After dropping points against Chelsea in the 0-0 draw at White Hart Lane and subsequent 1-1 with West Bromwich Albion at the Hawthorns, Tottenham missed out on even one point after their surprising defeat against Newcastle in front of another sell out crowd.
Coming into this game, Mauricio Pochettino’s side knew that with a win they would find themselves climb into the top four. Harry Kane, as expected, was brought back into the side up front after he was rested in the 4-1 demolition of Monaco in midweek, which ensured that the Lilywhites finished top of their Europa League group. However, a surprise inclusion was Tom Carroll who made his first Spurs Premier League start following his mature performance on Thursday. Contrastingly, Newcastle were unchanged from the side that beat Liverpool 2-0 last Sunday.
Steve McClaren admitted in the lead up to the game that he was hoping to stifle Spurs from making a quick start, however within the first minute that plan almost faltered. Kane cut inside off the left flank before looking for the bottom corner after just a minute played, though Rob Elliot was on hand to make a low save to his right. Minutes later it was the visitors who looked threatening after Siem de Jong’s curling effort from just outside the box was blocked, to his dismay, by teammate Papiss Cisse as the midfielder looked for the top corner.
With the hosts on top, Eric Dier showed great determination to impose his manager’s pressing style by winning a challenge in midfield against Georginio Wijnaldum, before drilling his shot just wide. Christian Eriksen then cut inside from the right but his 25 yard effort drifted wide of Elliot’s left hand post.
Erik Lamela, looking to add to his hat-trick in midweek, almost stylishly grabbed another goal. Tom Carroll played in Rose near the byline before the latter rolled a low pass into the feet of Lamela, who’s finessed effort forced an unbelievable finger tip save from Elliot. Eriksen and Kane then combined on the edge of the box, before the latters header was met by the on rushing Lamela who again forced another great save from the Newcastle goalkeeper. From the resulting corner, Spurs finally took a well deserved lead. Eriksen’s in-swinging corner to the near post was met by the towering Dier who powered his header past Elliot, who, despite getting a hand to it, could not deny the Spurs midfielder with 38 minutes played.
Soon after the restart, Moussa Sissoko played Cisse away on goal, though with just Lloris to beat, he could only miscue his low effort inches wide of the post. At the other end, Kane then had a 25 yard effort which forced an acrobatic diving save from Elliot. Soon after, substitute Heung-min Son found Eriksen who, again, had his effort saved low by the Newcastle shot stopper.
Rose was then adjudged to have handballed a Darryl Janmaat cross near the byline which gave the visitors a set-piece from a dangerous position. Jack Colback’s free kick came to Coloccini who headed the ball back across the six yard box finding the head of Chancel Mbemba, who’s deft touch forced problems for Lloris, before Alexsandar Mitrovic tapped in an equaliser on the line after 73 minutes. Mitrovic then came within inches of giving Newcastle a shock lead, but he just couldn’t connect with Sissoko’s ball across the box.
No one was expecting what happened next. Wijnaldum chipped a pass into the path of Mitrovic before he found Ayoze Perez, who beat Lloris at his near post in stoppage time.
The result which ends Spurs’ unbeaten run of 14 League games, and which maintains Newcastle’s record from the previous two seasons in which they have taken all three points at the Lane. Pochettino now takes his current side to his former club, where they play Southampton at St Mary’s Stadium next Saturday.
It was a triumphant 4-1 win at White Hart Lane as Mauricio Pochettino’s side ensured they finished top of their group in terrific fashion, thanks to an Erik Lamela hat-trick.
Tottenham Hotspur went into the game knowing that they had qualified for the next stage of the competition, whilst Monaco needed a win at White Hart Lane and had to hope that Anderlecht would stutter at home against Qarabag.
Josh Onomah made his first start for the club, whilst Nabil Bentaleb and Nacer Chadli had recovered from their injuries to claim positions on the bench alongside 18 year old, Cameron Carter-Vickers. Kevin Wimmer, Tom Carroll, Kieran Trippier, Clinton N’Jie and Ben Davies also made rare starts, with Hugo Lloris, Toby Alderweireld, Eric Dier, Erik Lamela and Heung-min Son making up the rest of the first eleven.
