LONDON — Jose Mourinho has had the merit of meeting Tottenham Hotspur since he joined last December, but they may need to be more ambitious if they are to retain the Premier League title. Sunday’s score at Crystal Palace was a well-deserved 1-1, with punches exchanged in a shallow fight for the 23-minute opening by Harry Kane, who dictated most of the second half.
Jeff Schlupp’s equalizer in the 81st. The second minute may have been due to him miss too many of the team free kicks, which destroyed Mourinho when Spurs lost late points against Newcastle and West Ham at the beginning of the season, but perhaps they were punished for missing the initiative so intentionally.
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Harry Kane scored the first goal, and so continues his wonderful collaboration with Seon Heung Min – they have now scored 32 goals together in the Premier League, four less than Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard, but in reality it was more due to the cheek of the English captain and a pass on the goalkeeper’s concentration in Vicente Huayta’s palace. After receiving an easy pass from Song from a central position of 35 meters, Kane took his chance and swung a shot to the right that Huayta caught and found the net.
So far, the game was over: Ebereki Eze and Wilfried Zaha gave Spurs a hard time, but on 35 minutes Spurs made only one goal until the Paleis finally drew. They created the pressure that led to Schlupp’s goal to win the home team and the 2000 fans at Selhurst Park for the first time since 7th place. Mars, when Palace was looking for a tangible return on their work and efforts.
Spurs only started playing again after their lead disappeared, eventually scoring almost three points when Eric Dierre brilliantly converted the penalty kick, which was brilliantly parried by Guéheit. To tell you the truth, they missed an opportunity to get results long before that.
Fault! The file name is not specified. The betting of the Tottenham Hotspur title will depend on the possibility to play with smaller Premier League teams, which was not possible at the Palace. Clive Rose/Getty images
Although this conservatism was influenced by Mourinho’s classic tactical approach, as evidenced by the seven points scored in Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal, the 58-year-old insisted that the decision to sit back and try to put the game offside was not his intention.
My instructions have not changed since I two days ago, yesterday before the game and at rest, he said. It’s a game where you need the ball. This is a game where you can’t take a low block. There are opponents who have a low block, and you can be there for three hours and they won’t hit you.
There are other opponents like Crystal Palace, if you have a low block, they put giants in the box, looking for pressure, second balls, rebounds, corners, side kicks, and you can not run.
We trained the team not to do that. We did very, very well in the first half. We didn’t make the second half, but I don’t want to blame the players because they want to. If they didn’t, it’s because they couldn’t. If they couldn’t do it, it’s because the Crystal Palace was very strong at the time. Fifteen or twenty years ago there was a big difference in quality between large and small clubs. At the moment the difference between the clubs lies in the size and not in the quality. The quality is very similar and they got us into trouble.
Spurs were unable to call Gareth Bale at their late rally because he missed the game due to an illness that had nothing to do with Cowid-19. Delhi Alli, who has been in the top flight since the start of the season, made a remarkable five-minute guest appearance. He scored perhaps the best goal of his career in January 2016, when he was excellently on the edge of the penalty box, but he is now the shadow of the player who, convinced that Paris Saint-Germain could sign him in January, will have to fight for his future at Tottenham.
Tracks are another product these days, and that’s almost certainly the right thing to do when you consider that they finish at the top of the leaderboards on Sundays or in second place when Liverpool plays Fulham throughout the capital. But in order to stay there in the coming months, the tracks certainly have to show the willingness to bring the teams to the finish with something more than just defensive stamina.
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