A look back at Spurs 3-3 Arsenal

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“Chuffed but gutted” was how one Spurs fan described his feelings on the train after the game. “I’m going to start supporting Leyton Orient” were the words of a very deflated looking gooner. The Spurs fan pretty much summed the evening up. Seemingly down and out at 3-1 you couldn’t help but feel proud with the way the side kept going, fought back and in the end had the best chances to win the game, hence the ‘gutted’.

Led by a reborn Van der Vaart, a battling Crouch, a tireless Modric and from left back an influential Assou-Ekotto we threw off the disappointment engendered by giving away three soft early goals and by the end Arsenal had their keeper to thank for getting anything out of the game. Both Modric and Sandro could’ve delivered killer blows but instead Szczesny kept the ball out without knowing much about it. He also tipped over a Crouch header and stopped a scuffed VdV shot.

The opening period was dominated by Nasri, Fabregas and Walcott as we struggled to keep up with the tempo being set. Huddlestone, Pavlyuchenko and Bale in particular spent a lot of time watching the ball zip around in front of them, unable to get involved. By the end though, it was Nasri and Walcott who had been silenced and subbed as we pushed for the winner.

Huddlestone got a second wind in the second half and was much more effective in trying to deliver the ball quickly forward to Van der Vaart, Modric and Crouch.  Kaboul came on to deliver power and pace (and not a little confidence) down the right and the enforced replacement of Bale was something of a blessing given the pale performance the PFA player of the year in the first half. Last Wednesday his influence on the game much diminished when Sergio Ramos took him out big style. Szczesny gave him the same treatment upending him twice in a couple minutes. Diaby’s early challenge from behind on Modric plus the wild tackling from the same man, Song and Djourou when under pressure at the start of the second half indicated that Arsenal were quite happy to stick the boot in if they thought it would help.

As well as not getting the three points to put us closer to Man City, the fact that we started so slowly compared to the visitors was the main disappointment. We can’t obviously afford to keep going two goals behind in these games. With Huddlestone and Bale still coming back from injury and Van der Vaart nominally on the right, one look at the team sheets, which showed Arsenal with five across the middle, was enough to suspect that we were going to be in trouble in midfield. In the end we countered it by adding a bit of steel and power and going more route one than we’d really like to have seen. Crouch did cause problems all evening though and you do have to go with what you’ve got. As well as the big man we had in Van der Vaart and Modric the class, technique, spirit and leadership required to battle back and show the ‘mental strength’ that Wenger mistakenly rambles on about when referring to his own side. In the second half when they needed their players to stand up and try and wrestle back the initiative they all went missing.

It was a terrific match and one of the games of the season. The crowd were superb. Our players started slowly, battling with their own tactical set up as well as the opposition and in the end, oh so nearly came out on top. As the man said, “chuffed but gutted”.

By MF

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1 COMMENT

  1. Fairplay thats pretty much how it happened, seems like the Spurs Arsenal games is now one of the most consistently entertaining fixtures around, and we are one of the most entertaining teams (for all the wrong reasons I may add) as are you lot. I can only laugh after games like this, we've now dropped a staggering 13 points from winning positions this season! So don't pat yourself on the back too much for the comeback, anyone can against us these days. Having said that,you lot looked good and RDV was class. Good luck for the rest of your season

      • jack you doughnut! yes he wins the ball first but he takes bale out of the game knowing what he was doing the wink proving it. dirty scum! yes we all know it wasnt a foul but is it ok to go round hurting fellow pros as long as you win the ball? imagine what wenger would have said if that was gomez winking after taking fabregas out!

  2. Thought the side looked much more balanced when Sandro came on. He could be a really important player next season, just sat in front of the back four as the anchor. What a ping from Huddlestone. And yeah, it was a shame Szczesny got fortunate with the Modric and Sandro saves, he didn’t deserve those bits of luck after crocking Bale and then trying to look cool. And what about the little Gooner mug Wilshere waving an imaginary yellow card? Ridiculous. But great effort from the lads. COYS.

  3. Its Tom THUNDERSTONE! We realy missed his long range efforts. No one else in the squad can do that. Felt we would have troubled them more if we had Bale and Lennon running down the wings. But who to leave out? Pav? Tough one.

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