During their home match at White Hart Lane (which apparently relocated to the ice planet Hoth), Tottenham Hotspur stole a last-minute point from Manchester United, who have comfortably set up shop on top of the table.
With a goal from RVP in the 25th min (his first touch of the ball, too, that beautiful bastard) Tottenham displayed something we have yet to see from them so far this season; resilience. And not just resilience, but calculated resilience. Every ball was fought for with surprising calm and collectiveness for 93 minutes and it paid off. This spirit, sadly to say, has not always been present for the Hotspurs this year, who have conceded more goals in the closing minutes of matches than any other team in the league.
Perhaps the return of several players has rejuvenated the team a bit, with Scott Parker starting his first Premier League game this season as well as Assou-Ekotta gracing the grass in his first since September.
While previously sidelined players certainly brought positive results Sunday, the most impressive performance certainly came from Aaron Lennon. Not only did Lennon out hustle everyone on the pitch (spoiling several United counter attacks), he appeared dangerous to the Devils’ defense every time the ball was at his feet. And the good news for Tottenham is that Lennon’s excellent productivity is on the rise, consistently improving game by game.
To cough up Tottenham’s draw/victory to the fault of Manchester United would be misleading to say the least. The devils put up a tough match that certainly required the Spurs to dig deep. With possession split at 51% - 49% (favoring the Spurs), the match was without a doubt a 93 minute-long battle. Few mistakes were made by Manchester United, however no one really shined and no spectacular attempts at goal were made. A simple glance at the numbers tells the story: Shots- Spurs 18, United 4; Shots on goal- Spurs 9, United 2; Corners won- Spurs 9, United 4; Goals scored by American strikers with 22 seconds left – Spurs 1, United 0.
United’s passing was certainly sharp and superb (as usual); they simply couldn’t connect that last pass that usually leads to the back of the net. The majority of United’s attacks rarely broke the 18-yard box. In reality, the one and only true threat from United resulted in a goal. After that, the Spur’s back line held tough and foiled the rest of United’s attempts.
Bottom line, table leaders Manchester United, who have been steam rolling all competitors lately, have been stone-walled by the Champions League-spot- searchers Tottenham. While this may seem overshadowed by Tottenham’s 3-2 victory over Manchester United back in September, one has to realize that even as Tottenham has grown stronger since then, so has Manchester United. My stock in AVB’s line of cologne for men has certainly ticked up after Sunday’s results.