Everton – can it get any better? Yes, against Bournemouth

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Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Dom Le Roy

After our victory over Arsenal in the Cup match we thought it couldn’t get any better, at least so soon after, and then we travelled to Liverpool to face Everton for the last Premier game before Christmas.
The coach trip up to Everton was full of optimism, and the team were on a high. We got off the coach and entered a typical Northern rainy weather day. But that didn’t dampen our spirits. After the usual preparations, the clock ticked away to near deadline time.

All out for a warm-up, the Spurs supporters showed their enthusiasm by loudly applauding the team. Back in for last-minute preparations, out again, the customary handshakes, team photos and then to their positions.

The whistle was blown and then after 21 minutes disaster struck. Walcott, yes, Walcott the Arsenal reject, scores and then goes over the top in his celebrations (the Spurs crowd voiced their anger towards him). But our heads didn’t drop. Granted, a few years ago – before Pochettino – we would have already started packing our bags and booked the taxi, but those days are over. We didn’t let a Walcott goal phase us, oh, no, Son showed us what he thought of the ex-Arsenal Walcott’s goal by responding with a magnificent goal of his own. Walcott and his teammates stood in shock as we celebrated and the Spurs supporters went wild.

Daddy Christmas – the bearded child tickler – was coming down one of our chimney’s and the home side thought it was there’s, suddenly the wind got knocked out of them and all they could do was sit in silence. But the silence was going to get worse for them as Alli wanted to pull his cracker as well, and did he pull a cracker, he scored the goal that put us in front. Our fans and the dugout erupted while the players celebrated. I predicted a 2-1 result and here they were putting it on a platter for me. But it wasn’t over by anybody’s calculations yet. There was still 10 minutes to go before the half-time whistle went. Were they going to regroup, we thought and show us that our goal was just a blip… no, we greedily got another one, this time it was from the master Kane.

Three-one up and it was time to go in at halftime for that well-earnt break. A quick team talk, substitution (Lamela for Alli) and then back out on the pitch. Three minutes later Eriksen scored a superlative goal. Now we were 4-1 up. By this time the home crowd started to leave in their droves, probably thinking about Christmas and what Santa Claus was going to bring them, in the hope of taking their thoughts away from the disaster they were witnessing.

Sigurdsson got one back and momentarily stopped the exodus away from Goodison Park.

But we continued wave after wave, throwing everything at their goal mouth until suddenly “Nice One Son” broke through and scored again. Five-two and we hadn’t even broke sweat yet. Finally the rest of the Everton supporters – who were too stubborn to see what their fleeing compatriots were seeing – got the message and started glumly walking away from their seats. Our supporters were loving it. Christmas had truly, madly come a couple of days early. We could go home, back to our loved ones, or just the silence of the four walls, with happiness in our hearts. But, hang on a minute, it wasn’t over yet, and the “the One Season Wonder” scored his second goal. This made it 6-2, the highest scoring Premier league match this season. What the ffffuuuu… Was it a hallucination? Or the turning point of many years of heartache into an actual title challenging season? My god! There was a mixture of feeling stunned, exhilaration, sweat and phasing between two realities (ok, maybe I am overdoing it… but… it is Christmas!).

The home supporters had to wait another 16 minutes – at least those that were left – for them to be finally put out of their misery. They bolted, we stayed and applauded our team, then the team went over to the away ended and in return the fans applauded them.

We travelled back, prepared for Christmas, then before you could say “hey presto” Boxing Day had arrived and this time we were facing the Cherries at Wembley.

Could it get any better than the Everton game? Don’t be silly, miracles or goal rushes only come once in a while. But we hoped to win, and our confidence and belief were strong.

So, the cherries, it was. We didn’t have to wait long before a magnificent shot, after 16 minutes, aimed at the goal, past the goalkeeper and into the net, all thanks to Eriksen. Twenty-three minutes later Son got into the act by scoring our second. Only 23 minutes gone and we were 2-0 up. It was Christmas, so we thought… that will do nicely, but Spurs were having done of it. Moura wanted to get into the act and scored to make it 3-0 after 35 minutes. The half-time whistle blew and we went for our teas, restrooms, chats or whatever one was supposed to do at half-time. You could hear the fans chanting, applauding, singing team songs and being in a great spirits.

But now we’ve got our three goals we can sit back and take it easy. After all, we had done pretty well. But the team thought otherwise, more so Son and Kane. The Nice One Son & the one season wonder had other ideas. Kane first, after 61 minutes, which was followed by Son 9 minutes later. By then the Cherries were punch-drunk, feeling dazed and wondering if they had phased into the twilight-zone of goal-fests.
To the relief of the Cherries the whistle blew, we smiled, they walked off disheartened. Our thought now moved to Saturday and Wembley were we will face the Wolves.

We were delighted, the fans stayed after the whistle to applaud the team and show that true Tottenham Christmas spirit… probably more spirit in them than out. But it was Christmas, and if you can’t show your merriment then, when can you? After all, it was the magnificent Spurs that were the benefactor of their spirit (or was that the otherway around?).

We left Wembley to continue our Christmas period and wait patiently for Saturday to come along and show even more magic and what we truly are capable of.

As for City, they again dropped points to allow us to leapfrog them into second, Arsenal and Chelsea stay below us. Unfortunately, Liverpool keeps marching on undefeated, but I am sure somewhere along the line they will come unstuck. Their next couple of games are against Arsenal and United. It isn’t often that you would want these two to win, but on this occasion, and for the benefit of our team, they must go with our blessing and hopefully stop Liverpool in their tracks.

Happy New year and enjoy.

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