|Tottenham 4 Newcastle United 2 -
Tuesday 2nd January 2001
Weather : Dry, slightly windy.
Crowd : 34,324
Referee : Mr. S. Bennett (Orpington)
Scorers : Tottenham - Doherty 27, Anderton (pen) 30, Rebrov 35, Ferdinand 77.
Newcastle United : Solano 23, Dyer (pen) 49.
Tottenham: Sullivan, Doherty,
Campbell, Perry, Anderton (Young 82), Sherwood, Leonhardsen (Walker 48),
Clemence, King, Ferdinand, Rebrov.
Subs Not Used: Korsten, Davies, Thelwell.
Newcastle United : Harper, Barton, Goma, Griffin (Glass 69),
Hughes, Bassedas, Speed, Acuna, Solano, Dyer, Ameobi (Lua-Lua 69).
Subs Not Used: Given, Stephen Caldwell, Cordone.
Where do you start with a match like this ?
It had everything - even someone being asked to move their red Honda !!
early exchanges were fairly innocuous and it was only when Sherwood made
another awful pass, which was intercepted by Amoebi that things went
wrong. Tim tried to mug the young Newcastle striker to get the
ball back rather than tackle him and was shrugged off, as he laid the
ball square to Solano to drive past an unprotected Sullivan.
Groans rang around the Lane, but Tottenham managed to get back into it
within minutes. A scramble from a corner resulted in a header
being poked forward by Les, but it was smuggled away, but almost immediately
Clemence swung over a cross that Doherty, still up from the corner, met
with a firm header to equalise. With the Irishman playing in a
more familiar defensive role (as he does in the reserves), he appeared
happier than he looked at Ipswich days before as a striker.
went even better three minutes later, when a ball in from the left found
Gary Speed (who seemed to have some sort of match rage going on with
constant shouting at the ref (how he stayed on is a mystery) and lunging
tackles on Spurs players) dragging Anderton down as the ball passed
him. It was a foolish "challenge", as the ref was
ideally positioned to see what was going on. Anderton took the
penalty kick himself and lashed it in to give Spurs the lead. He
could have repeated the feat just a couple of minutes on, when another
corner was headed goalwards by Doherty and Solano, on the line, stuck
out a hand to stop it going in. A red card for the Peruvian and
another spot kick was awarded, this time though, Darren was foiled by
the flailing leg of Harper. Not to be denied though, Doherty
picked up the ball just inside the Newcastle half and ran forward with
the ball. He reached the edge of the box and slipped a little pass
in to Rebrov standing onside a foot inside the right corner of the
area. As it came, he switched feet and hit the ball with the
outside of his right foot and it flew over the keeper and went in off
the far post as he looked at the goal. It was a sublime finish and
one we hope to see more of from Sergei. His fierce drive just
moments later saw Harper throw up a hand that luckily diverted the ball
away as it swerved all over the place. The keeper also needed to
be agile when a header from his own defender nearly crept inside the far
post from a free-kick.
At half-time, with a
man and a two goal advantage, it was hoped that Spurs would press
forward to finish the game off. From a corner at the Newcastle
end, the ball broke to Acuna, who fed Dyer running half the field to
meet Sullivan just inside the box. As the Spurs keeper dived at
his feet, the young England international went down and the ref again
pointed to the spot. Another red card meant that Spurs had to
sacrifice Leonhardsen to bring on Walker, but his first action did not
result in a save with Dyer rapping the ball in to make it 3-2. As
a striker, Dyer was pushing forward and on another run about five
minutes later, he was floored as Perry took the ball from him. It
was not inside the box, but for some reason the player went ballistic at
the linesman - calling him all sorts of names. When he flagged to
attract the ref's attention, Dyer was shocked to see a red card produced
and he became the third player to leave the field courtesy of the
Spurs now had the space
to play as they would have liked. However, this did still not
produce a perfect passing display with too often the ball being given
away. It did allow some of the players to show what they were
capable of and King showed some good skills, while Campbell rampaged
forward at every opportunity. Spurs had to wait until the 77th
minute before their two goal lead was restored; Sir Les heading in a
goal from an Anderton free-kick reminiscent of the goal Derby scored
against the Magpies recently and the one that Ferdinand notched on the
opening day of the season against Ipswich. It was left to Ian Walker
to show what he could do in the last few minutes, as he pushed away a
close in shot from an in-running Speed and then tipped a powerful header
over the bar, as Newcastle pushed for a consolation.
night of excitement and a win which was desperately needed. In
truth, the football on offer was not of the highest technical quality,
but the Spurs goals were welcome after a barren time and were all well
taken. There was more to be positive about, with quite a few
promising performances, but there are still some who need to step up
their form to help push Spurs up the table.
TOP MAN : - GARY DOHERTY