the media barely noticed.
Spurs finally registered a league victory after a fairly barren December that saw just one win, in their first game of the New Year, though beating Leeds didn’t stop the pundits lauded defeated side.
It came as a great shock at the end of the game when Glenn Hoddle gave the man-of-the-match award to Sonny, I thought he’d completely forgotten that Spurs were actually playing, never mind winning 3-0, in a very comfortable performance.
All the talk at the beginning was the amount of goals there was going to be in this game, Leeds being the free scorers and Spurs being capable of the same when Jose lets the handbrake off. They kept at it during the opening half hour but in all honesty the way both teams were playing it had nil, nil written all over it.
Spurs were lacklustre going forward, their best attempt chance coming from Bergwijn, who took the ball and turned perfectly but his finish was that of a player whose confidence is shot. High, wide and not very handsome. Leeds had chance but they aren’t the most accurate of teams in front of goal.
The only hope was that Leeds were gonna be Leeds at the other end and sure enough they were. As great going forward as they are they are a bit of a shambles at the back, with an amazing ability to gift goals. With that Spurs were doing the right thing and not sitting off them but pressing the defence, from that the keeper misplaced his pass out, it wasn’t intercepted by Winks it was kicked straight at him, he did actually manage to pass it forward to Bergwijn who was fouled. The ref pointed to the spot and after VAR it was confirmed. Kane banged home his 16th straight spot-kick.
And the pundits started their usual routine of questioning Spurs and the legitimacy of the goal. The look on Jake Humphrey’s face when BT’s in-house ref said was the right decision, at half-time. It was a narrative that would be returned to later.
They couldn’t argue about the second goal just before the break. More pressing and Hojbjerg wins the ball in the Leeds’ half, with a number of players in front of him. Onto Kane who turned past his defender and from the right put in the perfect ball for Son in the box. The Korean netting his 100th goal for the club, after seeing Kane’s run and knowing exactly where to run, the defenders had a couple of yards on him but he ran between them and left them behind in no time. A beautiful goal.
It pissed on the narrative.
The third came shortly after half-time, Ndombele won a corner, which Son swung over for Toby to nod in. Oh weren’t BT desperate to show how lucky Spurs were to get the goal. What a small distance the ball had crossed the line, unlucky Leeds. Except that when the keeper finally got the ball he dragged into his own net back out Dier was on hand to put it back in… well over the line.
Spurs saw out the game, with Harry Kane getting a whole 5 minutes rest at the end, when he was replaced by Vinicius for that full five minutes of game time, which will do the pair of them the world of good. There was just time for Doherty to pick up his second booking of the game. The look Jose gave him as the right-back stood next to the dugout, well, I’d be happy if I was Aurier. It was the look of a man who was asking if Doherty had a twin, because he wasn’t what Spurs signed from Wolves.
And the media went into full “aren’t Leeds great” mode. Just time for some pearl clutching over three Spurs player partying together over New Year. Lo Celso, Reguilon and Lamela together with their families and Lanzini from Wet Spam. Those that were going overboard on this though seemed to miss all the Spurs and Leeds players mingling, hugging, standing around together at the end of this game… and them doing it at the end of every single game.