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MATCH REPORT

Wenger feeling the heat in derby defeat

A Kyle Walker strike proved to be the game-changer as Tottenham overcame Arsenal in the first North London derby of the season.

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A Kyle Walker strike proved to be the game-changer as Tottenham overcame Arsenal in the first North London derby of the season.

The right-back charged forward, dodging an ensuing Gervinho challenge before lashing home past Wojciech Szczesny, who in turn could have done more to keep out Walkers effort.

The early October sun was beating down on White Hart Lane, but it was perhaps the Gunners who started the brighter of the two sides.

The only change from last weeks 2-1 win over Wigan saw Jermain Defoe rewarded for his goalscoring exploits against Shamrock Rovers in mid-week replace Sandro as Redknapp reverted back to a 4-4-2, Rafael Van der Vaart moving out to the right as Luka Modric took his place alongside Scott Parker in midfield.

Packing three into the midfield, Wenger’s side controlled the game from the middle as Parker and Modric struggled to contain Mikel Arteta, Francis Coquelin and Ramsey in the early encounters.

However, Spurs crafted out the first real opportunity of the game, Emmanuel Adebayor, making his first appearance against his former side since his loan move from Manchester City, was thwarted by the back-tracking Coquelin but his clearance only went as far as Parker, who worked his way into the box only to see his effort blocked well by Szczesny.

Arsenal also had their fair share of chances, as Theo Walcott, Robin van Persie and Per Mertesacker all threatened, but never really tested, Brad Friedel in the Spurs goal during some exerted pressure around the 15-minute mark.

Some good work from Gareth Bale down the left wing saw him pick out Van der Vaart in the box, but the Dutchman scuffed his effort over while Mikel Arteta flashed a free-kick across the goal face before Szczesny was again called into action getting down well to block the 28-year-olds point blank effort.

Gervinho and Walcott again threatened Friedel, but to no avail and the visitors were made to pay for their wastefulness with the home side taking the initiative five minutes before the break.

Defoe broke forward down the middle, squaring to Adebayor who in turn lofted a delightful ball across the box for Van der Vaart who, with a hint of hand-ball, bought the ball down well and buried into the far corner on the half volley.

The goal sent the home support into the raptures and turned out to be Spurs 10,000th goal in all competitive games.

Bale came close either side of half-time to doubling the advantage for the hosts but Arsenal were back on level-terms seven minutes after the restart.

Song broke down the left-hand side before the Cameroon international put a teasing ball across the Spurs box which Ramsey duly got on the end off, burying from close-range past Friedel.

The goal sparked Arsenal into life and for the next few minutes, Spurs found themselves under the cosh as the Gunners looked to add a second yet it was Adebayor who came closest to adding Spurs second of the afternoon only for Szczesny to turn his low-drive away for a corner.

Sandro replaced Van der Vaart just after the hour mark and it was the Brazilian who instigated what turned out to be the winning goal. His break down the left found Modric in the box, his effort blocked by Song but with Walker breaking forward from right-back, his 30-yard effort beat Szezesny into the bottom corner and saw Spurs take the lead once more.

The 20-year-old’s first goal for Spurs proved to just the kick that sparked them back into life, Bale first dragging his shot wide after a mix-up in the Arsenal defence before twice saw two good efforts go begging, the first well saved Szczesny, the second a audacious chip that drifted just wide of the far post.

It needed of mattered as Spurs held out for the win, the clubs fourth Premier League victory on the bounce while adding to Arsenal’s miserable start to the season.

“They had a lot of possession in the first half. It was difficult, they played three in midfield,” Redknapp said after the game.

“So they were always going to hold the sway in terms of possession. We had the two (players) in there.

“But we got the goal before half-time. To be honest, I nearly changed it (Spurs’ formation) at half-time. I nearly made the change and thickened us up in there.

“But I thought, ‘well, let’s see how we go’. They (Arsenal) got off to a better start in the second half, got the goal, and watching the game you would have thought, ‘they are in the ascendency. We could be in trouble’.

“But we upped it. We got better and stronger and we took over. We deserved the win in the second half, I thought we were excellent. We had all the good chances.”

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ARTICLES

Kane gets 7.5/10 – Player ratings as Tottenham beat Brighton to go 5th on the table

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Tottenham 2-1 Brighton: Tottenham Player Ratings

A resurgent Tottenham side came from behind to defeat Brighton 2-1 to go fifth in the league, 3 points off Chelsea. Spurs started from where they left off against Chelsea – a listless performance in the first half.

