I’m sure some football happened

Burnley 1 - 1 Tottenham Hotspur - FA Cup, 3rd round - January 5th, 2015


Spurs have had two wins and two draws over the festive period and not a single post on here about any of them, till now.

Things started off on Boxing Day with a lucky 2-1 win away at Leicester. Kane’s brilliant opener was far, far too early. Less than a minute, what was he thinking? It really looked like a 90 plus minute hang on act.

It was no surprise when the hosts equalised, though maybe one that it was Ulloa. Before it had looked as if even playing against Spurs couldn’t lift out of his goalscoring rut. One attempt ending in him falling over from an air shot another battering off the crossbar from a header.

When the goal did come it was also no surprise that both Rose and Bentaleb were the Spurs’ guilty parties. The former being out of position, as per, the latter being run by as if he wasn’t there, as per.

The next unsurprising thing was Eriksen getting on the score-sheet with the winner, though bizarrely this didn’t happen in the dying seconds.

Then two days later the Louis van Gaal media lovefest rolled into town as ManUre came to White Hart Lane. Look at what you could have won. Well, he’s certainly getting that look of Fergie about him, what with the colour of his oddly shaped nose.

A game of two halves as the old cliché goes. Visitors had their chances in the first half, unfortunately for them, fortunately for Spurs they came up against a world class ‘keeper – not someone who just stops shots straight at them. Lloris again proving, as he did at Leicester, that he’s a class above anyone else in the league. When he wasn’t there Chriches cleared one effort off the line, some questioned his place in the line up but I shudder to think where Walker would have been at that moment.

After the break it all changed around, Pochettino obviously does decent half time talks. Before itw as all Carrick and Mata running things, now it was Spurs. Where as the visitors couldn’t get past Lloris, Spurs spurned their chances, only themselves to blame. As van Gaal set about using his substitutions to bring defenders on.

The the New Year Day biggie. Chelski at home. Now even in the most drunken Hogmany/New Year state did anyone really see that one coming.

Well they probably saw the opener coming. A break from a Spurs’ corner, one dodgy bit of officiating later after Hazard had run rings around the defensively clueless Rose and Costa scores.

From there though things escalated in a manner most probably didn’t imagine even in their wildest dreams.

All starting with the first of Harry Kane’s brilliant goals. A strong bit of running across the park had the look of a Townsend run up until he cut the ball back across is body and slotted it in the corner. It was just the lift the team needed and from that point they were flying.

Yes before Kane had the unfortunate stench of being a Dimwood player who looked to be getting a game not on talent. A bit of a big dumb lumper but his play has improved, especially with the confidence he has now. Improved far more than anyone really should have expected. Highlighted a little later.

It didn’t take long for a second to come, even less for the third. The former after some nice build up by Eriksen and then Chadli’s shot spinning off the post before the charging Rose knocked it in. Did it make up for his inept defending? The third came after Kane was quick to pounce on the ball in the area, quicker than Cahill who tripped hi in the process. Of all the players out there Townsend wouldn’t have been many’s first choice as penalty taker but he scored it. Joining Rose in that does a goal negate the rest of the useless display.

Only Spurs though can go in at half time 3-1 up and be taking about getting a draw at best, at worst being completely overturned.

When Kane made it 4 with his second it was delirium. Not just the score but the actual goal. A lovely turn on Matic in which he took the ball with such a brilliant touch and then shot through Terry’s legs. Perfect. Hard to imagine Kane would have topped his first goal but this did.

When Hazard closed the lead shortly after it really was a case of “here we go”. But the fifth from Chadli surely had to be the killer, surely they couldn’t score three or more in a little over 10 minutes. Yes they got one more and yes it was unfortunately Terry who got it but that shouldn’t take the shine off the scoreline the type of which Mourinho claimed was a hockey score some years ago.

But it wasn’t just the score it was the performance. Chadli, Kane and Eriksen had magnificent games. Eriksen’s almost went unnoticed as he contributed most by occupying the Chelsea players rather than work on the ball. He dragged Matic all round the park opening space for others to exploit. Along with Chadli and Kane’s directness the visitors had no answer.

So three league games in the festive week and 7 points from 9, up to fifth in the league just a couple of points off fourth, with the unbeaten league run at 7 games, just 1 defeat in the last 10. Not too bad.

It was onto the Cup and the game that time forgot. Burnley away on a Monday night with no TV coverage seemingly anywhere. The travelling Spurs’ faithful turned up en masse, the natives didn’t.

So can you really report on a game broadcast on radio, well when it’s morons like Kevin Kilbane co-commentating then no really. As Soldado went off after 67 minutes Kilbane laid into the under-performing foreigner, who offered nothing, while the replacement Townsend was going to be just what Spurs needed. Except of course Townsend offered absolutely nothing and Burnley came into it after Soldado departed.

The game only came alive in the second half with the introduction of Kane and was going Spurs’ way with Chadli’s opener just before the hour.

The first half was dire, almost so dire that you were glad you weren’t watching it. Though that negates the misery of listening to BBC radio broadcast where when any action was taking place it was being ignored by a pair of pundits who were more interested in the Wimbledon versus Liverpool game. Though they couldn’t make up their mind if they wanted a giant killing or for Gerrard to taste one final glory. Either way you only knew something had happened because of the crowd noise, Kilbane and his chum weren’t letting on what actually did happen though.

In the end the unsatisfactory result of a replay required – will anyone show it? – which is still better than being out of the competition as they were just 12 months ago under Dimwood.

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