Consent Preferences Spurs Odyssey Match Report - Spurs v Hull City, 16.05.15
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Spurs v Hull, 16.05.15

(3 pm)

Spurs scorers:-
Chadli, 54
Rose, 61

Attendance:- 35,857

Referee:- Anthony Taylor
Assistants:- G. Beswick & D. Bryan
Fourth official:- G. Scott

Spurs (4-2-3-1):- Lloris (Capt.); Dier, Fazio, Vertonghen, Rose; Mason (sub Stambouli, 79), Bemtaleb; Lamela, Eriksen (sub Dembele, 58), Chadli; Kane (sub Soldado, 90)

Subs not used:- Vorm; Yedlin; Paulinho, Townsend

Booked:- Mason (foul on N'Doye), Bentaleb (foul on Brady), Rose (foul on Elmohamady)

Hull (4-4-2):- Harper; Chester, Dawson (Capt.), McShane, Brady; Elmohamady, Huddlestone (sub Robertson, 71), Meyler, Quinn; N'Doye, Jelavic (sub Hernandez, 62)

Subs not used- McGregor; Rosenior, Bruce; Sagbo, Aluko

Booked:- Meyler (foul on Lamela)

Different fates await Spurs and Hull

Different fates await the protagonists in this Barclays Premier League match, following a 2-0 win for the home side. Europe beckons for Spurs, who held onto sixth place, despite Southampton's mauling of Tim Sherwood's Aston Villa by six goals to one. Southampton travel to Man City next week, whilst Spurs are at Goodison Park. Mathematically, we could still fail to qualify, but the odds are in our favour.

As for Hull, they went into this game needing to win either today or at home next week against Manchester United to have any chance of survival. Now they have to beat United, and either Newcastle or Sunderland fail in their remaining games (Sunderland only need one point to guarantee survival), for Hull to have a chance of survival. The Championship surely beckons.

Bruce was hampered today by the absence of ex-Spur Jake Livermore, who has been suspended by his club following a positive drugs test for cocaine, after Hull's win at Crystal Palace last month.

There were however two other former Spurs players in the Hull side. One was their skipper, and our former captain, Michael Dawson, and the other was midfielder Tom Huddlestone. Both were accorded very positive welcomes by the home fans. You'd expect "Daws" to get a great reception, but Huddlestone too was very warmly applauded when he was substituted in the second half.

As for the game, it was really quite under-whelming, won by Spurs with two genuine moments of class in the second half. Our first goal, after 64 minutes was officially the first shot on target.

Hull brought plenty of fans, most of whom were wearing specially issued scarves,which meant they resembled the nickname ("Tigers") of their club.

Quite what Danny Rose's intention was with his hair, I do not know. Apparently, he meant it to be coloured purple, but it turned out red. He needs a new barber. The colour was a little difficult to make out in the bright sunshine, and I thought the colour was a burnt orange, and that perhaps he was in sympathy for his former Spurs Academy team-mate. Rose was the only change to Pochettino's line-up, with Chiriches suspended and Vertonghen reverting to his normal centre-back position

Hull shaped up with a mind to take attacking opportunities, playing what I interpreted as a midfield diamond, with Huddlestone at the back and Meyler supporting both N'Doye and Jelavic.

It was a while before we saw any noteworthy action. A Lamela ball for Harry Kane showed promise, and Kane won a corner, but nothing came of it. Some slick midfield passing gave Lamela a shooting opportunity, but it was with his right foot. He won another corner, from which Eric Dier headed just wide.

The first of two or three errors by Fazio gave Hull hope. The Argentine defender tried to clear a long ball, but instead it ran to N'Doye, whose cross from deep on the right reached Jelavic, who headed wide. Meyler was allowed to carry the ball from deep, feeding the ball to Elmohamady, who crossed from the right. Jelavic collected the ball at the back post, and hit the corner stanchion with his shot, but an offside flag had already been raised, perhaps against the advancing Meyler.

Chadli switched the ball to Kane after 20 minutes, and Harry tried a low cross/shot, which passed Steve Harper's right post.

There could have been panic at the back for Spurs as Lloris slipped when Jelavic was moving forward, but Eric Dier intercepted and cleared. Spurs countered through Eriksen and Kane, but an attempted pass by Bentaleb failed.

Danny Rose did well at the back against Elmohamady after another Fazio slip. This led to another Spurs counter-attack with Eriksen and Bentaleb featuring, before Kane's ball from the left passed across the goal-mouth.

Former Everton striker Nikica Jelavic was active and tried an overhead shot from a cross from the right, but the effort did not bother Lloris. At the other end, with Mason getting forward to offer himself to the attack, Kane fed him a pass, which Mason turned inside to Lamela, who fired wide.

Mason then got a booking before half-time, and Bentaleb collected one in the second half. These two have perhaps had too many bookings for comfort over the course of the season, but it does of course confirm their combative nature.

Hull won a couple of corners at the start of the second half, without threatening to score. The "Tigers" took a clever free kick sending the ball to Jelavic on the left of the Spurs area, but he was offside.

Spurs took the lead in the 54th minute with a clever disguised pass by Lamela through the Hull defence. Chadli made a run around their back and managed to collect the ball and round Harper before putting the ball in the net.

Harry Kane had a right foot effort go wide after Dier's centre, before Eriksen was replaced by Dembele. Spurs' one goal lead became a comfortable two after Chadli's pass to Mason, who cleverly chipped the ball over the defence, where Danny Rose had advanced to volley into the roof of the net. I forgive him for the red hair!

Hull replaced Jelavic with Hernandez, and naturally went all-out to gain something from the game. There was a good old fashioned goal-mouth scramble after 69 minutes, when Hernandez had two or three efforts either blocked or saved before N'Doye fired wide. In truth, that was as close as Hull got to scoring. Lloris did have to make a save from Quinn after Robertson's cross.

Kane seemed to injure himself in his attempt on goal after Bentaleb's pass. The shot was saved, and Harry carried on before he was replaced by Soldado in the closing stages. Kane got great applause from the crowd as he left the pitch.

For only the second time I can remember in the last 20 years, I did not stay in the ground for the end of season "lap of honour". My perception was that most of the crowd was under-whelmed and also left on time. Certainly the pictures I have seen suggest the stands were almost empty when Harry Kane was pictured with club members who had been selected to present him with his player of the season awards. I suspect Kane won the members' player of the season and young player votes. Harry has had a great season, but it looks like he's been pipped by Hugo Lloris for the Spurs Odyssey vote.

The season is not quite over yet of course, and I shall be at Goodison Park next week for my final report of the season.

P.S - The report was written on my journey home, after which I discovered that Cystal Palace had well and truly spoilt Steven Gerrard's leaving party, which means that Spurs could still finish fifth. If Liverpool fail to beat Stoke, and Spurs manage to beat Everton, we would overtake the "Reds".

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