Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Tottenham Hotspur – White Hart Lane

25th August 2013

Spurs 1-0 Swansea

There is a little known arithmetic formula which states:

(4-5-1) + (4-5-1) = 0

It does not always hold true, but for much of this match at White Hart Lane, it certainly did.  On the face of things, this encounter between two sides known for their bright attacking styles, with both having enjoyed European five-goal romps during the week, should have been one to savour.  Unfortunately the aforementioned mathematics came into play, and the two sets of talented performers pretty much cancelled each other out.

With 10 bods fighting for space in the midfield, it soon became apparent that sideways passing was going to be the order of the day.  And with each manager choosing to play just one up front (Soldado for the hosts and Michu for the visitors), what invariably happened was that as soon as the either side did decide to venture a forward pass, possession was invariably conceded to the opposition.  Who would then repeat the process.

It was perhaps not surprising, therefore, that the closest we came to a goal during the first period occurred when Swansea defender Ashley Williams thumped a cross against his own crossbar.

Proceedings opened up a touch after the break, but it took a penalty award to settle the match, when referee Andre Marriner did that annoying “making up for an earlier error” thing we all know refs do, although they will never admit to it. 

For after calling a Spurs free kick “Inside-or-outside-the-box” decision incorrectly in the first half, he atoned by awarding a decidedly softish looking penalty when Andros Townsend tumbled over Jonjo Shelvey's outstretched leg.

Roberto SOLDADO, as he had done the previous week at Crystal Palace, did the needful before wheeling off to celebrate as if he had just thumped in a thirty-five screamer in open play.

This setback really should have prompted Swan’s manager Michael Laudrup to shove on an additional forward, which he did, but, rather bafflingly chose to retain his 4-5-1 formation by dropping Michu back into midfield.  And for this reason alone, I was pleased to see Swans leave the Lane empty handed.  

Fortune seldom favours the cautious.

White Hart Lane - as the sign says: The South Stand

.................and the East.

White Hart Lane's bronze cockerell

The big screen at White Hart Lane - the image was as grainy as my pic suggests

Spurs just before kick-off...........

..............and a few Swans.

Tottenham's French 'keeper Hugo Lloris

Free-kick clears the wall but also the crossbar

Michael Dawson kept Michu quiet for much of the match

The best seats in the house?

Glen Hoddle dropped in for a chat at the break.

The West Stand at White Hart Lane, must be one of the
few remaining at a Premiership ground with pillars 

Ashley Williams & Roberto Soldado

Roberto Soldado

Spurs' Andros Townsend takes on Ben Davies, 
one of the few Welshmen in the Swanseas squad.

Spurs v Swansea - White Hart Lane - August 2013

Spurs v Swansea - White Hart Lane - August 2013

Soldado's penalty - pic 1

Soldado's penalty - pic 2

Soldado's penalty - pic 3

Spurs v Swansea - White Hart Lane - August 2013

Senor Soldado

Gylfi Sigurdsson feels the benefit of the visitors' man-marking

Jermain Defore and Michu at time-up

Spurs v Swansea - White Hart Lane - August 2013

Panorama of White Hart Lane

Panorama of White Hart Lane

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