Match Review – Southampton 2-3 Tottenham

Spurs came from behind to earn a 3-2 victory at Southampton on Sunday with goals coming from Emmanuel Adebayor (2) and Hooiveld.

The game took a balanced beginning with both sides taking their fair share of possession. Tottenham looked slightly more energetic in their approach with Adebayor and Eriksen keen to swap the ball about. Ricky Lambert struck an early freekick for the Frenchman, Hugo Lloris to clutch on the dive. Tottenham endured a good spell down the left of the pitch flicking the ball between teammates Adebayor, Sigurdsson and Rose. The best section of Spurs play came not long after. Erik Lamela found a gap in the Southampton backline to scoop the ball through to Spaniard Roberto Soldado, only for the striker to smash a first time ball into the area, for the Saints defence to fire behind for a corner.

However it was the home side that took the lead. Adam Lallana cut inside to fire a weak but strong enough shot across Hugo Lloris into the left of the goal to give the Saints the advantage. It was an open goal there for the taking and the Spurs defence showed their weakness – that of which let 5 in against Liverpool last week.

But it didn’t take long for Tottenham to retaliate. Emmanuel Adebayor received the ball from Lamela centrally and played an awful ball out side to Soldado. The Spaniard then cut the ball back to fire an outstanding cross into the area for Adebayor whom volleyed home to make it 1-1. The half did not entertain much more in the way of chances. Sigurdsson made the most of a weak Walker cross to earn a corner but the referee called an end to proceedings not long after. The sides entered the break level.

The second half started with a brief setback for Sherwood’s side. Mousa Dembélé fell to the floor and looked in quite some pain. Fortunately, the youngster Nabil Bentaleb was on call to make his debut for Tottenham. The exciting Under-21 prospect was looking to carry on his good work for Sherwood, Ferdinand and Ramsey after some great performances this season. It looked as if he was to make the perfect start as he was involved in the goal to take the lead for Tottenham. Bentaleb found Eriksen in the area, the Dane found Rose through a gap and the left back cut in a cross, only for Southampton to put it into their own net. Spurs led 2-1.

It didn’t take the hosts much time to get back into the game. Adam Lallana continued a great performance as captain when he powered into the Spurs box. Michael Dawson came to join the forward as did Hugo Lloris. The pair were both tricked however as Lallana cut the ball back for Rickie Lambert to smash home the ball in an empty area. The sides were level at 2-2. The game was providing quite the engaging affair for neutrals.

The goal fest continued not long after. Emmanuel Adebayor looked to improve upon an already successful week as he received the ball from Christian Eriksen in the area, cut inside and tucked home the ball to make it 3-2 to the visitors. His celebration sparked an obscure look from the referee who did not seem to enjoy the African busting some moves. With Tottenham in the lead, they were ruthless enough to go for more! Roberto Soldado lost his man to shoot just wide inside the area – a glorious chance for the Spaniard. He then collected two further misses. The second came on the slide as he couldn’t meet the Nacer Chadli cross, the third; was a side netting effort from a tight angle. It looked as if it wasn’t to be the day for the former Valencia forward to score.

The game then came to close, despite five additional minutes of panic. Spurs were back to winning ways against difficult opposition.

Player Ratings:

Lloris – “Catch the damn thing!”

Walker – “You’re just a defensive Aaron Lennon, defensive Aaron Leeeeeenon!”
Dawson – “These boots are made of concrete. Remain stationery is what they’ll do.”
Chiriches – “Vlad the impaler!”
Rose – “Daddy cool.”

Dembélé/Bentaleb – “Mousa was tame, Bentaleb was on his game!”
Eriksen – “Midfield dynamite.”
Sigurdsson – “Thor was a bit of a bore.”
Lamela – “You’re so close…”

Soldado – “He comes from Sunny Spain, to miss again and again!”
Adebayor – “Guess who’s back, back again.”

MOTM – Adebayor. Top performance that speaks volumes about AVB’s man management.

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