Three goals, three points and three injuries. Well I assume Kaboul was injured, he was on the field when Eriksen scored, and off it when Tromso kicked off. Perhaps he’d been kidnapped? The perfect distraction crime.
As expected this was a comfortable win with the Norwegians struggling to make an impression all game. League One standard maybe, though I’m sure the currently rampant O’s would’ve wiped them off the park the way they’re doing with everyone else at the moment. It’s good to see a win, it’s the injuries that are frustrating though. This is a competition that no-one takes any real interest in until April and here we are already wondering whether we’ll have our first choice left back or midfield available at the weekend. Very annoying as I say.
Still, without Dembélé being hacked down and carried off we wouldn’t have been treated to another Christian Eriksen show. That man is some player, little weighted passes, shimmys and dummys, dribbles, angled probing balls, curled free-kicks and to top it off a superb floated shot into the top corner from 25 yards. What a treat. Also in sparkling form was Paulinho who had to come on after a midfield wobble when Holtby moved into the centre. He was one of the few able to match Eriksen for cleverness and put in a fine cameo.
All over the pitch we were quicker, more skilful and stronger than them and we should’ve won by more. The goals we scored were fine ones but there was a missing element of fluidity, especially for periods in the second half when we laboured to string passes together and were a bit sloppy at the back. Erik Lamela looks a bit of an enigma so far, the touch and close control is there to see but despite his beautiful weighted ball for Defoe’s first he was mostly peripheral. He perhaps just needs to get his feet further under the table before we see the best of what does look to be a talented and quick witted player. He’s a tad willowy, there’ll be some boots flying round on Sunday that I hope he’s strong enough to cope with.
The second goal came after an astute pass from Holtby, not his first or last of the night. Defoe finished expertly as he did for the first goal. Holtby carried on where he left off against Tbilisi, he looks energetic and imaginative and he and Sigurdsson will play key roles during the season, albeit mostly as replacements for one of the Magnificent Seven.
I’m really cheesed off by Kaboul going off, him at full fitness is a far better bet than Dawson I reckon. Still, one goal conceded in seven games now, not too shabby, so what do I know? Anzhi away next up on October 3rd.
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