Wingbacks Danny Rose and Kieran Trippier were vital in making the final score Huddersfield 0-2 Tottenham in our Premier League clash.
Spurs battled a spirited Huddersfield side and overcame them through the use of our wingbacks. Initially overpowered, Danny Rose and Kieran Trippier fought back to earn three vital points. The match ended Huddersfield 0-2 Tottenham at the John Smith’s Stadium.
Battle of the wingbacks
Both Tottenham and Huddersfield went with three centre backs and wingbacks. The Terriers initially charged out of the gate to enforce their style and tempo on the match.
When Huddersfield had the ball they were looking to get it quickly in-behind our high line. When out of possession, the Terriers were closing down and rapidly pressing. Their team sought a mistake or a long ball downfield that they could hoover up and launch another foray forward.
Huddersfield was very aggressive with the positioning of their wingbacks. Erik Durm and Chris Lowe pushed high whenever possible. As a result, Danny Rose and Kieran Trippier were forced backwards. So much so that the Tottenham defence often looked like a back five.
For all of their efforts, Huddersfield struggled to create any clear-cut openings. The Terriers’ closest call was from a Lucas Moura trip on a rampaging Chris Lowe, which looked more outside the box than in. However, referee Craig Pawson waved play on.
Tottenham attack the outside centre backs
Huddersfield had the momentum, yet Tottenham created the better chances. Spurs had a plan to attack the space around the outside centre backs. This primarily concentrated on the space afforded by Terence Kongolo.
The left centre back was being easily dragged around by movement. Kongolo was often dawn from the back line, allowing a runner in-behind.
First up it was Harry Kane who darted off the back of Kongolo to receive a long pass from Toby Alderweireld. Kane stole in for a one-versus-one against goalkeeper Jonas Lossl. The Terriers stopper denied him with a good save as Kane tried to deftly chip him.
Son Heung-Min would be the next in to the space off Kongolo. Son, however, couldn’t find a cross.
The third attack would see Tottenham take the lead. Lucas Moura was the player to run off Kongolo this time.
Moura was forced wide, but his layoff found the trailing Kieran Trippier to deliver a telling cross.
In the middle, Harry Kane had pulled away from the other two centre backs, who were constantly disengaged from their wingbacks.
Kane could get a running start to tower above Christopher Schindler and head home. A goal against the run of play, but not the run of chances.
Rose on the rampage
Kieran Trippier had fought back well in his match up against an attacking Chris Lowe. Danny Rose was doing equally well against Erik Durm.
The pair of Trippier and Rose became more of a force as the match wore on, and Huddersfield had to make changes.
Rose and Trippier initially combined on six minutes. Tottenham tore through the space around left centre back Terence Kongolo. Trippier’s perfect cross picked out Danny Rose arriving in the box. Rose unfortunately headed wide. It would’ve been a very apt goal given the flow of the match, highlighting the space around Kongolo and the wingback battle perfectly.
Kongolo was injured in the build-up to our opener. His substitution forced Huddersfield in to major changes. Florent Hadergjonaj was brought on at right wingback and Rose immediately exposed him.
Hadergjonaj was caught on his heels as Rose played a neat one-two with Son Heung-Min. The passage of play also highlighted the space Huddersfield’s centre backs were leaving between themselves and their wingbacks.
Tottenham had exposed this space on the first goal. Lucas Moura had initially run through the room left between centre back Kongolo and wingback Lowe. At the far post, Harry Kane could pull off in to the space between the other centre back Jorgensen and wingback Durm, to get a running start and tower over Schindler.
As Rose raced past newly introduced wingback Hadergjonaj, he was in acres of space left by Jorgensen being so disconnected and narrow.
Hadergjonaj then compounded his error by grabbing Rose, sending him to the turf. Referee Craig Pawson had no hesitation in pointing to the penalty spot.
Harry Kane dispatched the penalty with consummate ease. Goalkeeper Jonas Lossl was sent the wrong way and the score had quickly become Huddersfield 0-2 Tottenham.
Tottenham counter attacks
Huddersfield responded well to going two goals behind. Their wingbacks were then involved in their best effort of the match. Erik Durm put in an excellent cross that Laurent Depoitre smacked against the underside of the bar.
At half time, with the score at Huddersfield 0-2 Tottenham David Wagner urged his team to be more aggressive in the second half.
Huddersfield tried to flood men forward, but as a result, left huge gaps between the lines. The Terriers midfield got so far forward that they became disconnected from their back line. Tottenham got players in this space and arguably created the better chances again.
Son Heung-Min was the chief beneficiary of this space. Son raced away and found an excellent low pullback that created a glorious chance for Lucas Moura. The Brazilian rode a tackle, but couldn’t quite regain his feet in time to slip the ball past an onrushing Jonas Lossl.
