We lost on Thursday. Weird to say, as we haven’t lost since the scum in what seems like months ago, but we actually lost Thursday….and we deserved to lose. We sucked. We were so bad that Mauricio – sweet, pure Mauricio – actually yelled at all the players. So coming in to this game against AFC Bournemouth (who shall be referred to as AFCB going forward as I am lazy and do not want to type out Bournemouth over and over again) we really hoped to get back to winning ways against a team that is, uh, not the best team in the world.
We lined up with Kane up top, Eriksen left with Lamela right and Dembele in the #10 slot. Dier and Alli, the English Xavi and Iniesta, as our pivot with Walker, Vertonghen, Alderweireld, and Rose as our back four with Lloris in goal. Seems like a good decision! Seems like a team that would go for a win and doesn’t have Andros Townsend in it, two things I look for in a starting XI. No offense to Andros, as I’m sure some of you are big fans of his, but I prefer him as a 2011-Defoe-esque super sub to a starter. He really plays more of an impact against tired legs when he can come on and stretch their oppositions defense wide and create space. Kick off starts and about 13 seconds later we do absolutely nothing and allow an unmarked whatshisface to collect a pass in the exact spot Rose should be standing but…isn’t?.... and mash a near post shot for a 1-0 AFCB lead under a minute in. Great. Just what so spursy, isn’t it? They continue to barrage us and we let them. Seemingly out of the game entirely. Somehow, magically, against the run of play Eriksen plays a great pass in behind for Kane who gets taken down by Boruc and is given a penalty. The striker makes no mistake from the spot and we are tied? Without any real possession or passing or general things that would be considered football…we are tied! Harry Kane with an actual Premier League goal, which is well deserved considering his overall play has been phenomenal, despite his ailment with Soldado-syndrome.
Seven or so minutes later, Alli is grabbed by the hips by an AFCB player looking to apparently flamenco dance with him and is brought down for a free kick. Eriksen plays a short ball off the set piece to Rose who takes a thundering shot that is blocked by AFCB, trickles past them, and right in to the path of Dembele who slots past Boruc to make it 2-1.
With seemingly nothing positive done, and maybe 10% possession thus far we are somehow up 2-1 against AFCB, which causes them to revert to that really annoying tactic of throwing crosses and lob balls up every single time they cross the halfway line, which allows us actual time to pass and do things that a professional football team should. We continued to make comically bad clearances attempts, exemplified by Toby trying to clear, hitting Alli, and coming right back to Toby to make his second attempt to clear. Our major issue is the lack of structure and positioning. Dembele and Alli switching off turns being our #10, with Lamela and Eriksen consistently drifting all around in seemingly free roles. Walker ended up at leftback for a minute, and Rose as #10…it was just a mess. Dier, my sweet precious Dier, remained a rock in the midfield and never strayed from his proper position. It is important to note that I found out AFCB’s assistant manager is named Jason Tingle, which is important to note as I will likely continue to make jokes about it. Speaking of which, Dele Alli knows how to dribble like a god and has the feet of a lambada dancer (the forbidden dance) which is making me tingle, to be honest. Shortly after a good series of possession Kane breaks the goddamn ankles of an AFCB defender and floats a cross in which is parried by Boruc…right in to the path of Lamela who SCORES! 3-1 Spurs and we are reminded that 2015-16 Lamela is a completely different person than the two years prior. What has happened to him!? I love it!
We have barely played what could be deemed professional football and yet are up 3-1 going in to the half. Maybe I should stop analyzing and critiquing the performance, because clearly its getting results. From this point forward my match report is just going to be: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯. Our team is now making positive runs and pressing extremely well which is helped by the fact the entire AFCB backline is cast by a ragtime squadron of confused Soviet foot soldiers. However, a horrible period in which our fullbacks decide to play CB and collapse in the middle of the pitch, allows AFCB two very close chances at goal – a Toby goal line clearance and a post the only things stopping it from being a 3-2 game. Our fullback’s are too eager to get forward and central, giving the AFCB wingers acres of space along the flanks. Its halftime at the Vitality Stadium, which paired with the fact that AFCB is nicknamed the Cherries and their AM is named Mr. Tingle, makes this entire thing seem like one big Viagra advert…. And its 3-1 Spurs.
Halftime ends and we make 0 changes, which I mean both in the sense of no substitutions and we let AFCB come out and take a few swings at our goal again. We let them come at us with no counter attack for about 7 or 8 minutes. Boruc smashes a clearance at Dembele, which almost deflects off him, and right back in for what would have been the Belgian’s second of the game. We looked a bit more comfortable in possession following the initial barrage from AFCB and play unrushed football piecing together some lovely passing. Eriksen plays a beautiful floating ball in to the backline after being given several days worth of time and HARRY KANE!!! The striker scores his second of the match (which is a weird thing to say this season) with a great finish to direct Eriksen’s gorgeous pass in to the net. 4-1 Spurs and AFCB looks like someone took away their potato rations for a month. We win a corner and KANE HAS AWOKEN!!!!!!!! Alderweireld plays a weird nonsensical header 2 feet from the ground that trickles into Boruc’s hands and instead of picking it up he just stops it, allowing Harry Kane to latch on to it and easily push it in for a HARRY KANE HATTRICK!!! I need to insert an audio file of me singing that song by the Scorpions.
AFCB come back at us desperate for a goal after finding themselves 5-1 down, and Hugo makes a gorgeous save as we have come so accustomed to. Minutes later Eriksen finds acres of space 25 or so yards out and curls a shot past Boruc and right on to the post. Agonizingly missed, because it was so well deserved. Mason makes his return after 8 games out, as Dembele makes way for our little Goth midfielder. We refuse to sit back, and continue to make attempts on goal; just the final little bit is there. Balls fall our way, passes connecting, and proper football being played…just no results. Kane is withdrawn in the 84th for Clinton N’Jie and receives a standing ovation for his hat trick heroics today. Immediately after coming on N’Jie shows his amazing pace and damn near scores, forcing Boruc to make an actually pretty nice save considering how bad he’s been today. So close for the Cameroonian. As the game winds down, being 4 goals up, we lack that final bite and seem unrushed and ready to end the game. We maintained positive possession and kept moving toward their goal but nothing really came of it, and the game ends 5-1 Spurs in a weirdly played but well deserved win. Harry Kane is back mother*******!!!!!
Honestly, my match report is literally ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ and the phrase: HARRY KANE IS BACK MOTHER******!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There’s not much else to say. Dier was a rock, Alli is magical, and Eriksen is too good for us. Great performance despite some errors in positioning, and we go three points better and continue our unbeaten run in the premier league. Oh happy days! I am tingling. COYS!
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