We were by far the better team in this one and deserved our win even if it was punched from the ‘2-1 with a late winner from Eriksen’ template we generally reserve for away games.
Pochettino made two changes from last weekend’s eleven. Dier was given a go at centre back in place of the ill Fazio and hapless Kaboul whilst Soldado took the place at the top of the side with Kane behind him. Eriksen and Chadli took the nominally wide positions in midfield with Stambouli and Dembele in the centre. Vertonghen’s early lucky deflection gave us a lead which we lost when the same player gave away a free kick in the ideal position for Seb Larsson. Vertonghen fouled Defoe, who was going nowhere, because the lino hadn’t flagged for offside. Stupid.
After constant pressure after half time the winner came when Townsend, on for Dembele, broke at pace and squared for Eriksen to score from the edge of the box via a post. It was the least we deserved as I said but we were nearly foiled as Hugo saved magnificently from Danny Graham in injury time to once again earn us points that would’ve been lost with a lesser man between the sticks.
To the surprise of most, Adebayor was named on the bench and after Soldado once again gave a display that made one wonder how we fell for this particular con trick, (26 million?) he was given his chance. Few players in my experience of Spurs watching provoke the emotion and reaction this man now does. There were boos when he took the field, hysterical howls every time he stopped sprinting at opposition players in possession and laughter when his control let him down. The truth is that he did way more in his half an hour than the ineffectual and anonymous Spaniard did in double the time. A motivated Adebayor would be a huge boost to Pochettino and Harry Kane and to the whole side as we hit big game after big game. I think that if the coach thinks it’s worth giving him a chance then we should be getting behind him; we’re the ones who will benefit in the end.
Other thoughts from the game – it was one of Stambouli’s better ones, he was strong and authoritative, Townsend gave hints as to why we should persist with him when he came on, Eric Dier looks far from the finished product, Eriksen should be left in the centre and Chris Foy is a knobber. Consistently rubbish, week after week.
We miss Mason, Bentaleb, Fazio and even Lamela.
The semifinal first leg next and then Pulis Bromwich Albion. No rest for those for experiencing middle amounts of moderate success. COYS.
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