Harry Kane thought he had given his side the lead only for the goal to be ruled out for being marginally offside. Instead, it was Brighton who took the lead through Adam Webster, who took advantage of some lacklustre defending to put Brighton ahead.

Spurs came out fighting in the second half and were lucky not to concede again when Aaron Connolly missed a great chance to score his third goal of the season.

Tottenham equalized in the 53rd minute when Harry Kane scored from the rebound after his initial shot was saved by Matt Ryan.

Buoyed by the equalizer, Spurs surged forward in search of the second goal. Their efforts paid off in the 72nd minute when substitute Christian Eriksen put the ball through to an overlapping Serge Aurier, who set up Dele Alli.

Brighton tried to hit back through Pascal Gross and Aaron Mooy, who both had shots from distance. Thankfully, it was not to be as Spurs held on for what can be an important win in the race to finish in the top-4.

We maintain our impressive Boxing day record, having not lost on the day since 2003 and next play bottom-placed Norwich on 28th December.

Tottenham Player Ratings

Paulo Gazzaniga (7/10)

Kept things simple and did not lose his head like he did against Chelsea. There was nothing he could have done to stop Webster’s header. Did well to prevent Gross twice in the second half.

Serge Aurier (7/10)

Better in attack than in defence. Provided the assist for Alli’s winner with a well-timed run to get in behind the Brighton defence. One of his better performances.

Toby Alderweireld (6/10)

Should have done better against Webster and was outjumped for the Brighton goal. Tried to play out from the back as Spurs chased the game in the first half.

Richard Heathcote/Getty Images
(Richard Heathcote/Getty Images )

Davinson Sanchez (6/10)

Didn’t do much wrong and was solid in defence. His distribution, however, leaves much to be desired.

Jan Vertonghen (6/10)

Solid in defence. Took too much time on the ball and tried to play out from the back without much success.

Harry Winks (4/10)

Looked to have set up Kane to give Spurs the lead, only for the goal to be chalked off for offside. Poor performance from the midfielder who lacked any sort of impact otherwise.

Came off for Eriksen in the 68th minute. Picked up a booking in the first half, which rules him out of the match against Norwich.

Moussa Sissoko (5/10)

Another player who will be suspended for the game against Norwich after picking up a needless booking. Was wasteful in the first half and gave away possession often. His passing let him down and his decision making needs work.

Dele Alli (6/10)

A quiet first half but came alive in the second with a number of runs into the box. He took the goal with composure and nearly grabbed another late on, only for Ryan to push his shot over. Continued his goal-scoring run under Mourinho with his 5th goal since the Portuguese’s arrival.

Ryan Sessegnon (5/10)

Started off brightly but faded as the game went by. Hit the post with an effort that was ruled offside and also went close at the back post from Kane’s cross. Came off in the 56th minute for Giovani Lo Celso.

Lucas Moura (7/10)

Was largely quiet in the first half but came to life after the break. He dropped deeper to win the ball and tried his best to start off the attacks. A nuisance for the Brighton defence and was one of Spurs’ best players on the night. Substituted in the 76th minute for Eric Dier as Spurs tried to see out the match.

Harry Kane (7.5/10)

Tottenham’s best player of the night. He continued his brilliant record of scoring on Boxing day for the fifth straight year. With his 8th Boxing Day goal, he is now only a goal behind Robbie Fowler in the race to the most goals scored.

Worked hard for his team and held the ball up well. Also had a goal ruled out in the first half for offside.

olga Akmen/AFP via Getty Images
(Tolga Akmen/AFP via Getty Images)

More Tottenham News

Substitutes

Giovani Lo Celso (6/10)

A better performance from the Argentine than we have seen of late. Kept the ball moving and played deeper, allowing Eriksen to push forward.

Christian Eriksen (7/10)

Threaded the ball across to Aurier, who then assisted Alli for the winner. Almost got himself a goal late on in an impactful substitute appearance.

Eric Dier (6/10)

Replaced Moura as Spurs looked to see out the game. Reinforced the midfield and kept it simple. Did his job.

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Academy News

Tottenham U19s beat Club Brugge at the end of a gruelling campaign at the Terborg Tournament

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According to a report by Tottenham Hotspur’s official website, the heroics of our U19 midfielder Paris Maghoma helped secure a much-needed 1-0 win against Brugge in the Terborg tournament in Holland.

