or Spursy as Jose will soon learn.
Spursy… when you’re sitting second in the league, with the best goal difference in the league, with just 8 minutes to go and end up sixth with the same GD you started with.
It ended a draw but at the end you could tell it felt like a different result for both sides. For them it was a victory, for Spurs a defeat. A bad defeat.
I mean, being three up with minutes remaining and it ending a draw is bad enough, to do it against West Ham is even worse, to do it against West ham with David Moyes on the touchline it’s indescribably bad. Yes they’d won their previous two league games and quite convincingly but Moyes was absent. When he was present they’d lost the two matches. This was the first point they’d picked up with the manager on the touchline. Looking miserable.
The question before this game was… are West Ham bad because David Moyes is miserable on the touchline or is David Moyes miserable on the touchline because West Ham are bad?
He was looking miserable after just 45 seconds. What a ball from Kane. If only Kane was on the end of such balls, for Spurs and England. Thankfully a lot of the time Kane plays such a pass Son is on the end of it. The commentators moaning that the defender showed son inside, well yes it is towards the goal but it doesn’t matter with Son, or indeed Kane, which foot they have to shoot with. That’s a thing that makes it so hard for defenders facing either of them. Yes defenders that let Salah or Mahrez come in on their left are stupid. But Son and Kane can score from either side.
Seven minutes later and Moyes was even more miserable as Kane picked the ball up on the edge of the box, nutmegged Rice then fired the ball into the bottom corner of the net, through another player’s legs and past the static keeper.
Just after the quarter hour Moyes misery looked almost complete, as Reguilon stood up a first-time cross right onto Harry’s head.
West Ham had actually started the brighter. Spurs made a couple of errors within that opening 45 seconds but now it looked like game over. Moyes was back looking miserable and West Ham were playing like Moyes was looking miserable. It was now just a case of how many would Spurs get and how many would they have before Jose introduced Gareth Bale.
But they did add to it and at the end of the half Harry was having to block shots in his own box.
They came back into after the break and it left space at their back for Spurs to exploit and it should really have been all over with Kane’s hat-tick but after a flowing move from Son’s pass his left foot curler hit the far upright. Four and it really is game over, even Spurs fans would think that with just over 10 minutes of normal time to go.
By now Bale had made his “second debut” for the club, coming on just after the 70th minute. It was a moment though that Jose completely spoilt by bringing on Winks at the same time. Doing that just encourages the opposition. They now now how soft the middle of midfield is.
A couple of minutes later and they got what looked like at the time their consolation, as Spurs yet again failed to keep a clean-sheet. A free kick from the Spurs left was curled over to the back post where Sanchez missed the ball and Sissoko failed to do anything, for the WH player to head home. Then a couple of minutes later a cross from the Spurs left, with Winks scampering about while not actually doing anything like blocking it, and Sanchez has headed into his own net.
Where were the Dier haters now?
Ah, well, it’s like Jose’s first game in charge. Three up, in control and then conceding two late consolations.
A minute into added time and again it should have been game over, more so than Harry’s missed chance. Cometh the hour cometh the returning prodigal son.
It was Gareth Bale’s moment, he already kind of had one as soon as he came on the pitch, with a free-kick he took tamely straight at the keeper. But here it was the chance. The real chance. He control passed a high ball just outside the Spurs area to Harry and set off running. Halfway into the opposing half and he received the ball back from Kane. Cutting inside he jinked around the defender before firing his left-foot shot just wide of the near post. He really, really should have scored and that would have been it. Four two up with a matter of minutes to play. He was being pushed at the time… where was VAR?
But now there was still enough time for them to get something and they did. The last kick of the game. Another free-kick from the right, this time they clear a near post ball but Winks boots towards Lanzini and as he puts his foot to it Winks is cowering next a player he should have gone straight through to block his mistake. But no and it flies into the net off the bar past Hugo, who got a hand but had no chance.
Jose didn’t want to say anything after the game, maybe he wanted time to reflect on the fact that Winks for Ndombele is not a like for like replacement. That you can’t weakened the middle of the park like that if you want to win, even when you’re three up with minutes to play because this is Spurs.