Last season, as Leicester were surprising the footballing world with their amazing title-winning performances, Tottenham were also making strides towards establishing themselves as top 4 contenders. The progress from Mauricio Pochettino side was evident for everyone to see. They tailed off toward the end of the season, however you could see that the season’s heroics weren’t just a one-off.
This season Spurs have carried the momentum and look like real contenders.
I personally fancied Spurs before the Manchester City game and they didn’t let me down. I have always wondered how a Pep Guardiola side would cope if the opposition just played Pep and his team at their own game.
I got my answer on Sunday – not very well, as they were completely out-played at White Hart Lane. I don’t want to dwell too much on Manchester City as I believe it takes away the focus from what was a perfect display by the Spurs players.
Spurs were straight out of the blocks, applying pressure to the City full backs constantly. They kept pressing the Manchester City players forcing the City players to retreat.
The Spurs players took advantage of Manchester City’s mandate of playing out from the back and playing short passes. Every time Claudio Bravo played the ball, the Spurs players were chasing him down waiting for a mistake.The midfielders were disciplined and ensured that Manchester City didn’t have the space to pass into, which essentially neutralised the City players.
Spurs were also defensively brilliant, the awareness and determination from the Spurs back-line were perfect throughout the 90 minutes. The defensive five for Spurs always work hard and, for me, they are best defensive unit the division.
Mauricio Pochettino’s record against Pep Guardiola is very good and you could see throughout the game that Pochettino knew how to deal with Guardiola’s tactical approach. However, overall, I still believe Manchester City edge Tottenham at the end of the season.
I expect Spurs to finish top 4, but they do lack strength and depth and I do think this will ultimately cost them this season.
Spurs have shown their credentials on Sunday, and if the team and manager stick together, Spurs will be up there for years to come.
photo credit: cfcunofficial <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/121676765@N07/23418410075″>Spurs 0 Chelsea 0</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/”>(license)</a>