The North London outfit opened the scoring within two minutes as N’Jie and Davies pressed the Ligue 1 team high up the pitch, with the latter’s cross along the ground found Lamela, who neatly finished beyond the Subasic like he had done on Matchday 2 of the Europa League.
The Argentine added to his tally on the 15 minute mark, when the former Roma man ran onto a long ball which was headed on by Son, and shot from outside the penalty area in an attempt which Subasic should have done better to have saved. It was almost 3-0 only two minutes later, when Lamela turned provider for Son who had the ball in the net, but his effort was correctly ruled out for offside.
Nonetheless, the hat-trick was completed in the 38th minute when Lamela’s 5th Europa League goal of the season hit the back of the net following Son’s tidy pass, after N’Jie had again won the ball high up the pitch. The right-footed strike was neatly tucked away at the near post to culminate a strong attacking first half from the side, where all 3 of Lamela’s shots had resulted in goals for the home side.
However, there were concerns over Eric Dier, who was forced to leave the pitch in the first half after picking up a kick to his ankle. Whilst he did stay on the pitch for a few more minutes, he was substituted in place of the returning Bentaleb who was welcomed back to the squad to make his fifth appearance of the season. However, the pitch side commentator noted that as the England international came off the pitch, he said, “Don’t worry gaffer, I’m fine.”
The second half began with a slower pace than the first, with Onomah getting close to his first goal for the club until Subasic made a save with his foot which saw the young Englishman’s shot go wide of the post. The 18-year-old had started the move where he played the ball to Trippier who drilled it across to Son, but his poor first touch set the ball at the feet of Onomah who couldn’t take advantage.
But Monaco were the first to score in the second half, with El Shaarawy curling the ball into the net from 25 yards out on the hour mark to make the score 3-1. It was at this point too that Chadli came onto the pitch for Lamela.
After a 20 minute period of neither side getting into full flow, Carroll added a fourth goal for Spurs after latching on to a loose ball inside Monaco’s penalty area, and took the ball to the by-line where he neatly finished past the keeper from a tight angle.
Overall, it was a solid performance from Lamela and Spurs, who ensured they progressed to the next round of the competition in style with a great 4-1 win at home to an underwhelming Monaco side. The potential opponents for Spurs in Monday’s draw for the Last 32 are: Augsburg, Borussia Dortmund, Fenerbache, Fiorentina, Galatasaray, Marseille, Midtjylland, Saint-Etienne, Sevilla, Shaktar Donetsk, FC Sion, Sparta Prague, Sporting CP, Valencia and Villarreal.
Tottenham dropped points for the second game in a row, as they were held to 1-1 draw with West Bromwich Albion at the Hawthorns. In incredibly windy conditions, Spurs were unable to impose themselves upon the game, producing one of their worst performances of the season so far. In the end, Mauricio Pochettino’s side will be relieved to be walking away from the West Midlands with a point, as West Brom’s second half performance made them look the most likely of the sides to take the three points. Spurs do however extend their unbeaten run to 14 games, but will undoubtedly be disappointed at not having picked up the three points on the day.
The game started off at a slow pace, with neither side troubling one another. The first real chance of the game fell to West Brom’s Venezuelan striker Salomon Rondon who was unable to convert after outmuscling Jan Vertonghen.
The opening goal came after 15 minutes from Tottenham – and what a goal it was. A pinpoint pass from Toby Alderweireld from inside his own half picked out the run of Dele Alli who finished it on the volley, sticking the ball through the legs – as always – of Boaz Myhill to give Spurs the lead.
From that point on Spurs struggled, with West Brom looking the better of the two sides as the half drew to a close. In the 39th minute the hosts got the goal they deserved, a well worked passage of passing was rounded off by a powerful header from James McClean, completely knocking the stuffing out of Spurs.
After the restart, both sides looked lively and managed to continuously counter attack one another, but in the end neither side could find the break through. In the final 10 minutes, Tottenham were having to defend a tirade of attacks from Tony Pulis’ side and the game finished with Spurs desperately holding onto a difficult point.
Next up for Tottenham is a visit from Monaco in the Europa League. After already sealing qualification out of the group stages, Spurs will now be hoping to get back to winning ways as they look to top Group J before hosting Newcastle on Sunday afternoon.