Son then tore through the space again, passing up the option of a well-placed Danny Rose, to fire a shot straight at Lossl.
David Wagner tried to make changes. Huddersfield went to 4-3-3 with the introduction of Isaac Mbenza. His shot from the edge of the box, which was well saved by Paulo Gazzaniga, was as close as the Terriers came.
Time ran out with he final score Huddersfield 0-2 Tottenham and three valuable Premier League points were ours.
Huddersfield 0-2 Tottenham overall
A great game for our wingbacks. Danny Rose and Kieran Trippier both fought off a spirited and aggressive opening from their Huddersfield counterparts. Rose and Trippier were then heavily involved in fashioning the opportunities for Harry Kane to find the net, twice.
After three defeats, three wins on the spin resumes normal service. However, the removal of Jan Vertonghen at half time was a cause for concern with Barcelona on Wednesday.
Final score: Huddersfield 0-2 Tottenham.
MOTM: Danny Rose.
Zaph Mann says
An unusual game – we had less possession than H. I didn’t agree with the commentators that Spurs were ‘under the cosh” It seemed like they could deal with the high balls all day, and indeed they did. Kane looked sharp again… and we benefited from early through balls (vertical pasess as you like to call them)
Dier is a lovely bloke and is important to the team aerially but his recurring habit of gifting possession with a slow or errant pass is of concern, he’s etter in defence than midfield.
Spurs Fanatic - Mark says
I’m of a different thinking and prefer Dier in midfield. He did a decent job standing in for Jan at left centre back – 3 right footed CBs on the field in the second half wasn’t ideal. Not sure why Poch didn’t use Davies at LCB but Dier better aerially against their long throws, of which they were trying many.
I cannot make any comments on this game,as the wife and I,were at a Hockey Tounament,here in NZ.Watching one of our grand daughters.So I only caught glimpses,of the game.Any how our grand daughters team won,their competion.So in all it was a really great week for us all round,with Tottenham winning, and our grand daughters team,beating the big city teams..
Many regards Brian.
Spurs Fanatic - Mark says
Great news Brian, you must be very proud. A trophy in the cabinet for your family, hopefully Spurs can match that achievement this season!
Erik Zen says
Obviously nice to win away, and for HK to get two goals. And especially to win with Lamela (!), Alli (!!) and Eriksen (!!!) out of the side: our three most lethally creative players.
Disappointing to see such rampant profligacy in the second half, when time and time again we steamed forward only to fudge a good position. However I think the players are still getting used to each other again (esp. with Moura in the mix) and getting over their WC hangover, finally.
It’s been much discussed but whatever happened to the HK goals of old, remember the worldies he used to score on a regular basis, rolling midfielders, and firing in from everywhere? Is it because in his early breakout career nobody could quite believe he was any good and therefore didn’t close him down enough? Or has he become a rarified concentrated essence of a footballer who scores a very high percentage of much fewer shots? Like the equivalent of how surgical drone strikes changed warfare? Food for thought.
Barcelona. Would feel better if five or six of our best players weren’t injured. COYS!
Spurs Fanatic - Mark says
We were wasteful, Son especially who is usually a good counter attack player. I thought the game was screaming out for Lamela given all the space through midfield, but maybe Poch is saving him for Barca?
Very good point about Kane. He does get more attention from defences that is for sure. His shots per game are down this season and that has been affected by Moura playing up with him or in his passing lanes. He is also shooting less from outside the box, a category we often lead the premier league as a team in attempts. I think this is also having an affect and i’m not sure whether this is due to opposition closing down or Poch trying to increase shot volume in the box and instructing players not to take efforts from range. As you say, without Dele I think more teams can focus on Kane as we don’t have a genuine second box threat that Dele provides. Opponents don’t have to worry about him and his late runs in to the penalty area, which can often occupy defenders and free up space for Kane.
Despite scoring twice, I actually don’t think Kane is even near getting back in his groove yet – for a lot of the reasons mentioned above. He still seems slightly off the pace to me and his shots aren’t being fired with their usual accuracy. Hopefully these recent goals, even if they are penalties, can help him back in to the old routine.
Job done – an important three points bagged.
Barca game a huge test now with lots of first choice players in the stands.
Just saw a great quote from the gaffer..
“I played against Maradona and Ronaldo and, for your ego, it’s a thing that you are going to tell your kids and grandkids. So enjoy it, stay close and try to play in the opposite half; push Leo to play far from your goal. Because if not, it’s terrible.”
It could be terrible.
But could also be heroic.
Spurs Fanatic - Mark says
Really looking forward to the game tonight, arguably more so than the Madrid match last season as I have a lot more respect for Barca and the way they play. I know we are going to be without key players, but this could be a real confidence boost and help the squad take another important step forward on the road to learning how to win big and important matches should we get the victory.