Sunday, January 18, 2009

Spurs v. Portsmouth 1/18/09

Okay, I'm always wanting to try and get 3 points from a match and when I watched the first half I was positive that we were going to pull 3 points out of this. Pavy and Defoe looked like they might make a good partnership before Pavy went down, I was gutted when he had to go off so early on. It's pretty clear that Bent and Defoe don't get on, on the pitch that is. From what I've read they don't get on off the pitch either, but all I care about is what is going on on the field. They are too similar, looking to make runs off the ball, they need someone to hold the ball up for them, which is what Pavy does.

Losing Ledley is always trouble, but I give Dawson less stick than many others do. He puts his all out there on the field every match, and had a good tackle in the first half. Where I get nervous about Dawson is his touch when on the ball, but if Ledley is going to be out for sometime we'll see how it goes. Corluka can also shift inside and would make a great partnership with Woodgate, if only Hutton wasn't hurt.

I had that sinking feeling when Nugent scored that this was going to be another day that I would be pissed off at the result, but Defoe came good with a great strike. I really felt that we had the upper hand and should have scored a second, but with the sitter that Bent missed, I knew we were destined for a draw.

We've got several who are nicked up, with Ledley having a potentially torn hamstring, Corluka, Lennon and Gomes all nicked up as well. Not to mention Pavy, Jenas and Hutton as well.

So that is basic view of the match, 1 point is better than none, and at least we're off the bottom of the table now.

Player Ratings:

Gomes: 7 Couldn't be faulted on the goal that Nugent scored, with the deflection. Harry even admitted he shouldn't have been out there with his injury, but did well. I don't know if he's turned the corner, but he did the job yesterday.

Corluka: 7 I think he's been the best of the summer buys thus far. Did the job yesterday, solid in defense as he's been all season. He's getting forward more than he did when he first got here. Made a great tackle in the first half, and is looking more comfortable in attack.

Woodgate: 8 Solid as always. Is comfortable on the ball, and had was solid in marshaling the defense after Ledley went off. What would we do without him?

King: 6 Can't really get too much of a read on him, he went off early, and it looks like it'll be awhile before we see the captain leading out the team again. It looked like he was struggling, which was painful for all of us to watch I'm sure.

Bale: 6 It looks like he's playing a little better. I'm not sure who'll be playing at Burnley, it seems Harry had preferred Assou-Ekotto, but Bale is looking more confident than he has in a long time. Still hasn't been on a winning side in the Premier League, let's just hope it's a matter of time.

Lennon: 8 Probably the best player on the pitch for us tonight. His darting runs infield kept Portsmouth on their toes, and he looked dangerous almost every time he was on the ball. Starting to look like the Lennon of 2006 again, it seems he and Defoe have a good rapport, let's hope this keeps up.

Zokora: 6.5 Solid as the holding midfielder. I know many Spurs fans don't rate him, but I think he's been solid for us, not the best at getting forward, but as the link between defense and attack he was very solid last night. I might prefer to see Huddlestone in this role sometimes because he's a better passer, but Didier did the job yesterday, and you can never doubt his commitment to the shirt.

Modric: 6 I love Luka, when he's been on he is one of the most creative players around, but when he's not on he can certainly get lost in the fray like he did yesterday. He made a couple of good balls, but I didn't feel he every got comfortable in the game. When he and Lennon both are on their game, we'll be in business.

O'Hara: 6.5 Solid on the left again. Not the typical winger, but has been doing the job. Maybe sits on the ball too much at times, but his balls in were pretty solid. Moved back when Bentley came on, and held the fort well.

Defoe: 7 Delivered the goal that moved us off the bottom of the table, and was dangerous throughout the first half. Doesn't link well with Bent and got lost a bit in the second half, but got stuck in, and was active, hopefully Pavy will be better and we'll see how they really link up.

Pavlyuchenko: 5 Looked like he was linking up well with Defoe before he got hurt. Had a chance to put one in, but Defoe was in the way, but he is getting in better positions.


Bent: 4 Doesn't link well with Defoe. Missed a sitter, we all know that. Made some good runs, and put forth good effort, but it looks like his confidence is shot at the moment.

Dawson: 6 Solid in defense, not super comfortable on the ball, but did well in the air. He and Woodgate will work well hopefully over the next couple of weeks.

Bentley: 6.5 Looks more like the player we paid for, and not the one we've had. Looked a little better on free kicks than he has, hopefully he's turned the corner.

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