|TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 2 (1)||SOUTH COAST BIG CLUB 3 (1)|
|Date : – 9th February 2022||Kick off : – 19.45|
|Competition : – Premier League||Venue : – Tottenham Hotspur Stadium|
|Crowd : – 54,102|
|Referee : – David Coote (Nottinghamshire)||Linesmen : – Mr. Harry Lennard; Mr. Nick Hopton|
|Fourth official : – Graham Scott|
|VAR official : – John Brooks||VAR Assistant : – Lee Betts|
|Weather : – Raining throughout the game|
|SCBC kicked off the first half attacking the Park Lane end|
|Playing time : – 90 + 9 minutes
|TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR||SOUTH COAST BIG CLUB|
|Bendarek (o.g.) 17m 24s||Broja 22m 33s|
|Son 69m 43s||Elyounoussi 79m 01s|
|Adams 81m 18s|
|Sanchez (foul on Adams) 59||Perraud (foul on Kulusevski) 76|
|Romero (wrestling ball off Forster, who wanted to waste time) 90+3||Romeu (foul on Son) 77|
|Forster (time-wasting) 84|
|TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR||SOUTH COAST BIG CLUB|
|1.||Hugo LLORIS (c)||44.||Fraser FORSTER|
|6.||Davinson SANCHEZ||2.||Kyle WALKER-PETERS|
|4.||Cristian ROMERO||35.||Jan BENDAREK (o.g.)|
|33.||Ben DAVIES||22.||Mohammed SALISU|
|8.|| Harry WINKS
|5.||Pierre-Emile HOJBJERG ( 30. Rodrigo BENTACUR 60)||6.||Oriel ROMEU|
|3.||Sergio REGUILON ( 23. Steven BERGWIJN 83)||8.||James WARD-PROWSE (c)|
|24.||Mohamed ELYOUNOUSSI ( 27. Ibrahima DIALLO 90+7)|
|27.||Lucas MOURA ( 21. Dejan KULUSEVSKI 76)|
|7.||Heung-Min SON||18.||Armando BROJA ( 32. Theo WALCOTT 90)|
|10.||Che ADAMS ( 7. Shane LONG 88)|
|22.||Pierluigi GOLLINI||13.||Willy CABELLERO|
|2.||Matt DOHERTY||5.||Jack STEPHENS|
|14.||Joe RODON||9.||Adam ARMSTRONG|
|19.||Ryan SESSEGNON||19.||Moussa DJENEPO|
|42.||Harvey WHITE||20.||Will SMALLBONE|
|44.||Dane SCARLETT||43.||Yan VALERY|
|Manager : – Antonio Conte||Manager : – Ralph Hasenhuttl|
|Kit Supplier : – Nike||Kit Supplier : – Hummel|
|Shirt Sponsor : – AIA||Shirt Sponsor : – Sportsbet.io
|Shirt Sleeve Sponsor : – cinch||Shirt Sleeve Sponsor : – Virgin Media
|Colours : –
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|Images of kits courtesy of the marvellous Colours of Football website|
|Two late goals turned Tottenham’s lead into a 2-3 defeat as SCBC took the points at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, helped by some weak refereeing and a VAR decision that went the visitors way.
Spurs found it difficult to deal with the SCBC hard press and their intentions were clear from the first minute when Che Adams barged Hugo Lloris in the back as he allowed the ball to run behind for a goal-kick, getting bundled into the advertising hoardings in the process. Was it too early in the game for a booking ? Coote thought so, but a foul is a foul and a booking is a booking whatever time it is in the game, unless it is for time-wasting, when the appropriate time to book a goalkeeper is in the last ten minutes, despite the fact that they had been doing it since the 21st minute.
