Tottenham Hotspur managed to grind out a win away to Luton Town in the afternoon sunshine today, despite being down to ten men for much of the encounter.
Let’s take a look at the five things we learned from the match:
Top of the League!
It may end up only being for a short while, but Tottenham Hotspur are top of the league! Nothing to really celebrate in October, but it is a sign of the progress Ange has managed to make in such a short space of time, at the very least.
Spurs Have Heart
Let down by Yves Bissouma, the Spurs lads showed some real heart today. Grabbing one goal against the run of play is one thing, but grinding out the defensive performance to earn a clean sheet is another. We have spoken so much about Ange-ball of late, but Spurs got to show the gritty side to them today too. The lads off the bench worked so hard for the team, and the likes of Romero and Micky put on a defending masterclass.
10 Minute Game
Forget about 90 minutes plus added time, Tottenham should have won the game inside ten minutes today. First, Dejan Kulusevski put a beautiful cross on a plate for Richarlison at the back post, only for the Brazilian to turn it wide. Two minutes later and Richarlison then failed to find the back of the net in a one-on-one. And finally, Pedro Porro got in on the act when he was played through, only to miss the target completely in his one-on-one. Classic Premier League, you miss your chances, you often pay for it in some way.
For the first ten minutes of the game, Spurs were in full flow. Luton Town made it easy for the Lilywhites, allowing creative players to turn on the ball and pick passes. But once they shut up shop a little more, Tottenham crumbled in the centre of the pitch. Ange-ball is all about breaking the lines and flicking balls around the corner to turn defence into attack. Porro, Udogie, Bissouma, and Sarr really struggled to get themselves facing goal and bursting through the middle of the pitch today. Players were not brave enough on the ball and there was way too much sideways passing. Strangely enough, the Lilywhites clicked back into gear in the second 45 when they were down to ten. Perhaps Ange really got into them at half-time.
Yves Bissouma banned
Bissouma will now sit out the match at home to Fulham next week. That was always likely to be the case because he was one yellow away from a match ban anyway. But the nature of the ban is the problem here. Diving on a yellow card against Luton Town is ridiculous. Cannot be defended at all and Yves really let the team and the fans down today. Alasdair Gold actually revealed that the red card supersedes the first yellow too, so Bissouma will still likely pick up another ban in a few weeks.