We endured a challenging time in the group stages and it is great that we somehow managed to clinch a 5th-place finish at the end of it. This does come as great news for our younger players and from here on, they can only go forward.

In general, our U19 side has been quite promising in recent times and the display against Brugge was certainly yet another encouraging sign. Our defence was quite commendable and Brooklyn Lyons-Foster made quite a mark after returning from an injury he had sustained in March.

The likes of Troy Parrott and midfielder Elliot Thorpe came close to scoring but they failed to convert the chances. However, the U19s were lucky enough to have Maghoma in the mix since his goal ultimately proved to make all the difference.

All in all, it goes without saying that this was a good learning experience for the youngsters. They managed to sandwich a victory against Heerenveen between losses to Midtjylland and Atletico Paranaense but the win against Brugge is certainly a brilliant way to end the academy season.

Scott Parker’s men will now brace themselves for the new season and some of the players will be pushing for greater opportunities as well. However, given the way they have performed, it looks like the future is bright for the lot.

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Academy News

Chelsea U18 0-3 Tottenham U18 – Blues handed first home defeat in three years as Spurs youngsters impress

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Tottenham U18 caused a nasty upset against our London rivals Chelsea, as our youngsters beat the Blues at Cobham in an exciting 0-3 victory. To have notched up such a huge victory against a side that has been exemplary in all aspects of the game is truly commendable.

Reo Griffiths, Rodel Richards and Dilan Markanday scored some stunning goals to put us in the driving seat and it is safe to say that we deserved that win. As if beating Chelsea was not enough, this win marks the Blues’ first home defeat at Cobham in the last 3 years.

A win is definitely important for us at this stage but more than anything else, the calmness and maturity displayed by our U18 side deserves praise. Our defenders did a brilliant job at the back and our attackers left no stone unturned to threaten and dominate the home side’s backline.

Griffiths scored a screamer of an opening goal to put us in the lead. Although we were the better team in the first-half, Chelsea were awarded a penalty right after the break. A few nervy moments followed but De Bie made a brilliant save to deny the hosts.

The save proved to be a turning point in the game since Chelsea could not come back into the game despite fighting hard. Eventually, Rodel Richards chipped in with the second goal in the 74th minute which was followed by Dilan Markanday converting Tariq Hinds’ cross to smash the third and final goal of the match.

Markanday was truly a standout performer for the side and he was a constant threat to Chelsea. He was aided by a flurry of crosses and ample support from right-back Maxi Tainio and the duo linked up quite well to deliver stunning results on the field.

As a Tottenham fan, it is heart-warming to see our youngsters perform like this and here’s to hoping they continue their fine form.

 

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ARTICLES

“We do things the hard way”, “Sell Llorente and Sissoko please” Tottenham fans vent out anger after shock 2-2 draw

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Rochdale scored an extra-time equaliser as they earned an FA Cup fifth-round replay against Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley following a 2-2 draw at Spotland.

Tottenham thought they had won the game when Dele Alli had controversially earned a penalty and Harry Kane made no mistake, stepping up and firing past the goalkeeper. But 30-year-old Steve Davies sent the home crowd into ecstasy by netting the leveller two minutes into stoppage time.

The game didn’t start in our favour as Rochdale made the most of the relaid pitch to score a fantastically worked opener through Ian Henderson. It was Henderson’s 6th FA Cup goal of the season and interestingly, no player has scored more.

Fernando Llorente had Spurs’ best chance of the opening 45 minutes but spurned it from inside the area when he should have at least hit the target.

However, Lucas Moura, starting his first game for Spurs since making a winter transfer deadline day move from Paris Saint-Germain, equalised after the break. Moussa Sissoko found Moura in space and the Brazilian took a touch before hammering home his first goal for the club.

In the 88th minute, Alli was fouled in the box by Harrison McGahey and Kane stepped up to smash home to give Spurs the lead. But minutes later, Davies set Spotland bouncing again when he calmly found the bottom corner in the injury time to send Dale to Wembley for the replay.

After a fantastic 2-2 draw at Juventus in the Champions League, this wasn’t exactly the performance Spurs fans had hoped for.

Hugely disappointed with the performance when we could have won at Rochdale and moved into the quarterfinals. Here is how our fans reacted after the blow of the final whistle.

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