Match Report: Spurs 3 Morecombe 1(we nearly blew it).

Match Report: Spurs 3 Morecombe 1(we nearly blew it).

What a weird couple of days; beaten by the Ruskies on Wednesday and nearly humiliated by Morecombe at our Tottenham Stadium. But in both matches, we live to fight another day.

Because the Morecombe match was a low attendance game, other friends in our Whatsapp group joined us in Premium (such as Rick and Sue). Most of us got to the ground early, the drinks flowed (as they usually do), and of course, the discussion was about our game at Chelsea. As for Morecombe, Terry said (jokingly, I think) we will lose 1-0; nearly a prophetic outcome for that day. I went for 5-0, and why not… we should have beaten them by that score; after all, they are only Morecombe, not bloody Man City.

Even though this day was a cold day, the sun was out, creating a lovely ambience.

This game wasn’t at total capacity (40,310) but a hell of a lot more than what would have fitted into White Hart Lane. For some reason, our supporters (or most supporters) don’t seem bothered with the early rounds. To me, they are all important. I haven’t missed a home game in over 40 years (of course, I missed some games because of COVID).

To the game…

To be honest, we were struggling until Conte put the professionals on and only then were we able to secure our place in the FA Cup fourth round (Brighton at home).

The knights in white – cockerel embellished – shirts came on when we were a goal down to beat the kiddie winkles of Eric Morecambe’s hairpiece. Before that, it all started going wrong – their defender Antony O’Connor shot a volley in from 10 yards to score after 33 minutes. This prompted the away fans to go crazy as if Eric and Ernie had just come back from the dead. And in this game, Morecombe was far from dead… it was their cup final… well, that was until Winks (Winks by name, Winks by nature), along with substitutes Lucas Moura and Harry Kane, gave us victory.

Before the game, Conte made a load of changes, naming Kane and Moura on the bench and having to do without the injured Son. That shouldn’t have meant we had a group of dead beats to face the likes of Morecombe but had so-called talents, such as Dele Alli, Tanguy Ndombele, Winks and Giovani lo Celso in the starting eleven. What more did we need when facing Eric’s name-sake? After all, they were a team fighting relegation and had only won once in their past seven matches in League One; nevertheless, they were on the cusp of a giant-killing extravaganza and momentous headlines. Instead, Nottingham Forest took the headlines in their heroic victory over the Gooners on the same day.

As Morecombe was rising to the occasion – after their 1-0 lead – you could hear chants of “Premier League, you’re having a laugh” from the away end fans. And they were right… We were supposed to be Premier League gods. In contrast, they were supposed to be the inferior mortals who came to sniff the air at our dreamland home at the Tottenham stadium and then disappear in a puff of smoke; instead, we nearly vanished into the stench of Uranus’ ring.

Yes, Winks’ free-kick cross went all the way in to equalise and put some hope in the home crowd… then Goals from Moura and Kane saved our blushes inside the last 10 minutes.

Thoughts

At times, our fans questioned who were the actual Premier League team and who were supposed to be the dummies of League One?

Yes, Morecambe were 16 minutes away from celebrating a famous FA Cup victory. If it wasn’t for Zeus, Thor and Hercules coming on to defeat the mortals, we might have been the laughing stock of the world… instead, that privilege went to the muppets of miserable Newcastle and Arsenal.

Morecombe defended well but also threatened our young goalkeeper on occasions. Cole Stockton, their 18-goal striker, was threatening throughout and knew how to play us. As for their goalkeeper, Trevor Carson, full marks. In the first half, Stockton seized on a poor back pass from Joe Rodon before turning Ben Davies and firing over the bar early in the second period. So, yes, this game had – on occasions – all the trademarks of a colossal upset. We were making mistakes thanks to the pressure of Wise’s partner.

Then Conte made a few intelligent and astute substitutes, and, as they say, the rest is history… or at least history for Eric Morecombe, who now goes back to the comfort of his sarcophagus. Those substitutes breathed new life into a bunch of run-around stiffs and completely transformed the mood in the team and inside the stadium.

After Winks’ goal, Kane astonishingly missed a header from eight yards out as the pressure increased. Our late dominance showed when Moura capitalised on a mistake on the halfway line to race free, go around Carson and score before Kane put matters to rest.

Sadly, the story isn’t over yet…

Hopefully, Tanguy Ndombele has played his last game for us before he leaves the club. As everybody witnessed, Ndombele was booed as he was substituted. Sadly he has a contract until 2025, and I doubt we will retrieve anything like the £54m we paid for him. He had a history before coming to us, so who will want him now? A talented player who just wants to work for himself and not the team. He will probably go overseas, but on loan… or maybe Morecombe could take him on…, but then again, that would seem a cruel way of treating Eric’s name-sake just because we beat them. There is just no market for such a mercenary player.

So, that is that, next up, Chelski and the 2nd leg of the League Cup… where I think (or hope) we’ll see a change in our boys.

Added humour may be here (in the article), but it didn’t feel like a humorous ride before the three musketeers came on and splattered the opposition (with 10 minutes to go). We have to look at it as a work in progress, and hopefully, the combination of the transfer window and Conte will change things around.

COYS

Glenn

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