|LEICESTER CITY 2 (1)||TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 4 (1)|
|Date : – 23rd May 2021||Kick off : – 16.00|
|Competition : – Premier League||Venue : – King Power Stadium|
|Crowd : – 8,000|
|Referee : – Anthony Taylor (Greater Manchester)||Linesmen : – Mr. Gary Beswick; Mr. Adam Nunn|
|Fourth official : – Keith Stroud|
|VAR official : – Peter Bankes||VAR Assistant : – Lee Betts|
|Weather : – Rain before match; chilly|
|Spurs kicked off the first half attacking the North Stand end|
|Playing time : – 90 + 9 minutes
|LEICESTER CITY||TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR|
|Vardy (p) 17m 16s||Kane 40m 23s|
|Vardy (p) 51m 58s||Schmeichel (o.g.) 75m 56s|
|Bale 86m 01s|
|Bale 90+5m 04s|
|Bergwijn (foul on Iheanacho) 58|
|Winks (foul on Iheanacho) 83|
|LEICESTER CITY||TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR|
|1.||Kasper SCHMEICHEL (c) (o.g. )||1.
||Hugo LLORIS (c)|
|27.||Timothy CASTAGNE||2.||Matt DOHERTY|
|3.||Wesley FOFANA ( 24. Nampalys MENDY 21)||4.||Toby ALDERWEIRELD|
|4.||Caglar SOYUNCU||6.||Davinson SANCHEZ|
|11.||Mark ALBRIGHTON ( 17. Ayoze PEREZ 80)|
|8.||Youri TIELEMANS||5.||Pierre-Emile HOJBJERG|
|25.||Wilfried NDIDI||8.|| Harry WINKS
|7.||Heung-Min SON ( 14. Joe RODON 90+4)|
|10.||James MADDISON ( 21. Ricardo PEREIRA 62)||20.||DELE Alli ( 27. Lucas MOURA 68)|
|23.||Steven BERGWIJN ( 9. Gareth BALE 68 )|
|9.||Jamie VARDY||10.||Harry KANE|
|18.||Daniel AMARTEY||53.||Dane SCARLETT|
|20.||Hamza CHOUDHURY||11.||Erik LAMELA|
|26.||Dennis PRAET||45.||Carlos VINICIUS|
|Manager : – Brendan Rodgers||Manager : – Ryan Mason|
|Kit Supplier : – adidas||Kit Supplier : – Nike|
|Shirt Sponsor : – FBS Trade online||Shirt Sponsor : – AIA
|Shirt Sleeve Sponsor : – Bia Siagon||Shirt Sleeve Sponsor : – cinch
|Colours : –
||Colours : –|
|Images of kits courtesy of the marvellous Colours of Football website|
This match at Leicester had Europe riding on it for both sides and while it didn’t have quite everything, it was full of incident and goals, four of which went to Spurs, while Leicester could only manage two successful penalties.
Ryan Mason fielded a changed line-up because of injuries and illness, with Nile John and Dane Scarlett finding places on the bench as Tottenham kicked off the closing game of the season.
The match started off at a decent pace, but after a few minutes, it settled into a more genteel tempo. Defender Caglar Soyuncu played a loose pass out of defence that Winks intercepted and played to Bergwijn, who in turn played the ball outside right to Dele inside the box, but he was eased off the ball by Fofana. Spurs were not pressing too hard and that allowed the home team to play the ball around with space to find someone to receive it.
Soyuncu found space at a corner and with a free header could only loop it into Hugo Lloris’ hands and with ten minutes gone, Maddison fired in a 25-yard drive that Toby Alderweireld headed out for a corner. The simple folk of Leicester got riled up to use their Happy Clappers when Dele wrestled the ball off Thomas for a throw-in that the referee then gave the other way. When Vardy broke forward into the box, he got past Sanchez and Toby stuck out a leg with Vardy falling to earth. The referee waved play on as a lot of people know that Vardy is always keen to go down, but after the ball went dead, VAR made Taylor go to the TV to give a penalty. Sending Hugo the wrong way Vardy slotted it to the keeper’s bottom left corner to make it 1-0 to the Foxes.
Vardy went down in the box again a few minutes later and this time VAR didn’t think the referee got it wrong. Moving the ball forward, Winks sped up the passing and only a block by Mendy stopped Dele finding a pass through to Kane, with the Spurs striker turning in the box but because he didn’t go down, there was no hint of a penalty with players contacting him on two sides.
Reguilon almost compounded a terrible week, when he tried to play a pass across the pitch 25 yards form goal, but hit Iheanacho, who was clean through but slipped and his shot scooted well wide. It was only then that play was brought back for a handball by the Nigerian forward. Spurs worked the ball well and Bergwijn got into the box, with Thomas alongside him and a decision was given against the Spurs man, even though both players were pulling their linked arms.
The little passes that Spurs were trying to play into the area were being picked off and stray passes were giving the ball away at the back. The defence backed off Albrighton with 35 minutes gone and he struck an effort from 25 yards out that Hugo had to dive to his left to hold. Straight away, Spurs were in at the other end, with Dele playing a ball over the defence for Son to take on the six-yard line, clear of the blue shirts. Unfortunately, he had his back to goal and couldn’t get a shot away, so tried to play it back to Kane but was denied as the ball was put out for a corner.
