UEFA EUROPA LEAGUE GROUP J
THURSDAY 22ND OCTOBER, 2015
R.S.C ANDERLECHT 2(1) TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 1(1)
Referee:- Pol van Boekel
Assistants:- Sander van Roekel, Angelo Boonman
Additional assistants:- Richard Liesveld, Martin van Kerkhof
Fourth official:- Jan Vries (All officials from The Netherlands)
Anderlecht (4-2-3-1):- Proto (Capt.); Gillet, Kara, Deschacht, Obradovic; Tielemans, Defour; Ezekiel ( sub Acheampong, 66), Dendoncker, Praet (sub Conte, 92); Okaka (sub Sylla, 88)
Subs not used:- Roef; Nuytink, Heylen; Kawaya
Booked:- Praet (foul on Trippier), Tielemans (foul on Kane)
Spurs (4-2-3-1):- Lloris (Capt.); Trippier, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Davies; Dembele (sub Alli, 65), Dier; Townsend (sub Onomah, 80), Eriksen, Lamela; N'Jie (sub Kane, 59)
Subs not used:- Vorm; Rose, Wimmer; Winks
Booked:- N'Jie (foul on Dendoncker)
Anderlecht win their cup final
Spurs succumbed to an old enemy, and Anderlecht finally managed to beat Spurs at the fourth attempt. We had famously drawn the two legs of the 1984 UEFA Cup Final, when we won on penalties, and the UEFA Cup game in December, 2007 was also drawn 1-1.
Last night in the Constant Vanden Stock stadium, after beating Spurs 2-1, the Anderlecht players did a lap of honour and most of the home fans stayed in the ground to cheer their achievement. As always in Europe, Spurs fans had to hang around but they also had to endure this noisy crowing celebration.
Spurs had taken an early lead through Christian Eriksen's well placed shot to the right of goalkeeper Proto, but it wasn't long before they were pegged back by Gillet's shot.
As anticipated, Spurs fielded a strongish side for a European game. Trippier and Davies took over the full back berths. Eric Dier returned, but was perhaps displaced by the presence of Dembele, who took his normal right-sided position. Townsend started on the right, and N'Jie made his first start of the season, with Harry Kane getting a rest, but replacing him after an hour. Kane was to have at least two good chances to score, but failed again.
Dembele did not have the quality of game he had on Saturday, and he too was taken off with 25 minutes to go, replaced by Dele Alli.
It was Lamela who carried the ball in from the right to tee up Eriksen for his goal, after the ball fell to his feet via a rebound off a defender. Dier did well in the middle after 9 minutes, passing the ball to Eriksen on the left. Eriksen, who was playing to the left of Lamela anyway, passed inside and Lamela's shot was saved in the middle of goal.
The home side equalised after a corner taken from the right by Defour. Gillet, towards the back of the area, was given time to control the ball and beat Lloris with a right foot shot inside his left post, and in front of the despondent travelling fans.
Right winger Ezekiel had already been giving Davies problems, and Anderlecht's top scorer Okaka was a danger to the strongest Spurs central defence all night. Lloris made a brilliant one-handed save from the Italian's powerfully hit drive after 27 minutes.
Vertonghen tried to inspire his team with a forward run and a ball to Townsend, who might have been called offside, but fired wide anyway. Toby Alderweireld tried a long range shot but that also passed wide.
Okaka had another chance after 37 minutes, following a cross from the right, but Lloris was down to hold the right footed shot. After another Defour corner, centre-back Kara headed powerfully towards goal, but this effort was blocked.
Eriksen, Lamela and N'Jie tried to make headway from the left, but Proto was first to the ball. Townsend had a chance after Dembele's pass, but before wide across goal.
After the break, Eriksen fed N'Jie, but he was not quite able to manage a shot on goal. Lloris held another effort by right back Gillet, who appears to be a player of the marauding nature, similar to Everton's Seamus Coleman.
N'Jie, who had taken a booking , apart from being rather ineffective in front of goal, was replaced early by Kane. Kane had a good chance on goal after 68 minutes in a one on one situation, but the goalkeeper saved.
Anderlecht had replaced Ezekiel, who had been playing on the right, with 22 year old Frank Acheampong, who played on the left and gave Trippier a torrid time. Acheampong got to the bye-line after 75 minutes, and his cross was converted by Okaka in front of his ecstatic fans.
With ten minutes to go, Andros Townsend, who tended to show defenders far too much of the ball, was replaced by Onomah. Spurs huffed and puffed, trying to get on terms, and Kane had another excellent opportunity after Alli's through ball, pushing his shot the wrong side of the far post.
Trippier had a long range effort that was always going over the target, and Anderlecht had two late chances blocked, or saved as they comfortably saw out the three minutes of added time
This win opens up Group J. Monaco beat Qarabag 1-0 to go top of the group. The BBC match report refers to us dropping to third in the group but we do have a +1 goal difference compared to Anderlecht's 0. Both have four points and their head to head status may be the telling factor. Spurs will just have to try and win the return match in two weeks' time.
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