Sunday 17 December 2017

Tottenham v Watford - story of the match

Vincent Janssen's miss was a rare negative on a good afternoon for Tottenham.
Vincent Janssen's miss was a rare negative on a good afternoon for Tottenham.

Son Heung-min scored twice as Tottenham kept their Premier League title ambitions alive with a routine win over a poor Watford side at White Hart Lane.

With Mauricio Pochettino's men looking to reel in leaders Chelsea, top goalscorer Harry Kane was back on the bench less than a month after suffering an ankle injury.

But once again Spurs proved they do not need to rely on Kane's goals as Son struck either side of half-time to wrap up a convincing 4-0 win after quality finishes from Dele Alli and Eric Dier had set them on their way.


"'If you're going to be critical you're saying he should do better from there' - John Hartson". BBC5 Live Sport repeated their commentator very much pointing out the obvious after Vincent Janssen's embarrassing first-half miss from directly in front of goal.


Christian Eriksen. The talented midfielder was used in a deeper, more central role. He impressed by dictating much of their high tempo and continually spreading possession, contributing in the build-up to goals and in maintaining a high work-rate. It is partly because of his contributions that Harry Kane has not been especially missed.


Pochettino's afternoon was extremely positive. He rotated his team, a move often considered a risk, and still oversaw a convincing victory that maintains their momentum.

Entertainingly, he berated fourth official Lee Mason after Mousa Dembele was brought down by Abdoulaye Doucoure just moments before Alli's opening goal, at which point he turned to Mason again and hugged him.

Often next to him on the touchline was Watford manager Walter Mazzarri, whose body language was surprisingly negative from kick-off. The Italian cuts an unhappy, under-pressure figure and he again looked incapable of inspiring improvement.


Vincent Janssen has long been a figure of fun at White Hart Lane, having consistently disappointed and looked so unconvincing in front of goal. The opportunity of a rare start against an injury-hit team, at a point when first-choice striker Kane is returning to fitness and in a match Spurs dominated, was one he could not waste.

Sadly, the £17million man's comical first-half, close-range miss - one that came through a lack of confidence when a driven finisher would have converted with ease - may be remembered more than any other contribution during his time at Spurs. It captured his season in a single moment.

PLAYER RATINGS (out of 10):


Hugo Lloris: 7

Toby Alderweireld: 7

Eric Dier: 8

Jan Vertonghen: 8

Kieran Trippier: 8

Ben Davies: 7

Dele Alli: 8

Mousa Dembele: 7

Christian Eriksen: 8

Vincent Janssen: 6

Heung-Min Son: 8


Harry Kane (for Janssen, 61mins): 7

Moussa Sissoko (for Dembele, 75mins): 5

Joshua Onomah (for Son, 88mins): 5


Heurelho Gomes: 5

Daryl Janmaat: 6

Adrian Mariappa: 5

Craig Cathcart: 5

Jose Holebas: 5

M'Baye Niang: 7

Tom Cleverley: 7

Abdoulaye Doucore: 5

Nordin Amrabat: 5

Stefano Okaka: 5

Isaac Success: 6


Juan Zuniga (for Doucoure, 59mins): 5

Troy Deeney (for Amrabat, 70mins): 5

Christian Kabasele (for Okaka, 84mins): 5


Tottenham v Bournemouth, Premier League, April 15

Watford v Swansea, Premier League, April 15

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