We’re through thank goodness but only in very typically Spurs fashion of course. Despite dominating the game the final whistle was met with as much relief as it was celebration, well on my sofa anyway.
For seventy minutes we were excellent; skilful and controlling with only Vorm’s nervousness and Walker’s rustiness (or maybe he was always like this?) to be concerned about, that and the fact that we didn’t kill off the game with a second goal after Eriksen’s stunner of a free-kick despite being so much on top. Kane led the line superbly, typically strong and direct, Dembèlè was prominent and clever behind him and Mason and Stambouli ruled in midfield. Dier (interesting that he was chosen above Fazio) and Vertonghen were comfortable and Davies was so much tighter on Campbell-Ryce than last week. He did lose him once, early in the game, Vorm fumbled the cross but then thankfully made it back to his line in time to keep out the follow up shot. It was a close shave but that was the only time we were in any danger until the brief flurry of substitutions around 70 minutes.
Dèmbèle had received a knock and a yellow card and was taken off for Paulinho – our midfield and grip on the game immediately looked less solid. They changed their attack bringing on a big lump and a kid. Within a few minutes two bolts from the blue turned the momentum and just about everything else their way. It could’ve been so much worse when one of their midgets was put clean through with none of our midfield tracking him. Vorm was massively out of position and had left one half of his goal completely exposed; what possessed Scougall (?) to belt it over the top rather than place it into an empty net and write Do Not Resuscitate on our ambitions I’ve no idea.
Lloris must play in the final.
We started to press again as extra time approached and Mason and Kane were unlucky when the ball didn’t quite fall for them but then came a thing of beauty. Eriksen made a run, Kane found him with a lovely weighted pass and our very very Great Dane finished calmly and expertly. For both goals the home keeper never moved, Eriksen tricked him and crucially left him unbalanced.
We were so much better than last week. The passing was quicker and slicker, we found space where in the first leg there was none and for the first three quarters of the game never gave them a look in. As usual Harry Kane was at the heart of this, what possessed Pochettino to play him where he did last week I’ve no idea, fingers crossed he’ll never do it again. I’ve also just about had enough of the wandering and ineffective Paulinho. At present I just don’t get the point of him. You can see Lamela become more determined and focused with every game, it’s the opposite with the Brazilian even though he’s in good form (!), he’s just wasting everyone’s time.
So Wembley and Chelsea await. We’re massive underdogs of course but will have Chadli and Bentaleb back and we’ve beaten them once and anything can happen on the day etc etc. Best thing is though that we’re there. Come March 1st, let’s make the most of it.
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