An Elyounoussi cross from the left found Adams sneaking around the back and Lloris made a superb reaction save to keep his shot out at close range in the third minute, while Spurs worked the ball out from the back (much to the disgust of the woman in front of me, who just wanted the ball played forward quickly) starting with Romero’s pass picking out Lucas Moura in the centre-circle, whose pace took him away from three players, one of whom brought him down. Kane took the ball from the free-kick that was played short to him and hit a low shot from a long, long way out, but it was straight at Forster, who saved easily, despite the ball skidding off the wet turf. That was nine minutes in and four minutes later, Tottenham had the ball in the net. A free-kick 25 yards out on the right was crossed in by Heung-Min Son and Cristian Romero came around the back of the SCBC defence to stoop to head the ball past the keeper from ten yards out, but the referee ruled it out after spotting the linesman had raised his flag for offside. It was an odd decision by the linesman, who had previously been unable to work out which was throw-ins should be given without the referee telling him.
While the Spurs defence was holding out, the break was always on and when Son played the ball to his right to Harry Kane, he saw Sergio Reguilon free on the left in the area. He took the ball under control, but Forster was quick out to him and blocked his shot. It was only a couple of minutes later when the keeper couldn’t keep the ball out, with Lucas turning his man to come inside from the right, but he played a nice ball with the outside of his foot inside the right side of the box to Pierre Hojbjerg, whose low ball towards Son at the near post didn’t reach the striker, as Bendarek tried to intercept, but poked the ball between the post and Forster to give Spurs the lead. It was a slick move and although Tottenham had been up against it, they showed that they could quickly turn defence into attack.
Saints reacted with Broja putting a shot wide off a Spurs player and then Ward-Prowse tried a low drive form outside the box, but Hugo got down to his right to push the ball wide for a corner, which brought another one when Romero headed behind. This time the ball came out to Stuart Armstrong, who tried a first time shot, but it was just too high. The equalising goal came in the 23rd minute and was a comedy of errors. The ball came into the Spurs box and Ben Davies shaped up to clear it in front of the right side of the six yard box until his foot slipped from underneath him. The ball went up in the air, out to the right of the goal and when it was pulled back into the area, Broja was there to open his body up and side-foot it past Hugo from eight yards out. His offensive celebrating of the goal in the South-East corner of the pitch in front of Spurs fans brought only a few words from the referee, but after the recent events elsewhere over the last few weeks, such antagonistic behaviour should be cracked down on. His pointing to his badge was ludicrous anyway, as he is on loan from Chelsea and we all await his goals against SCBC being celebrated in the same manner.
We won a couple of corners, which were cleared and caught by Forster in that order, but Hugo was forced to a diving save to his left to keep out a Stuart Armstrong downward header to a cross from the left wing that he should really have put away. Broja should have added a SCBC second when a short free-kick in their own half was played to Walker-Peters and his long ball saw Sanchez clipped, leaving the striker with a run on goal that he put wide of Hugo’s right hand post from the other side of the goal 12 yards out. Then Armstrong drove narrowly wide, as the sections of the Spurs support started getting restless, with Saints not rolling over as they had hoped for. Another couple of corners to the visitors built pressure before half-time, with the first seeing Lloris coming for the corner, but flapping it against Salisu, with the ball coming off his head, then off Davies for a second corner that was cleared and recycled to Perraud, who fired in a shot from 25 yards out that rattled the crossbar. Luckily for Spurs one last chance before the break fell to Romeu, who hit it over the bar from outside the box, as he appears to be less proficient kicking the ball as he does players.
It had been a torrid first half, with Spurs being unable to relive the pressure on their goal by constantly clearing the ball to a yellow shirt. SCBC had done well, but we had reached half-time at 1-1 and with Hugo being the busier keeper, but with both sides having had a few chances, the score could have been very different.
An early free-kick in the second half saw Regi play it in form the left to the far post, where Sanchez got his head to the ball, but only enough to deflect the ball wide of the back stick. A set-piece for the away team saw Ward-Prowse take the corner that came out to Romeu and once again, he proved my point as his shot went high into the Paxton Road stand. Harry Kane should have restored the Tottenham lead when Reguilon’s cross picked him out at the far post and the ball was headed down, but it bounced up and over the bar from close in.
