Spurs ended their Champions League group campaign with another victory, which makes five wins and just the one draw in the so called Group Of Death.
Apoel Nicosia provided even less resistance in the the last game of the group stage as they did earlier in the round. The scoreline ended up the same in both games, 3-0 to Spurs, but even with a much changed home team this was a better performance than out in Cyprus.
It also got two players off the not scored yet schneid and some game time for a few that they really need, what with suspensions, injuries and others looking like they really need rested.
With Sanchez out of the next three league games he was in here but Foyth the young Argentinian centre-back was also playing, will he feature in the coming weeks or will Dier just be shunted back into a back four. The way Rose started again, he really needs the game time. Christ, he’s been woeful at the start of games, his crossing beyond inept.
You can’t say that for the other side, Aurier may have been lucky to escape with just a yellow card for planting his foot on an Apoel player’s ankle but he put some pretty damn decent crosses in. On the 20th minute he received a glorious ball from Winks and played in a decent cross that was just behind Llorente. The Spaniard’s control, swivel and shot was superb. His joy at finally getting that first goal. Good that it was from open play and an opening goal not some Walcott goal – the fourth in a 4-1 victory. Much made of the number of games it’s taken him, well he hasn’t exactly played an awful lot in those, the minutes added up amounted to a few games but then about the amount that Harry Kane doesn’t score in during August.
You just feel Llorente needs game time, while those around him need time to understand how to use his talents for the best. Actually giving him the ball being first and foremost, something which doesn’t happen enough when he does play. But he was the focal point here, back to goal holding the ball up as he did for the second in a one-two with Son. The Korean finish off the move with a beautiful curling shot
You wonder how a front three of Harry Llorente and Son would manage against a flat back ten, when played from the start.
You also wonder how Spurs hadn’t been ahead before Llorente’s opener. A goal mouth scramble from Llorente’s good header, from a free-kick, saw N’Koudou and Sanchez have good chances to open the scoring and their scoring. The former ended up doing so in the second half, in what was his 22nd appearance for the club, his fifth this year. Yeah, it took a deflection but it’s his goal. He tries hard but again gets so little game time. You can’t expect a player that plays so little to be up to speed when he does finally get on.
Finally get on the only other thing of real note in the game, Kazaiah Sterling’s introduction. The 19 year old came off the bench and stood on the touchline for what seemed an age, in fact so long that he probably started to doubt he’d even get on before the final whistle.
Then there was the fuss over Danny Rose and Pochettino’s sideline interaction after the former went off with a head injury that needed some treatment and where Pochettino figured he might as well be subbed for Walker-Peters. Stuff and nonsense.
But does Danny want to be around for what will come for Spurs in the Champions League, or will he be off come the New Year… well, he’s cup tied for this, isn’t he…