Spurs returned to winning ways at the weekend after a 2-1 victory over Brighton at the Amex. The result marked a much-improved display for Spurs and a return to the goals for Harry Kane.
Spurs started the better side and went close through Toby Alderweireld’s deflected header from Kieran Trippier’s corner. His effort was well saved by Brighton goalkeeper Mathew Ryan.
Heung-min Son also went close with a shot from outside the area as Spurs looked to end their recent bad run of form.
Harry Kane Back Amongst the Goals
Five minutes before halftime Harry Kane had the perfect chance to halt his mini goal drought. It came after Trippier’s free kick was handled by Brighton target man Glenn Murray and a penalty was awarded.
We picked Murrary out in our pre-match preview as a potential threat for Brighton yet it was Spurs that profited from him.
Like he did with his spot-kicks at the World Cup, Kane expertly converted the penalty. His effort could not be more in the corner if he tried and put Spurs into a well deserved lead at halftime.
The penalty also put him 5th on the all-time highest goalscorers list for Spurs, level with Jermain Defoe on 143 goals.
— B/R Football (@brfootball) September 22, 2018
Shortly into the second half, Christian Eriksen had a shot from the edge of the area which was very close to going in the top corner. That effort aside, it was a quiet evening for the Danish international.
By then Spurs should have been out of sight yet their one goal lead meant Brighton were right in the match.
The first real key chance for the Seagulls came after 65 minutes through Anthony Knockaert. Beram Kayal put through the tricky winger who exploited Spurs’ high defensive line for the first time in the match.
After rounding Toby Alderweireld, the Frenchman had all the goal to aim at but his strike could not get past Paulo Gazzaniga.
Spurs’ third choice keeper started only his second Premier League game for the club after Michel Vorm picked up an injury in training the day before the match. His performance may mean that he remains in the side ahead of Vorm when the Dutch keeper returns to full fitness.
Erik Lamela Continues Fine Form
Spurs’ dominance of the encounter got rewarded with a second goal after a brilliant team move. Substitute Erik Lamela started and finished the attack. The wide midfielder picked up the ball inside the Brighton half and drove at their defence before passing to Lucas Moura. Moura then continued Lamela’s excellent work by feeding Danny Rose down the left hand side whose first time cross went straight back to Lamela.
He still had a lot to do with the fizzed in pass from Rose but he expertly guided the ball into the corner to put Spurs 2-0 up. Lamela’s effort and endeavour to get on the end of the cross typified his display at the Amex.
The only remaining thing needed to cap off a much improved showing for Spurs was a clean sheet but that was not to be.
After Spurs had a chance to get a third, Brighton broke with a minute of stoppage time to go. Knockaert drifted into the area and fired a shot past Gazzaniga to give his team hope. It turned out to be a consolation though as Spurs ended up victors.
Mauricio Pochettino looked relieved after the final whistle. It was not a vintage performance from Spurs but it was a well-deserved and important victory after their recent run of form. The victory puts Spurs up into 5th position in the Premier League as they head into a hectic run of fixtures.
Man of the Match
Our man of the match pick is Erik Lamela as his cameo off the bench was the difference in the tie. His goal showed a composed side to the player that has undoubted technical ability. If Pochettino chooses to continue with a 4-2-3-1 for the forseeable it will be interesting to see which one of Son, Moura and Lamela misses out given the form of the latter two this season.
The Belgian centre half pairing of Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen were also impressive and Danny Rose played well at left back.
Spurs v Brighton Attendance
American Express Community Stadium: 30,531
Spurs v Brighton Lineups
Spurs (4-2-3-1): Gazzaniga, Trippier, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Rose, Dier, Dembele, Son (Lamela 68′), Eriksen, Lucas (78′), Kane
Brighton (4-1-4-1): Ryan, Montoya, Duffy, Dunk, Bong, Knockaert, Propper, Stephens (Kayal 21′), Bissouma (Locadia 79′), March (Jahanbakhsh 73′), Murray
What the Managers said
“The start pleased me the most. We took the game in a very good way, the attitude was great, fantastic. The players wanted to show ‘we are here and we’re going to fight for my team, for my fans, for everyone at the Club and that’s what we wanted. We need to translate that into every game we play.
I expected the reaction. We are together. We feel the love between each other and like in all families. Sometimes we fight, sometimes we’re disappointed, sometimes we’re upset and all those periods that happen. But the love is there and of course, the relationship is fantastic.
“We have to keep going because we have the quality to win a lot of games.” (Spurs Official Wesbite)
“We were up against a very good team, a very expansive team, and with the formation we play sometimes it’s difficult to press them in the areas you would like.
They can move the ball very well and what’s important is that you stay in the game. Without the penalty, if we went in at half-time at 0-0, I think it gives us a real good opportunity to get something from the game, if we were able to press higher.
I think it was a penalty but I think it was a soft award of the free-kick. Gaetan does get a touch on the ball. And we should have had a penalty not just because Dier went down with Lewis Dunk but because he’s got hold of his shirt. Sometimes they go your way, sometimes they don’t.” (BBC Sport)
What the Players Said
“It’s a massive win, massive for momentum, for belief. Our energy was great. We pressed hard, everyone worked hard around the pitch and got what we deserved.
Everyone battled, everyone pressed – and that’s when we’re at our best. That’s when we start to find gaps because we wear teams down and that’s what happened. Especially in the second half, we could have scored three or four more and finished it off but we didn’t and had to fight right until the end. Sometimes that makes it feel that much sweeter.” (Spurs official website)
Spurs all-time Top Goalscorers list
- Jimmy Greaves – 266
- Bobby Smith – 208
- Martin Chivers – 174
- Cliff Jones – 159
- Harry Kane – 143
As of 22nd September 2018
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