FabricioColoccini36Saturday 9 February
Tottenham 2 Newcastle United 1 (Gouffran 24)

It is a hard call but when Newcastle went a goal down after a few minutes, would I have then settled fr a final scoreline of 2-1 to the home side? Possibly.

To me the performance mattered just as much as the result today and we again had evidence that some of the play we have seen against Villa and Chelsea isn’t going to be short-lived.

The way the players picked themselves up after that early blow was very reassuring. Some of the interplay between the likes of Sissoko, Cabaye, Gouffran and Cisse was excellent, while the way the full-backs added to the attacking play hinted at exciting times ahead.

With that collection of creative/intelligent players Jonas was then in his element helping to block Bale down the wing and also getting around the rest of the pitch to pressurise the opposition and break up play.

As for Perch, he did alright but I think the experiment of keeping him in the team at the expense of Tiote will be a short-lived one.

Newcastle’s defending contributed to the killer second goal but overall they contained a dangerous Tottenham side well. I suppose though the question is whetehr Mapou would help take it onto another level. On Thursday we should see our first proper look at him against FC Metalist in the Europa League match.

This was always going to be a tough match against fourth placed Spurs and when Bale put a Ronaldo-esque free-kick over the wall from twenty five yards plus, United could have easily gone to pieces.

Coloccini sold himself to give away the free-kick and Perch could have jumped like Jonas did in the wall but you have to accept that a free-kick like that deserves a goal.

A few weeks ago I reckon we would have headed for the break at least two or three down but the recent transformation has been astonishing. Though when you have half a team of quality players added to your starting eleven; Taylor, Cabaye, Debuchy, Sissoko, Gouffran, maybe it gives you a bit of a clue.

There was no panic, the players picked themselves up and got on with the match.

There reward was weathering the storm, playing themselves back into the game and equalising!

A flowing move ended with Sissoko pulling the ball back for Gouffran who smashed it into the net via a deflection, game on after twenty four minutes.

The rest of the half saw United continue their form and just edge the half. Jonas and Gouffran massive factors in ensuring Bale and Lennon had little joy.

Layout 1Second half saw little change as the two sides cancelled each other out but possibly the crucial blow was a bad looking injury to Gouffran after an hour. Given oxygen on the pitch replays showed it may have been accidental but nevertheless crushing for Newcastle.

A great shame as Gouffran was having his best game so far and on top of his goal he was showing some really clever play as United kept possession well, whilst at the same time pressurised the home team when not having possession.

Tottenham made changes to try and grab the win and in a roundabout way it paid off, changes meant Bale went through the middle and a long clearance saw both Perch and Coloccini hesitate which invited Bale to nip in and accelerate away with the ball. Game over.

Tiote came on but our shortage of attacking options to change matches was highlighted once again, with both Marveaux and Shola anonymous, although a deflection in injury time put in Shola but Lloris was quick off his line and blocked well.

As much as a defeat can be uplifting this was it, last week we edged out a very good team and this week Newcastle were the ones edged out. If we keep playing like this we’ll be OK.

The points return may be the same but there is a world of difference between today and the tame surrender we’ve seen at places like Southampton and home to Reading.

Onwards and upwards.

Tottenham: Lloris, Walker, Dawson, Caulker, Naughton (Assou-Ekotto 75), Parker, Dembele (Livermore 90), Lennon, Holtby (Adebayor 69), Bale, Dempsey

Newcastle United: Krul, Debuchy, Taylor, Coloccini, Santon, Cabaye, Perch (Tiote 82), Gutierrez (Shola 86), Sissoko, Gouffran (Marveaux 59), Cisse

Unused Subs: Harper, Mapou, Anita, Obertan

Ref: Phil Dowd

Crowd: 36,244

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15 comments
alreet
alreet 5pts

I think either perez or aarons will start against arsenal. We have to have thauvin right and mitro up. Id plant tiote colback and wijnaldum in the middle. We have to use the wingers and get the ball to them early.