From the corner, the ball went all the way across to Doherty. His shot was headed away but Son was alive to it on the right of the goal, pulling it back across goal, where a Leicester player got a touch on it to deflect it into the air. Underneath it as it came down was Harry Kane, who struck a hard volley from around the penalty spot that went through Schemichel’s legs to equalise. It was classic Kane and maybe the last we will see of it in a Lilywhite shirt, but he loves scoring against the Foxes.
Sanchez took a risk sliding into a block on Vardy when he ran beyond Alderweireld into the box, but it held the striker up long enough to avert any danger a couple of minutes before half-time.
At the start of the second half, Leicester were pushing forward and were dominating possession, but their only effort came from Mendy, whose 25-yarder was taken comfortably taken above his head. The ref was conned into giving another penalty when Vardy grabbed Sanchez’s arm before swan-diving to the grass with Taylor pointing to the spot. Same side and same result. I thought VAR was there to pick up clear and obvious errors. “Winning” a penalty is cheating … pure and simple.
Kane was in a good position after Son collected a mis-directed Leicester pass that gave him the chance to shoot from just outside the box that flew way over the bar. Bergwijn was struggling and took out Iheanacho, bring shown a yellow card and the home forward was in the Spurs six-yard box, but Hugo grabbed his shot low down to his right-hand side. As the game flowed end to end, Schmeichel elbowed
As we tried to attack, even the short passes that were being played were not reaching their target and it was making any sort of comeback harder to realise. With 25 minutes left Bergwijn came off with Gareth Bale replacing him and Moura took Dele’s place. The home team weren’t pressing as hard and Mason probably thought that they might get some joy running at the Foxes defence, but some of the Spurs players had a resigned look that the game was already up.
Looking like Ipswich Town of the 80s in their new kit, the home side were content to play the ball around and Alderweireld’s interception sent Son away on the left wing. A low ball into the box ended with Soyuncu slicing the ball behind for a corner, when a result like Reguilon’s on Wednesday. Mendy dragged Doherty down when the ball went over everyone from the corner and a couple of yards outside
This time when Son played it in, the ball was heading towards Davinson Sanchez until Schmeichel came for the ball, got it all wrong and the ball came off him into his own goal. He whinged about being fouled but for once, the keeper didn’t get all the protection they normally do. So was then fed in by Bale, shooting low from the left side of the goal, bringing a save by Schmeichel’s foot and then Son’s ball into the area was looking for Kane, but he may have been put off by a defender’s move in front of him, allowing the ball to go wide.
A fine ball from Doherty freed Bale down the right and he passed across the box for Kane. He lifted the ball over the defence for Moura, but Mendy got there first, falling on the ball with his arm making contact as he did so. With the home team’s hopes of Champions League football slipping away, Icheanacho looked to break away and Winks cynically tripped him on the halfway line collecting an expected yellow card.
Spurs broke once more, with Bale running through the middle and Kane moving to his right. He slipped it to Son 12 yards out and he dragged the ball under his sole for Harry Kane coming in behind him. He took the ball around Schmeichel and was pushed wide to the left, but he rolled it back to Bale coming onto the ball from 18 yards out to fire it low past Soyuncu on the goal-line. The Leicester players were desperately claiming that Kane had handballed when he scooped it over Schmeichel, but the vain pleas were denied by VAR and Spurs had the lead.
A corner for the home team saw their keeper join the attack, with a flick on finding Iheanacho inside the six-yard box to poke the ball at goal, but Hugo got down to it to scoop the ball out and the Leicester forward was offside anyway. Five added minutes was shown on the fourth official’s board and the silent home supporters suddenly stopped their Happy Clapping as results elsewhere were going against them.
Son was replaced by Rodon, as Mason considered the way that the game would go would involve high balls into the box. When Soyuncu smacked the ball against Tieleman’s arse, it went into Gareth Bale’s path and he ran forward, with Kane to his right acting as a diversion, taking it into the box, past Schmeichel and flicking the ball goal-wards, but it hit the foot of the keeper’s right-hand post. The ball bounced across the goal and Bale reacted to knock it over the line to make it 4-2 and to crush Leicester’s Champions League dreams. Harry probably wanted the pass to add to his goal total for the season (and possibly for the club) but he won the Golden Boot anyway, as his one goal took him clear at the top of that particular table.
It was a little flattering, as Leicester were sharper, but they soon faded and dropped off Tottenham, allowing Spurs to end the season with a win and to grab a place in the Europa Conference. With West Ham and Arsenal both winning, the only joy that we got out of the game was that we do have some form of European football and that we finish above the Arse again.
There is much to be decided and much to be done during the summer, but a new manager must be the first decision to be made, so that they have time to influence the players they want and work with the players they have. A win like this must not paper over the cracks that this has been a season where much has gone wrong and while the pandemic has had an effect on a number of clubs, there are issues that need to be sorted at Spurs … and quick.
John Lacy’s Lovechild
Vardy’s second penalty was his 150th career goal.
|Leeds United||3||West Bromwich Albion||1|
|Woolwich Wanderers||2||Brighton & Hove Albion||0|
|Wolverhampton Wanderers||1||Manchester United||2|
|West Ham United London||3||South Coast Big Club||0|
Premier League Table 2020-21
|6||West Ham United London||38||19||8||11||62||47||65||+15|
|15||South Coast Big Club||38||12||7||19||47||68||43||-21|
|16||Brighton & Hove Albion||38||9||14||15||40||46||41||-6|
|19||West Bromwich Albion||38||5||11||22||35||76||26||-41|