Angeball doesn’t work against

Joao Gomes double defeats Spurs! | Tottenham Hotspur 1-2 Wolves | Extended Highlights

a flat back ten.

Spurs latest limp performance in losing at home to Wolves highlighted the paucity of the squad and that Angeball really just doesn’t function against a team that sits back and waits for the counter, well the way the Spurs play it, which you assume is the way Ange wants.

Three defeats in a row to Gary O’Neill, one with Bournemouth now the double with Wolves. Said before, say again he wasn’t happy about being sacked by the south coast side but it’s the best thing that happened to him and Wolves. Bournemouth haven’t done too bad out of it either.

Paucity of the squad. Well, here we are again with a couple of first XI defenders missing, this time the fullbacks Porro and Udogie. So here we are again with Emerson Royal and Ben Davies. Happy… happy… joy… joy.

There’s lies, damn lies and statistics. But sometimes those statistics are very telly. Despite not playing the final 19 minutes of normal times, along with 5 minutes of added time Emerson Royal ended the game with the second most touches of any player in the game. That pretty much summed up Spurs. In a game in which Spurs had 71% of the ball, this clown saw more of the ball than any of the people that can actually do something.

Romero had the most touches, van de Ven the third most. Which goes a long way to explain how in having 71% of the ball Spurs had nearly half the number of shots on target as the visitors.

It can all be summed up by two moments from Spurs. Last week the winner came from a fast breakaway, Son flying down the wing and putting a cross in for Johnson who was flying down the opposite wing to be there to meet it. This game, Son flies down the wing but when he looks up there’s nobody there. Why? Well, Kulusevski has barely broken into a jog as he lollygagged down the right. I said last week it doesn’t work with the Swede and his slowness and his insistence on stopping to cut inside nearly all the damn time.

Funnily enough he was majorly involved in the one good moment, though he did have a shot well saved. Just after the break when he scored. But he was forced to be at the byline by the situation, it wasn’t somewhere he ventured near at any other time in the game. And for once he played the ball early, which took the keeper off guard, instead of taking just a few more touches.

And that’s it. When you’re faced with a flat back 10, you have to get behind them. But bar that one time Spurs didn’t. When the middle of the pitch in front of the opposition box is crowded you don’t need your fullbacks in the middle of the pitch. You need them wide, you need to keep the width. You need triangles and one touch to get behind them. You have Richarlison who can score with his head and scores when he doesn’t have to think about it but you don’t put any crosses from the byline in.

So we had people screaming for Richarlison to be replaced and Son to move into the middle and you wonder if they’ve ever watched a Spurs game. When has Sonny ever shone when playing up front against a packed defence? He needs space, space to attack, he doesn’t function when crowded. As shown after the changes were made and Son did move centrally he had the fewest touches of all the Spurs players bar Lo Celso who was introduced six minutes after the Korean changed position. Hell even Royal had over twice as many touches of the ball and he left the pitch shortly after.

So Wolves only had 29% of the ball yet had more attempts on goal, as yet again Vicario kept Spurs from being a mid-table team. Amazingly it was only a few weeks ago that Spurs had one of the best records of not conceding from corners, yet since the City cup game it seems to be a weekly occurrence now. Hell, here Wolves didn’t even have to bother about impeding Vicario, as they just left the scorer all on his own on the edge of the six yard box. Let the midget have a free header, what’s the worst that could happen?

The winner was pure Angeball. A breakaway from a Spurs corner, of course Spurs don’t have the luxury of playing against Emerson Royal. Neto flying down the pitch, Royal loping with not a clue what to do. He cuts back in the area, completely losing Royal before playing the ball back to the first goal scorer to get his second, yet again left all alone.

You can see why Spurs want Neto, you see why Wolves want to keep him. Kulusevski might have more goals 6 to 2. But Neto’s 11 assists would have been handy, compared to the Swede’s 2. A player who knows how to go forward, when to pass, when to shoot.

All round it was a poor performance, topped off by Ben Davies late header that could have rescued a point but ended up going miles wide when he was under no pressure whatsoever. Angeball is fading…

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