached the last 32 of the Champions League, we might get a little further if the team can raise their game, but there are some tip clubs still in the competition. That leaves a top four place to fight for and the selection for this team was a little patronising, as surely it is better to get ahead and then sub players off rather than give them 20 minutes or less to try and turn the game back in our favour.

Disappointing, but the game slipped away from us in the second half, getting to a point where there was no way back. It used to be a rainy night at Stoke that tested club’s character, but now it looks like it’s a rainy night in Sheffield … and we failed that test.

Stanford Rivers


  • There was a minute’s applause for John Motson, who died recently.
  • Harry Kane’s 421st appearance for Tottenham put him into the club’s top ten appearance makers.


Fulham 2 Leeds United 0
Stoke City 0 Brighton & Hove Albion 1
Leicester City 1 Blackburn Rovers 2
Bristol City 0 Mancashter City 3
Burnley 1 Fleetwood Town 0
Mancashter United 2 West Ham United London 1
South Coast Big Club 1 Grimsby Town 2