BOAZ MYHILL deserved the headlines for his outstanding goalkeeping display, but there is a more worrying factor that is threatening to cripple Tottenham’s Champions League ambitions.
Hull City, inspired by Myhill – who made seven fantastic saves – frustrated their hosts in London after taking advice from Stoke City manager Tony Pulis and Mick McCarthy of Wolverhampton Wanderers.
They had both achieved 1-0 victories this season at White Hart Lane, and Hull manager Phil Brown followed their lead by packing the midfield and earning a goalless draw.
One point from three matches against sides who are expected to finish at the bottom end of the Premier League table is not exactly the kind of form that will allow Spurs to maintain their quest to finish in the top four.
Yet manager Harry Redknapp is refusing to show too much concern. ‘‘I’m disappointed not to win, but their keeper turned in one of the finest performances I’ve seen,’’ he said.
“Their game plan may have been for him to make seven world-class saves because it was not as though they worked us out and stopped us from creating chances.
“We have got a difficult run coming up but have been on a great run of clean sheets recently. We just didn’t get that breakthrough. One goal and it could have been game over.”
Myhill (27) set the tone for his afternoon with a wonderful save on 37 minutes, that left his manager making comparisons to Jim Montgomery’s miraculous stop in the 1973 FA Cup final for Sunderland against Leeds.
Myhill pushed away a drive from Wilson Palacios, and then somehow blocked a rebound effort from Tottenham forward Robbie Keane.
He went on to make further stops to deny Keane, Jermain Defoe, substitute Peter Crouch, and two efforts from Luka Modric.
The display helped the keeper delete memories of earlier this season, when Spurs scored five past him at the KC Stadium. He said: “I remember that game vividly but today we all pulled together and got a great result. I’m quite lucky I’ve got a big head, because that is how I saved one of the shots.”
Manager Brown added: “He didn’t just do it on one occasion but two or three. It was a great defensive performance from us, highlighted by the contribution of the goalkeeper. The attitude was spot-on from everyone.”
Tottenham (4-4-2): Gomes, Corluka, Dawson, Bassong, Bale; Modric, Huddlestone, Palacios (Jenas, 55), Kranjcar; Defoe, Keane (Crouch, 61). Substitutes not used: Alnwick (gk), Bentley, Pavlyuchenko, Naughton, Rose.
Hull (4-4-1-1): Myhill, McShane, Zayatte, Gardner, Dawson; Garcia (Mouyokolo, 82), Boateng, Hunt, Barmby (Kilbane, 64); Geovanni (Vennegoor of Hesselink 74); Fagan. Substitutes not used: Duke (gk), Mendy, Ghilas, Cairney.
Referee: M Atkinson (Yorkshire).
Booked: Tottenham Palacios, Bassong, Huddlestone, Jenas; Hull Barmby, Fagan.
Man of the match: Myhill.