|TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 0 (0)||LEICESTER CITY 2 (1)|
|Date : – 20th December 2020||Kick off : – 14.15|
|Competition : – Premier League||Venue : – Tottenham Hotspur Stadium|
|Crowd : – 0,000|
|Referee : – Craig Pawson (Sheffield)||Linesmen : – Mr. Simon Bennett; Mr. Eddie Smart|
|Fourth official : – David Coote|
|VAR official : – Paul Tierney||VAR Assistant : – Harry Lennard|
|Weather : – Bright, mild|
|Leicester City kicked off the first half attacking the Park Lane end|
|Playing time : – 90 + 9 minutes
|TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR||LEICESTER CITY|
|Vardy (p) 45+3m 28s|
|Alderweireld (o.g.) 58m 55s|
|Dier (dissent) 78||Albrighton (foul on Kane) 32|
|Winks (pull on Maddison) 81||Ndidi (persistent fouling) 72|
|TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR||LEICESTER CITY|
|1.||Hugo LLORIS (c)||1.||Kaspar SCHMEICHEL (c)|
|24.||Serge AURIER (8. Harry WINKS 64)||2.||James JUSTIN|
|4.||Toby ALDERWEIRELD [o.g]||3.||Wesley FOFANA|
|15.||Eric DIER||6.||Jonny EVANS|
|3.||Sergio REGUILON||27.||Timothy CASTAGNE ( 18. Daniel AMARTEY 60)|
|17.||Moussa SISSOKO||25.||Wilfred NDIDI|
|5.||Pierre-Emile HOJBJERG||8.||Youri TIELEMENS|
|18.||Giovani LO CELSO (27. Lucas MOURA 49)||11.||Mark ALBRIGHTON|
|28.||Tanguy NDOMBELE (9. Gareth BALE 46)||10.||James MADDISON|
|7.||Heung-Min SON||15.||Harvey BARNES ( 26. Dennis PRAET 84)|
|10.||Harry KANE||9.||Jamie VARDY (p) ( 14. Kelechi ICHEANACHO 88)|
|12.||Joe HART||12.||Danny WARD|
|2.||Matt DOHERTY||28.||Christian FUCHS|
|14.||Joe RODON||33.|| Luke THOMAS
|33.||Ben DAVIES||19.||Cengiz UNDER|
|23.||Steven BERGWIJN||24.||Nampalys MENDY|
|45.||Carlos VINICIUS||17.||Ayoze PEREZ|
|Manager : – Jose Mourinho||Manager : – Brendan Rodgers|
|Kit Supplier : – Nike||Kit Supplier : – adidas|
|Shirt Sponsor : – AIA||Shirt Sponsor : – King Power|
|Colours : –
||Colours : –|
|Images of kits courtesy of the marvellous Colours of Football website|
A particularly disappointing performance by Spurs saw them slip to a 0-2 home defeat by Leicester City when it was hoped that there might be a reaction to Wednesday’s defeat by Liverpool.
The first five minutes of the match were typified by free-kicks given away 25 yards out. Ndombele was taken late by Ndidi and then Kane was dragged down by Castagne after Tanguy had nut-megged Evans, but nothing came from either set-piece, while Hojbjerg’s foul on Maddison gave the Foxes a chance, Fofana headed it over the bar. Unsurprisingly, it was a free-kick that brought the first goalmouth action in the 14th minute, when a long ball from the right found Barnes, whose header back across goal flicked off Aurier’s head. James dragged the ball behind him as it hit the ground and Vardy’s shot flew into Reguilon’s chest and Lloris gathered the loose ball in.
Kane was smothered in the box when the ball broke to him and he nudged it forward to Ndombele in the box, with a back-heel returned to him. Son was free to his left and he tried to slide the ball across goal for Ndombele, but he hadn’t continued his run. There was an offside flag against Sonny anyway. Maddison struck a 22-yard shot over the bar and Leicester were enjoying the bigger share of the ball, mainly because Tottenham were not putting together their passes. The biggest worry that Schmeichel had in the first twenty-five minutes was a sliced clearance that he kicked away as he thought it might have been interpreted as a back-pass.
Spurs put themselves under pressure when Lo Celso twice failed to clear the ball when he had won it and the pressure was only finally relieved when he was fouled by Tielemans. Loose play by Spurs was regularly giving he ball away, when we didn’t have much of it anyway. It took a breakaway from Spurs to take the ball to the other end. Kane was kicked in the stomach by Albrighton as he tried to prevent a counter-attack, but the ref played on. Son took it on and squared for Aurier to his right, but the ball had too much weight on it and the full back could only win a corner with his cross. Pawson did go back to book Albrighton, as it was a naughty foul and could have been dangerous, but when Ndidi produced his third foul of the match, but nothing was done about him. Kane struck it and the ball came off Evans, forcing Schmeichel to make a save with 34 minutes on the clock.
A nice piece of tidying up by Dier played the ball up the right touch-line to Aurier, whose flick sent Lo Celso away. The ball went back to Kane, whose cross to the far post was nodded back and Lo Celso’s shot blocked for a corner. From it, Kane headed Son’s ball in just over the bar. An Aurier cross came off Castagne for a corner and this time Kane’s header was headed away from in front of goal by Vardy.
