SATURDAY 17TH SEPTEMBER, 2022
TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 6(2) LEICESTER CITY 2(2)
Son, 73, 84, 86
Tielemans (pen), 6
Referee:- Simon Hooper
Assistants: Adrian Holmes, Mark Scholes
Fourth official:- Jarred Gillett
VAR:- Andre Marriner
Assistant VAR:- Eddie Smart
Spurs (3-4-3):- Lloris (Capt.); Sanchez (sub Romero,59), Dier, Lenglet; Perisic (sub Emerson Royal, 55), Hojbjerg, Bentancur; Kulusevski (sub Bissouma, 70), Kane, Richarlison (sub Son, 59)
Subs not used:- Forster; Tanganga; Doherty, Skipp, Gil
Booked:- Perisic (Entering field of play, having been substituted)
Leicester (4-1-4-1):- Ward; Castagne, Evans (Capt.), Faes, Justin; Ndidi (sub Soumare, 85); Maddison, Tielemans, Dewsbury-Hall (sub Iheanacho, 74), Barnes; Daka (sub Vardy, 74)
Subs not used:- Iversen; Amartey, Thomas; Albrighton, Praet; Perez
Booked:- Ndidi (foul on Hojbjerg), Daka (Handball)
"Sonsational" hat-trick completes another goal-fest!
Heung-min Son, dropped for the first time this season having failed to score in the first 8 games, gave the best possible answer to his critics with a sensational hat-trick. The first two were Son goals of the finest vintage, scored with his right and left feet respectively in opposite corners of Danny Ward’s net. The third was initially flagged offside but allowed following VAR’s review. It was Son’s first hat-trick since a 4-0 win at Villa Park in April and his fourth club hat-trick in all. This fixture has a habit of offering many goals and after four first half goals were matched in the second, this was no exception. The game was one of an open nature, but at half-time Leicester were level following a re-taken penalty and an excellent goal by James Maddison.
Brendan Rodgers’ side remains rooted at the bottom of the table and has conceded 22 goals already. Today’s headlines refer to pressure on the much-admired coach’s job. As for Spurs, they march on, still unbeaten in the league and level on points with leaders Manchester City before today’s Arsenal game at Brentford. We are in a healthy position going into the international break.
This game was the first opportunity for the club and its attending fans to pay tribute to her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and this was done by a minute’s silence (not quite impeccably observed), a presentation of wreaths at the side of the pitch by Ledley King and Emile Heskey and a rendition of “God Save The King”. There was also a one-minute applause after 70 minutes, marking the years of Her Majesty’s historic reign.
Following Tuesday’s Champions League defeat in Lisbon, Antonio Conte made five changes with Sanchez in for Romero, Lenglet replacing Davies, Perisic replacing Emerson, Sessegnon at left-wing-back, and Kulusevski starting instead of Son. It was interesting to see Perisic at right wing-back when we had two right wing-backs on the bench and another (Spence) not making the squad of 20.
Leicester kicked off and played towards the south stand on a sunny, but cooler day than of late. Leicester were awarded a penalty without hesitation by referee Simon Hooper when Sanchez fouled Justin as he entered the Spurs box from the left. Ratified by VAR, Tielemans stepped up and Hugo Lloris made a sensational save diving to his right, but the kick was re-taken as Hugo had moved too early, and was off his line. Tielemans made no mistake second time around, hitting the net inside Hugo’s right post.
Spurs soon responded after a short corner between Kulusevski and Perisic on the right. Kulusevski crossed deep from the right and Harry Kane headed home from the back post. Perisic subsequently had a shot blocked after receiving a good pass from Richarlison. Lloris picked out a cross by Tielemans and hit a long ball to Kulusevski, who did well, passing inside to Hojbjerg who hit a shot well over the target.
Richarlison skilfully won a corner versus Leicester’s Castagne playing at right back. This was taken from the left by Perisic and headed into the net across the keeper by Eric Dier for whom this was a second goal of the season.
Spurs had to defend strongly soon after though, when Perisic lost the ball in his half and Maddison and Tielemans threatened. Spurs had the ball in the net again after a corner won by Kulusevski and taken by Perisic. A Sanchez header hit the net, but the referee quickly awarded a foul against the keeper. At the other end Daka took advantage of a rebound, but Hugo made the save.
Lenglet hit a good pass to Sessegnon, who won a corner. Subsequently after a good pass by Dier, Sessegnon worked the ball to Richarlison who had a shot blocked on the edge of the Leicester area. After a loose ball by Bentancur, Dewsbury-Hall hit a shot, but this was well over the target. Leicester equalised with a well-taken goal. Castagne got the better of Sessegnon and crossed from the right to Maddison who scored with a well-struck right foot shot hit first time to the right of Lloris.
Spurs had a free kick after a foul by Ndidi on Richarlison. Perisic took the kick, which was met by a diving header by Sanchez, but tipped onto his bar by Ward. Lloris had to save from Maddison in added time. The game had been very open but promised and delivered more goals in the second half.
Spurs were out early and kicked off. Sessegnon switched sides with Perisic. Bentancur picked up the ball inside the Leicester half after getting the better of Ndidi. He carried the ball goalward before beating Ward inside his left post with an excellent low right-footed shot. It was his first club goal.
After a ball into the middle by Perisic, Hojbjerg managed to tee up Kulusevski, but he fired over. Spurs appealed for a handball, unsuccessfully, before, after another Perisic corner, Dier’s header was held by the keeper. Perisic was now replaced by Emerson allowing Sessegnon back to the left side. Conte was not going to be hesitant with substitutions today!
Richarlison won the ball and passed to Kane who fed it to Kulusevski towards the right of the area. His shot with his weak foot was under-strength. Hugo made a great save, diving to his right to push away a header by Daka after Maddison’s cross. Now it was time for Son to replace Richarlison and for Romero to take over from Davinson Sanchez.
There was half an hour left, but “Sonny”’s hat-trick would be scored inside 13 minutes and 21 seconds. Hugo first had to collect a header by Leicester defender Wout Faes, who had been bought with some of the money paid by Chelsea for Fofana. Hugo also claimed the ball from Barnes after more Leicester pressure.
Kulusevski was replaced by Bissouma. Son’s first goal came after a quick move forward and a pass by Bentancur. The goal was brilliantly taken, hit with the right foot inside Ward’s top left corner.
Rodgers made a couple of changes with Vardy replacing Daka and Iheanacho taking over from Dewsbury-Hall. Ndidi hit a shot from outside the area which was off target. Kane had a shot blocked which fell to Bentancur, but he too was blocked. Sessegnon was closed down on the left. Kane fed a ball to Son who crossed from the right, but Romero’s shot was woefully off target. There had been an offside too. Kane had a shot blocked which won a corner, after he took a pass from Hojbjerg.
Son’s second goal was another of brilliant standard! Kane had passed to his right before Son moved to his left and this time hit the net with a left foot curler inside the keeper’s right post. Son had another chance from a pass by Bentancur, but this one was not hit properly. Then, after taking a pass from Hojbjerg Son hit the net with a shot where Ward did get a touch. That offside flag was raised but rescinded by VAR, so “Sonny” and the crowd got to celebrate his hat-trick twice!
In added time, Lloris made saves from Tielemans and Maddison, the second of which did necessitate another dive. Kaspar Schmeichel conceded plenty of goals against Spurs in his time. He’s gone, but Ward did not make a good start in his personal contest against Spurs today!
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