Match Report: Luton Town 0 Spurs 1 – Top of the League
Only two teams in the Premier League are still unbeaten. Us and Arsenic and Old Lace. City suffered their second defeat of the season by succumbing to the poorer half of North London. Also, over the weekend, we saw Liverpool surrender their lead to Brighton, which ended in a draw. This means we are at the top of the League over the international break. Arsenic and Old Lace are in second place on goal difference, while City rest in third place on 18 points (two points below us). Followed by Villa and Brighton in 5th and 6th respectively. Newcastle are 8th, United in 10th, and Pochettino’s Rasputin’s are 11th.
After eight games, we have 20 pts, which is one less than when we won the double in 1960/61 at this time of the season. All lovely jubbly! But there is still a long way to go. Interestingly, anybody who was where we are at this part of the season has ended up in the top four… 11 of those have gone on to win the League. But a long way to go, as I said.
Our trip – Mel and I – only took an hour and a half from my house (that is from my house, Mel took a bit longer as he had to come from Gloucester). Once we got there, we parked in a car park that was only a 35-minute walk away from the stadium. The car park where we parked, and the surrounding area will be used for the new Luton Town football club.
Upon reaching the Kenilworth Road ground, we noticed that halfway down the road, homes have effectively been cut in half to make way for two entrances to the town’s football ground, Kenilworth Road. The stadium was built in 1905 and is among the most unique in the football league. I can’t remember when I last was at this ground… I think the last time we met was in the 90s or something like that.
There are over 50 residents living in homes that form part of Luton’s classic ground. The majority live in the houses dotted around the away end, but there are others spread around the ground. Once there, we walked around the outside and took photos; however, once in, we had to pick our own seats quickly as they weren’t reserved. But did manage to get good seating at the front, and once there, we didn’t move in case somebody jumped in and took our places.
As for the game…
… well, we were far the better team, even when reduced to 10 men, but that didn’t stop us from battling until we got the necessary goal to claim all three points. I did predict that we would win by six goals, and before the sending-off, we threw everything at the Luton goal. We could have got those six goals if our player hadn’t been sent off. In fact, in the first 10 minutes, we had 91% of the possession. We finally ended up with 67% of control, even with ten men. We had 15 shots on goal; three were on target but were stopped by their keeper, with one getting through. They had 16 fouls to our 7.
We never let up; we kept attacking their goal, just like in the previous eight games (including the Cup match against Fulham).
Yes, our ten-man team maintained our unbeaten record as a narrow win at Luton took us to the top of the Premier League. City’s attempt to dislodge us came unstuck at the Emirates.
After going down to 10 men when Yves Bissouma was sent off just before half-time, our winner came from Micky van de Ven, who poked home his first goal for the club on 52 minutes after James Maddison cut the ball back from a short corner.
Luton had captain Tom Lockyer’s low header chalked off when Elijah Adebayo was deemed to have fouled Cristian Romero as he headed Mads Andersen’s free-kick across goal. A more confident approach in the second half led the Hatters to create plenty of opportunities, but we held on to leave Luton Town without a win at home this season.
As I said earlier, Ange Postecoglou’s brilliant start saw us unbeaten in eight Premier League games and sitting at the top of the League.
Remarkably, the home side made it through the opening 20 minutes without conceding after we had kept attacking the Luton goal.
Richarlison twice had chances in the opening five minutes but shot his first effort from Maddison’s whipped cross over the bar before having a low drive saved by Thomas Kaminski in the Luton goal. Pedro Porro then struck a shot wide, and a poor Tom Lockyer clearance was snatched at by Son.
Bissourma’s silly mistake…
Bissouma had already ensured he would miss our next game by picking up a fifth booking of the season for dragging down Chiedozie Ogbene. Then, he picked up a second yellow for diving on the edge of the Luton area. Rightly, he was sent off. Hopefully, he’ll learn a very important lesson from his stupid mistake.
We barely created any further chances after taking the lead in the second half. We took off the attacking threat of Son and Maddison in favour of the more defensive options Oliver Skipp and Emerson Royal.
All this has shown the world our resolve and belief in ourselves, and more of that was on display on Saturday as we got the job done against 11-men Luton.
After the game, Postecoglou praised his side’s “character and resilience” but said they should have been “three or four up” after the first half. We started really well, but then you get the red card, and it is a different type of game,” he told the TV sports presenter.
We have become very tight as a group. Not only are we winning games, but apart from the football, which has been good, our resilience has been top-notch.
You can see that the players want to change the destiny of past managers’ twisted defensive vision (which has never been our style of play).
As I said earlier, it will get harder… we played Liverpool and Arsenic from the top of the League, and the rest resting near the lower echelons of the deep. Harder tests are just around the corner. But I think we will be ready. Granted, Yves Bissouma will miss a game, but that will only allow others to step up to the mark and show us what they can do. Some good talents are waiting in the wings.
Ange Postecoglou has said that it will take a few transfer windows to get the team he wants… maybe so… but if we can keep up the momentum, we have a really good chance of finishing in the top four at the end of the season. It is too early to talk about winning the League; nevertheless, we should have a better picture of our progress under Ange Postecoglou by Christmas. To Dare is to didgeridoo, as they say in Australia… the phrase is catching on here… G’day, Bruce!
After the final whistle, we stayed in our seats and took in the spectacular scenes before us (that was our players coming over and applauding our support… even Ange came over and raised his clapping hands to us). Then we left the stadium and made our way to the car park and home (oh, stopping on the way to get something to eat and drink). I had Janette waiting for me, wanting to know how things went. Mel continued on his way for another hour to pleasure Liz with his words of joy. In the evening, we watched MOTD – I sadly fell asleep – but saw it the next day.
Janette’s parents have become Spurs fans and always watch the game on MOTD (because of me) and then ask me for a fuller version of how my Saturday went when they next see me.
The only downside is that we have to wait 2 weeks for our next match (Fulham on Monday, 23rd)… but we will be at the top of the League for all that time.
Up the Spurs!
My name is Glenn Renshaw.
I am currently a Premium Season Ticket holder (West Stand) in the new stadium. Before that – at White Hart Lane – a season ticket holder in various parts of the ground (mainly in the North stand).
Before becoming a season ticket holder, I stood on the shelf and various other parts of the ground since the 1960s (the season of the double). In 1987 I became one of the first to hold a Spurs Membership card. I was also a life long member of the Spurs supporters club (now defunct).
I go to all home, away and abroad matches.
I was born in 1955, Edgware, London. I currently live in Berkshire.
I also collect all Spurs books, Spurs handbooks, Spurs programmes etc.
Previously, I wrote for Spurs Fanzines: The Spur, Spur of the Moment, My Eyes have seen the Glory and various other Spurs fanzines’. I also wrote for the SpursWeb app & its website.
I currently write and work for spursnetwork.com and its website. I write its Reviews & Match reports and a lot more.
My other interests are; reading, history, social history, Politics, going to the gym, wine, going out for a meal, music (all sorts), writing, theatre, concerts, going on holidays, socialising etc.
I have been writing blogs/ articles since 1989
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