The third round of the FA Cup is normally a very exciting time in the football calendar with many David versus Goliath games occurring. However, the big dog, Tottenham Hotspur, comfortably breezed into the next round after beating Aston Villa 2-0 at White Hart Lane.
Right from the outset, it was clear to see that Steve Bruce’s side had set up to frustrate this weakened Tottenham side. On most attacks from Spurs, attackers Vincent Janssen, Moussa Sissoko and Heung-Min Son found themselves coming up against six Villa defenders.
The first half was really a tale of two well rehearsed teams who barely made a mistake between them. Neither goalkeeper had many saves to make and even then both keepers looked confident when any danger came towards them.
A very compact and well drilled Villa side seemed a very worthy opponent of this Spurs side, attacks in the first half were hard to come by but in the 71’ minute that all changed. After a period of sustained pressure from the North Londoners, a very well placed N’Koudou ball was expertly headed into the back of the net by a very unlikely source – Ben Davies.
After the first goal, the whole complexion of the game changed, as the Championship side were forced to push out more and try and put the Lillywhites under more pressure. Chances in on goal became more frequent for Tottenham as it looked like a second goal was inevitable. And eventually, on the 80’ minute, Heung-Min Son calmly slotted the ball past Johnstone in the Villa net.
Mauricio Pochettino’s men have now extended their winning run to six since that loss to Manchester United. Spirits should be sky high after this run of results, as Tottenham look forward to their third home game in a row to West Brom.
Between The Sticks –
Michel Vorm: 7/10.
A pretty standard performance was put in by the Dutchman today as not many shots came his way throughout the 90 minutes.
Cameron Carter-Vickers: 8/10.
With this being CCV’s second only start in a Tottenham shirt, he definitely impressed many faces as he calmly dealt with any pressure on the right side of the defence, winning headers and battles all game long.
Toby Alderweireld: 8/10.
Solid performances have become standard for the Belgian defender as he has truly come into his own whilst playing and dominating this back line of three central defenders. Alderweireld was substituted for Kevin N’Koudou in the 71st minute.
Kevin Wimmer: 7/10.
Wimmer was the most attacking defender as he always looked to find the right passing option to start another Tottenham attack.
Kieran Trippier: 9/10.
Another start and another MOTM performance from the newly found attacking wing back in this three at the back formation. Crosses were always expected and delivered perfectly from Trippier from the right of midfield.
Eric Dier: 6/10.
Although Dier did not necessarily have a bad game, he was not a stand out performer as he carried out he duties well while also managing the rest of the team.
Harry Winks: 8/10.
The young Englishman has found his feet in this Tottenham side, establishing himself as a very driven and hardworking ball playing midfielder who was well paired alongside Eric Dier.
Ben Davies: 7/10.
Davies got his first goal in a Lillywhite shirt today, after netting a difficult yet very well placed chance 20 minutes from full time.
Moussa Sissoko: 8/10.
A very willing runner with technical talent is hard to find these days but Sissoko showed off these two attributes as he assisted Son for the second goal of the day. Sissoko was substituted for Josh Onomah in the 85th minute.
Vincent Janssen: 5/10.
Once again, Janssen is proving to us why he is not challenging Harry Kane to a starting position as his lack of mobility was once again very apparent in the game. However, Janssen showed off his fierce presence as he held up possession for most of the 60th minutes he was in the game.
Heung-Min Son: 7/10.
Another goal to add to the Korean’s ever growing tally allowed Tottenham to seal off the game against Aston Villa.
Georges-Kevin N’Koudou: 8/10.
Many supporters wanted GKN to start today but he was only limited to half an hour of football. However, he delivered in them very few minutes, tormenting former Spur, Alan Hutton with his raw pace.
Dele Alli: 7/10.
Today showed how crucial Dele is to the setup of this Spurs side as the shape of the team was changed and almost pivoted around the youngster as soon as he stepped foot on the pitch.
Josh Onomah: N/A.
Onomah only managed to grab 5 minutes of football as he was substituted on for Sissoko on the 85th minute.
Man Of The Match:
Kieran Trippier is awarded the MOTM award for his second game in a row after a very impressive attacking performance was put in by him. Crosses are one of Trippier’s strong points and he exploited this from the right side of the field against Jordan Amavi and from the corner kicks that were awarded to Spurs.
West Bromwich Albion at home in the Premier League. Saturday 14th January. Kick off at 12:30.