Two steps back ended up being a step


Burnley at home, after two wins in the week, was meant to be a banana skin for Spurs, but it turned out after a game of two halves and three goals to be one more hurdle overcome.

Thankfully Burnley came to The Lane to play football and not flat back ten it. It makes for a far more enjoyable afternoon, even if Spurs were doing their usual hanging on at the end.

When teams play it allows Spurs to play, when they come just to defend it cramps Spurs up and normally sees them struggle. You wonder what Burnley were thinking.

So it was an open game with the good and the bad of Spurs on show. Usual flashes of brilliance, before cheaply giving the ball away and allowing the visitors the free reign of the middle of the park. We’ll come to that a little later.

The first goal came from a smart bit of thinking from Eriksen. Some might have mentioned Kane’s name in that sentence, I know Kane and smart in the same sentence end of days people. But after Burnley conceded a free-kick from a handball Kane took the kick quickly, that was the smart bit, but he played it in the direction of the offside Eriksen, who luckily was smart enough to stand there and not make for or touch the ball, so not interfering and therefore not offside. Chadli ran on and collected the ball getting to the byline and chipping it onto Kane’s head, who had made a smart run to follow up his set piece, to nod in.

He may be a big dumb galoot but he’s scoring.

Then the usual complacency happened Lamela was involved in possession being lost, though it was an aimlessly stupid ball played out by Walker, Burnley were allowed the freedom to have a shot at Hugo’s goal. Lloris had no chance it was a cracker of a finish. But no one in the middle did a thing to stop him or the ball getting to him.

Lamela could have made up for his mistake shortly after but Kane fluffed a pretty much open goal from inches out, after he air-kicked Lamela’s excellent cross from the right byline. Wondered at the time what sort of abuse Soldado would have got for a kiss like that.

It wasn’t long though before Lamela did make amends. Curling a cracker of a goal with his left after cutting in, it was almost Townsendesque, well it would have been if it had hit row Z and not the back of the net. His first in the league, hopefully the first of a few tat’ll shut some up.

The game changed just before the break when Mason went down injured in the Burnley box. He had to be taken off and the boss chose Stambouli to replace him.

It meant for the second half that Spurs really weren’t the same, there was no go forward from the middle of the park. Again the main problem was Bentaleb. As he didn’t provide any defensive cover, one attempted tackle all game which failed, he had to provide the forward momentum, he didn’t. None was there and it got worse and worse the more and more he passed it sideways and back killing any break and all momentum. African Cup of Nations can’t come quick enough.

It was screaming out for Poch to make a move, but he didn’t. The longer and longer it went on without any changes being made the worse it got. Then with under 10 minutes to go finally some action but it was Kane coming off for Soldado, when it was screaming out for the likes of Dembele to replace Bentaleb.

Rose for Eriksen as time ran out just compounded the head scratching. Just don’t get Pochettino’s use of substitutes.

So in the end it was left to Hugo to save the day with one final save from a free-kick. It was only Burnley but it as another win, the third of the week, so if that’s three steps forward how many steps back will the next game bring?

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