BARCLAYS PREMIER LEAGUE
MONDAY 2ND NOVEMBER, 2015
TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 3(2) ASTON VILLA 1(0)
J. Ayew, 79
Attendance:- 34, 882
Referee:- Mike Dean
Assistants:- S. Long & S. Bennett
Fourth official:- G. Scott
Spurs (4-2-3-1):- Lloris (Capt.); Walker, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Rose (sub Davies, 82); Dier, Alli (sub Onomah, 89); Lamela, Dembele (sub Mason, 69), Eriksen; Kane
Subs not used:- Vorm; Trippier, Fazio; Townsend
Aston Villa (4-2-3-1):- Guzan; Hutton, Clark, Lescott, Richardson; Sanchez, Westwood (sub J. Ayew, 38); Bacuna, Grealish (sub Gil, 65), Sinclair; Agbonlahor (Capt) (sub Gestede, 46)
(Armband to Lescott)
Subs not used:- Bunn; Veretout, Crespo, Amavi
Booked:- Ayew (foul on Dier), Richardson (foul on Lamela), Hutton (foul on Mason)
Spurs finish with a flourish.
Spurs did their job against lowly Aston Villa in the end, finishing with a flourish to seal the three points, with a fast moving passing play involving Eriksen, Lamela and Harry Kane in added time. The fact is that Spurs scored their first goal after only three minutes; their second came in first half added time, and that third in added time at the end of the game. This restored Spurs' two goal lead which had looked secure until the home side took their foot off the pedal and allowed the bottom club more hope than they merited.
Remi Garde was announced as the new Villa manager today, but interim manager Kevin MacDonald was in charge of the team tonight,and will be pleased with his work to a degree, as Villa worked hard and successfully closed Spurs down a lot of the time.
Whilst they didn't take up a full away allocation, those Villa fans who did turn up did their club proud, remaining very vocal,at least until Spurs' second goal.
Spurs' starting line-up was unchanged from the team which had won so convincingly at Bournemouth, which meant Ryan Mason started on the bench. One concern was the absence of Clinton N'Jie from the bench, which left us with no supporting striker in any shape or form.
Spurs got off to the best start possible, and it was virtually all Mousa Dembele's own work, as he received the ball from Danny Rose, and literally powered his way into the Villa box, keeping Ciaran Clark at bay, before dispatching the ball low past Brad Guzan. It was only Dembele's fifth league goal for Spurs, and surely the first time he has scored in successive games for us.
Hugo Lloris was called upon to make a good save from Scott Sinclair, who had cut in from the left before firing a shot which Lloris could only parry above his head. Grealish's attempt to follow up was wide.
Eric Dier played a very good through ball down the left channel for Harry Kane, whose shot took a slight deflection, before Guzan pushed the ball over his bar. The corner was taken by Eriksen from the left, with a ball to Danny Rose, whose left foot shot passed just over the bar. Dembele had another effort on goal, but this one passed over the target.
There was a little panic in the Spurs defence, as Hugo Lloris raced out to try and clear a long ball aimed for Sinclair. His attempted clearance simply rebounded off Kyle Walker and reached Danny Rose on the left,who was able to clear.
A nice move down the left featuring Danny Rose (twice), Dembele and Eriksen won us a corner, but that was cleared for a Spurs throw. There was a delay whilst Ashley Westwood received treatment, and ultimately had to be replaced by Jordan Ayew, who soon saw yellow for a foul on Eric Dier.
An Eriksen free kick was defended by Villa, before Eriksen regained the ball and crossed over the goal. In added time, Eriksen fed the ball out to Danny Rose on the left, whose pass inside fell to Dele Alli about 20 yards out. Alli worked room for himself and hit a well placed shot low to Guzan's right to make it 2-0 at just the right time.
Agbonlahor was replaced at half time by Gestede, and it took a while for the Villa bench to get the armband to Lescott, via referee Mike Dean.
Spurs seemed to take their foot off the pedal to a degree, and looked as if they would be happy just to defend their two goal lead.They did forge a good chance through Lamela's cross from the right after 52 minutes, which was headed over by Rose.
Harry Kane was fouled on the hour, but Eriksen's free kick just hit the wall. Mousa Dembele was replaced by Mason after 69 minutes. Another foul on Kane gave Eriksen a good opportunity in a good spot for him, but he fired over from 25 yards.
There was some worry for Spurs as they failed to clear their lines, and Gestede had a shot blocked to win a corner, after 72 minutes. By this time, the Villa fans had regained their voices, as they scented some reward for their team's efforts.
However, a lengthy display of good passing football by Spurs culminated in Erik Lamela getting a shot on target, which was held by Guzan. Hugo Lloris had to make a dive to his left, but Bacuna's shot actually rebounded off the post, with Lloris probably covering.
Villa got the goal they had been threatening when Jordan Ayew was allowed a run across from the left beating Lloris's right hand with a right foot shot.
Danny Rose was replaced by Davies,who was the defender closest to Gestede, who got a header on goal, which passed wide, with Lloris also out to challenge for the ball. Ayew had another shot go close over the bar, and it was all starting to look a bit ominous for Spurs.
Alli was replaced late in the game by Josh Onomah, who displayed plenty of confidence in the few minutes he had on the pitch, playing a direct and attacking midfield role. Lamela had just won a corner in a challenge with Sanchez, but soon after he came on, Onomah took responsibility to take the ball on a run, hitting a shot which was saved by Guzan.
Two minutes into the four minutes of added time, Spurs finished a nice fast move with a fine goal. Eriksen was central and fed the ball out to Lamela on the right. Erik very quickly sent the ball across the area to the feet of Harry Kane, who fired home convincingly with his right foot to seal all three points, and fifth place.
Next up in a busy week will be Anderlecht, before we face the enemy at the other end of The Seven Sisters Road on Sunday.
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