A couple of minutes before half-time, some fortunate bounces gave Maddison the chance to shoot and it came off Alderweireld’s heel, but unlike Wednesday, it took the sting off it and made Lloris’ save easier. When a ball to the Leicester left side of the box saw Fofana barged over by Aurier. Play continued, but VAR kicked in to give Leicester a penalty just before the half-time whistle. Vardy rammed it down the middle and that was it for the first half. Aurier had been playing very well lately and this was a challenge that he didn’t need to make.
The first half had been pretty poor, with neither side really threatening and a moment of madness had handed the visitors the lead. It would be hard to see how Spurs might get back into the game, as it had only been in the five minutes before the goal that they exerted any pressure on the Leicester goal and that is what they would need to do after the interval.
With Bale replacing Ndombele at half-time, Mourinho was almost forced into another substitution straight away, when Lo Celso went down with a pulled hamstring. A long ball in behind Dier by Justin, played in Maddison into the box and he took a touch before sweeping the shot across Hugo low into the net. VAR looked at it for ages before it was ruled out for offside. It was an escape, but we have been robbed of goals in similar situations, so when the decision came, Lo Celso did have to go off with Moura taking his place.
Leicester looked so much sharper at the start of the half. With their counter-attacking play, it would need Tottenham to be alert, but to get their own game going. Leicester flocking back behind the ball when they lost it was making life hard for Spurs in that respect, but the need to have some movement to pull them about was what was needed.
A long cross from Albrighton on the right caught Alderweireld and Sissoko underneath it and Vardy’s header came off Toby’s knee and this time the goal counted. It came out of nothing and it was a straightforward ball into the box, where it should have been dealt with better. At 0-2 down, the chances of getting anything out of this match highly unlikely, the way we were playing. At last Spurs got the ball up to Son on the edge of the box and he played it to Harry Kane, who took it past two men and drilled a low shot that Schmeichel got behind. Leicester had made a defensive substitution straight after the goal, so they were happy to sit back on a two-goal lead but could Tottenham work out how to overcome the blanket defence. Jose brought Winks on for Aurier, as he tried to change things to make the team more offensive. Sissoko dropped back to right back, which is not his natural position, but needs must.
Winks collected a pass intended for Tielemans from Vardy stopped the chance for Leicester to get into the box. It wasn’t sticking when Spurs made passes, with Leicester moving the ball much more comfortably than Tottenham. Only a poor touch from Barnes saved Spurs from being exposed again, with Sissoko and Alderweireld caught up on the right wing.
Spurs were working the ball around with 70 minutes gone, but with Sissoko on the right, pushing forward, he is not the most productive wide player. Spurs won a corner when a lofted ball for Son was headed out, and from it, Bale’s dead ball found its way to the far post, where Son was falling as he hit it and the ball went into the ground and bounced up for Schmeichel to dive up and push away.
Kane’s loose throw that went straight to Vardy sent Barnes into the box and VAR was called upon to check whether Sissoko had dragged him back. This time it was no penalty but a soft free-kick given against Dier gave Fofana another chance to get a header in, but, once more, it flew over.
Reguilon got a low ball into the six-yard box, but the keeper grabbed it and then at the Spurs end Vardy twice and Barnes had shots, two blocked and then the last one saved by Hugo. When Dier tried to clear in his left-hand corner, the ball was blacked by Vardy, played on to Tielemens, who shot over when he should have done better. We were reduced to hitting route one balls up to Kane and it was a tactic that played into Leicester’s hands. There was little creativity once Lo Celso and Ndombele departed, which is a worry for the rest of the season, playing against sides set up in a 5-3-1-1 formation.
Tottenham’s approach in the first half allowed Leicester to establish a pattern of play that frustrated us and There was no pressure on their players when they had the ball. The visitors’ defence has hardly been impregnable, but they had an easy time of it today, being very rarely tested. It didn’t help that when Spurs did get forward, the ball often ran Leicester’s way.
It was much like the Everton match at the start of the season, when we just never got going. There was no evidence of the Spurs players being the term that Jose wanted them to be in the “All Or Nothing” documentary, other than lazy ones. Performances like this are not going to win us any trophies and not many points.
It might be a tougher Christmas than the players might have been hoping for.
Players took the knee before kick off.
|South Coast Big Club||0||Manchester City||1|
|Brighton & Hove Albion||1||Sheffield United||1|
|Manchester United||6||Leeds United||2|
|West Bromwich Albion||0||Aston Villa||3|
|Frank Lampard’s Chelsea||3||West Ham United London||0|
Premier League Table 2020-21
|5||Frank Lampard’s Chelsea||14||7||4||3||29||14||25||+15|
|7||South Coast Big Club||14||7||3||4||25||19||24||+6|
|10||West Ham United London||14||6||3||5||21||19||21||+2|
|17||Brighton & Hove Albion||14||2||6||6||16||22||12||-6|
|19||West Bromwich Albion||14||1||4||9||10||29||7||-19|