Opinion: Five things we learned from Tottenham’s 1-0 win over Crystal Palace

Tottenham Hotspur were back to winning ways this afternoon in North London as they picked up all three points with a 1-0 victory over Crystal Palace.

Let’s take a look at the five things we learned:

Pedro Porro
(Photo by Craig Mercer/MB Media/Getty Images)

The sweet relief of boredom – 

Tottenham fans were finally treated to a rather boring game! After weeks of conceding a hatful in the opening 20 minutes and losing points at the death, the plucky Lilywhites finally saw out a 1-0 win lacking in meaningful chances for either side. Boring football has never tasted so sweet.

Mason’s hybrid system – 

Ryan Mason made a significant switch to the defence today, with Spurs playing with a back four out of possession and a back three in possession. The defensive four consisted of Emerson Royal, Cristian Romero, Clement Lenglet, and Ben Davies. When attacking, Davies would push up and leave the remaining trio as the back three, joining Pedro Porro on the other side as a wing-back. It has to be said, Spurs looked pretty solid at the back and dangerous in attack at times.

Harry Kane moves into second – 

Spurs may be a long way off Arsenal in the league table, but Harry Kane moved into second today with his goal against Crystal Palace. With 209 goals, he is now one clear of Wayne Rooney in the all-time Premier League standings, with Alan Shearer very much in his sight.

Pedro Porro unleashed – 

Porro was unshackled from a lot of his defensive responsibilities this afternoon, with Emerson Royal and Cristian Romero behind him. He played as a midfielder when out of possession and then a wing-back when Spurs were on the ball, providing constant width and a driving force down the right. Not only was his cross perfect to assist Harry Kane at the end of the first half, but he was arguably Tottenham’s most potent attacking threat throughout the 90. Interestingly, he also seems to be on set-pieces now too.

The race for Europa Conference League – 

With Tottenham winning and Aston Villa losing, Tottenham’s pursuit of European football was boosted. However, they still have the likes of Liverpool and Brighton to contend with if they want Europa League. In all honesty, a lot of Spurs fans would probably rather miss out altogether and concentrate on a meaningful rebuild next season.

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