Sanchez was given a yellow card, rightly, for a high challenge on Adams, but he wasn’t helped by the Hasenhuttl bench’s reaction. It was a little galling as by this time Romeu had made about four bad tackles and Armstrong a couple of cynical ones, without the referee reaching for a card. Hojbjerg was replaced by Bentancur, as the Dane wasn’t having his best game and immediately, Rodrigo started to spray the ball around spreading play and finding his man. It was in the 70th minute that Spurs took the lead, with Royal winning a towering header against Broja, who didn’t jump for the ball, then it was played to Kane, who in turn put the ball in front of Moura on the right wing. He played an early low ball across the face of goal to where Heung-Min Son came in at the far post to guide a cushioned right footed volley past Forster from about eight yards out. It was a well worked goal and taken well by Son, who was robbed of a goal in the first half by the own goal.
The volcano burst on the SCBC bench again, as players surrounded the referee screaming for a foul on Broja, while Hassenhuttl and his side-kicks worked themselves into such a lather that the referee soft soaped it and let them berate him unadmonished. It was enough for Conte to get involved and the Spurs minder Alan Nixon and the coaching staff had to usher him away.
Lucas Moura made way for Dejan Kulusevski to come on and his first involvement was to be kicked by Perraud, who went into the book, swiftly followed (and not before time) by Romeu, who had got to six when the ref warned him about two (which had actually been four) in the first half. However in the 80th minute, Elyounoussi spread the play from left to the right wing, with the ball coming to Ward-Prowse to cross for the Norwegian to end what he had begun by heading the ball across Hugo to level it up at 2-2..
Two minutes later, it was like deja vu, with Ward-Prowse crossing for Adams to be the one to head it in and suddenly Tottenham were behind. It was the defence getting caught being static when the SCBC players were on the move and getting across their markers.
Reguilon went off and Bergwijn came on to add to our attack just before Forster got booked for time-wasting, but why it took so long, only the referee would be able to explain, but won’t because they never do. Into added time Bentancur strode forward to hit a low shot that Romeu blocked, then Harry crossed the ball from the left side for Cristian Romero to had the ball across the goal and Bergwijn was there to net another late goal, only after a VAR review, he was given offside.
The elation at the end of the match by the visiting team was matched by a massive change in manner by their manager towards the officials in comparison to their earlier ranting. For the Spurs fans there was little to cheer, but the realisation that there is much work to be done to a) outwit teams who press hard (and expect Boro to do the same in the FA Cup as they did against Man United) and b) cut out the mistakes which are costing us. SCBC played well above their usual standard, but then Tottenham need to find coping mechanisms to deal with such tactics. Conte complained that the side are too emotional, but while you want to see someone as passionate as him on the touchline, his approach is well described in the same terms.
How there was only six minutes of added time is a mystery. Coote kept saying he was stopping his watch, but there was treatment for Adams, almost five minutes treatment for Broja, two VAR reviews, three goals and six substitutions. And that’s not mentioning Foster’s time-wasting. The referee didn’t really lose control of the game, because he didn’t have it in the first place. The only thing he did right was allow Tottenham’s second goal, although he let himself be the subject of intimidation by Hasenhuttl and his cronies and most of the SCBC team who felt that it had been a foul, when Emerson won the ball fair and square. Booking Romero in added time when he tried to retrieve the ball from Forster’s grasp when Bergwijn had put the ball in was a joke. In trying to prevent play from restarting, Forster was the one who should have been punished with a second yellow. While referees allow goalkeepers to take 8-10 seconds in kicking the ball out and not being ready to restart with goal or free-kicks when there has been a stoppage, the more frustrated players and fans will become. They are there to enforce the laws of the game (Law 12 … “An indirect free kick is awarded if a goalkeeper, inside their penalty area, commits any of the following offences … controls the ball with the hand/arm for more than six seconds before releasing it.”).
With another game on Sunday at home before a series of away matches, Spurs need to pick up points to keep their hopes of a place around the top six alive, let alone any slim chance of being a top four side. Games in hand will be of no use if points are allowed to slip away.
|West Ham United London||1||Watford||0|
|Aston Villa||3||Leeds United||3|
|Norwich City||1||Crystal Palace||1|
|Wolverhampton Wanderers||0||Woolwich Wanderers||1|
Premier League Table 2021-22
|4||West Ham United London||24||12||4||8||42||31||40||+11|
|9||Brighton & Hove Albion||22||6||12||4||23||23||30||0|
|10||South Coast Big Club||23||6||10||7||29||36||28||-7|