Hetton Mag
Hetton Mag 5pts

I thought Perez was outstanding at Manu. Great football brain, tricky, skilfull and hard working, tracking back and making a couple of excellent tackles. On that performance he would be an ever present for me. Still not sure about Mitro, new shearer, new McDonald no he looks like the new billy white hurst to me. I'm still stunned at the transformation of Anita . Expect McLaren to go for 2 holding midfielders. Wow such choices he has! Colo always plays better with Taylor beside him, apart from injury record I've always thought Taylor to be a decent player, he doesn't deserve the stick he gets re performance, public statements different matter. Bloody hell Im looking fwd to a game.

stepaylor
stepaylor 5pts

With thauvin and aarons playing wide and mitrovic up front, wijnaldum and sissoko box to box and either colback, tiote or anita holding we have a strong side with exciting young talent. If colocinni stays on form and creates a solid partnership with mbemba. The only weakish link may be haidara but he has the potential to be a top player. Has the pace and work ethic needed, just his touch and decision making need time.

With taylor, tiote, anita, de jong, cisse and perez not able to get into my first 11 it shows we have the best squad we have had in years. With armstrong, gillead, heardman, roberts, gihlespy, sterry and woodman coming through we have a great foundation of young players. Only cisse, colocinni and tiote in the whole squad will need replacing over the next 2 yrs and if that change is an improvement in quality then the future will be bright.

Mal44
Mal44 5pts

@stepaylor  ''Only cisse, colocinni and tiote in the whole squad will need replacing over the next 2 yrs and if that change is an improvement in quality then the future will be bright''.


Given that the contracts of Williamson, Obertan, Taylor and Marveaux are up next year (plus Elliott, Vuckic and Ferguson who are more peripheral squad members), I think there will be more than the three you mention. But as you say the future is beginning to look brighter - still worried about the current depth of our defence though, especially when injuries and suspensions kick in.

stepaylor
stepaylor 5pts

Yeah i didnt include any of them apart from taylor in my first post as i assume they wont be around anyway. Taylor is likley to have his deal extended, on current form good value but with his injury record we have to wonder whether 40k a week can be better spent. I like having local lads in the squad and i think his personality is good for the group so i would give him a 3 yr deal

Mal44
Mal44 5pts

@stepaylor  I was surprised by Taylors performance last week; he was excellent and showed some maturity which has been sadly lacking in the past. I hope it continues as a lack of consistency has always been his problem. He'll be fighting for a new contract so fingers crossed that he has a really good season.

DomUniqu3
DomUniqu3 5pts

Need to keep Perez in I think he's an asset to the team, best player last year imo

george8783
george8783 5pts

picked Alexander Mitrovic up for training today 


what a level headed young man he is 


a new hero in the making 


speaks english very well has his family with him 


looks much fitter than 3 weeks ago


and he has shown he does not have to get booked to frighten the premier league defenders his presence will create chances and he should score plenty 


good luck tomorrow 

DanH87
DanH87 5pts

What is this 1998? There isn't a single team in the PL that plays two strikers anymore. Mitrovic to me is the epitome of the modern PL striker and if we are to have any chance of success this season he has to start every game he can. Forget about Cisse. 

Kazie23
Kazie23 5pts

Uhm...City played with two strikers last season

alreet
alreet 5pts

Need to keep cisse as a sub. He can still put em away. New era though. No more reliance on gouffran ameobi and colback to get the goals.

JohnEllis2
JohnEllis2 5pts

We have to find a starting place for young arrons his pace and eye for goal is scary

Kazie23
Kazie23 5pts

I know...And Ayoze perez

wor monga
wor monga 5pts

There’s plenty of time for all eventualities to occur over the length of the season…Cisse and Perez will play a major part, but the main thing now is converting the work we’ve done into a win…preferably at home against Arsenal…that must be the total motivation for the team, and nothing but that!!!