Spurs looked to be really Spursing up their chance of a League Cup final when Christen Eriksen did what Christen Eriksen does and put pay to Sheffield United’s Wembley dreams.
All hail the hair because Spurs are on their way to Wembley!
After a semi-final first leg in which Sheffield United didn’t have a shot on target, Spurs spent 77 minutes of the second leg cruising to the League Cup final, until two minutes of pure Spurs put it all in jeopardy, in a tale of two substitutes.
The first half generally saw Spurs control things after an initial scare when Campbell-Ryce’s cross, after he had evaded Davies, was fumbled by Vorm, ah yes that brought out the told you sos about not playing Lloris. The eventual shot being blocked by Walker on the line.
After that it was mainly Stambouli, Mason and Dembele running things. A very comfortable middle of the park – hopefully one that Bentaleb will stay away from for a while. No coincidence that Dembele looks like the Dembele of old having been moved forward into the role that he played at Fulham. Also no coincidence that Dier and Vertonghen were for large parts untroubled as they had actual cover in front of them – not the aforementioned watcher of players that run past him.
But with all that possession nothing was being added to the score sheet. Kane as trying but was also failing. Shots straight at the goalkeeper, following moments when he dithered and let the defenders get back to him. What with the odd offside, it was a bit Defoeish. Lamela was getting the usual online abuse but he was the one playing Kane in. Some use the lack of assists from Lamela to have a go – usually after dismissing stats – well it’s not his fault others don’t score from his balls.
Cruise control was really hit just on the half hour. Just after a bit of Eriksen magic. Stambouli’s charge forward was stopped illegally and the ref blew for the foul. United lined up with a small three man wall with a bit of a gap. Lamela scooped away some of the ref’s spray then ran over the ball, leaving Eriksen to give the ‘keeper the impression he was going to the near post, ‘keeper bit, took a couple of paces to his left as the ball curled to his right and curled in off the far post, just under the bar, as the ‘keeper stood and watched. He wouldn’t have got it anyway.
Glorious. Two nil up and cruising. Which they did for the rest of the half. After all they’ve got to score three now and well they’ve had one shot on target in over two hours.
Second half was slightly different. The United we were told would turn up did. Well they had to do something or they were heading out in a very tame manner. But it should maybe have been Spurs who put the game out of sight. A lovely through ball by Lamela to the onrushing Mason. An excellent tackle stopped the Spurs’ player having a shot.
Spurs were more on the back foot, that old drop off we’ve got it won mentality seemed to kick in. Things weren’t helped when Dembele was substituted. The Belgian had been running things, occupying two, three, four opposition players. The other substitution that turned things around was Clough introducing Che Zach Everton Fred Adams.
Walker hadn’t had the best of nights – when does he? – bar that earlier clearance, this kid made it worse. Though it started on Spurs’ left as a ball played across the box from deepish should have been cut out somewhere along the line but wasn’t. Walker had come inside to help no one leaving Adams all on his Todd to knock in the equaliser on the night. Which walker greeted with having a go at others.
Two minutes later and it was all so predictable, again from the left Vertonghen is left on his backside the cross finds Adams again and his shot is deflected in off Dier as Walker ponces out of making any sort of block as he spins around oblivious to everything around him.
It was now going to extra-time wasn’t it, well that’s if United didn’t go an win it in the last 10 minutes. Just what they needed another 30 minutes and well with United on the up and Spurs sinking fast, as another home shot went over the bar, there was only one winner.
Until with two minutes of normal time to go Harry Kane actually passed the ball to a Spurs’ player, a lovely through ball to Eriksen, who waited and waited until the right moment before shooting back across the ‘keeper into the far corner and put Spurs into the League Cup final. Eriksen Time!
Wemberlee, Wemberlee We’re the famous Tottenham Hotspur And we’re going to Wemberlee.
Just time for a United player to go through Vorm on the floor. Wonder if those that were so desperate for Lloris to start were so adamant now.
Anyway it doesn’t matter, it’s Wembley, it’s a cup final, it’s a possible trophy, it’s the Cheatski scum. A repeat of 2008, Junade’s finest moment. Berbatov’s coolness, Woodgate’s face and Teemu Tainio winding up Drogba.