Leyton Orient   2   Tottenham Hotspur    4      (Half-time score : 1-1)

Venue : -  Brisbane Road
Wednesday 1st August 2007
Kick Off :  8.00 p.m. (original k.o. 7.45 p.m.)
Crowd :  9,126
Referee :  Danny McDermid (London)
Weather :  -  Warm evening, dry
Teams : - 
Leyton Orient :


Thelwell (c) (Purches 46)
Murray (Palmer 68)

Melligan (Ibehre 63)
Demetriou (Terry 46)

Gray (Cordon 62)
Boyd (Echanomi 80)

Unused subs

Tottenham Hotspur :

Robinson (Cerny 46)

Dawson (Rocha 73)

Jenas (O'Hara 73)
Malbranque (Routledge 46)
Keane (Taarabt 62)

Berbatov (Defoe 46)

Unused subs

Colours : -  (kits courtesy of http://www.colours-of-football.com)
Leyton Orient

Tottenham Hotspur
Scorers : -  
Leyton Orient

Boyd 18
Echanomi 90

Tottenham Hotspur

Keane 18
Keane (p) 56
Defoe 60
Bent 64

Cards : -  
Leyton Orient



Tottenham Hotspur 



Match Report : -  
As useful work-outs go, this was a useful enough one for Spurs.  Four goals, some very good possession football and a chance for all the forwards to get a period of time on the pitch and do what they do best, with it being unusual that Berbatov was the one striker who didn’t get among the goals. 

For the first 15 minutes of this game, Tottenham controlled possession and although the match wasn’t played entirely in the Orient half, the ball found its way heading in that direction for most of the time.  With Steed Malbranque finding space on the left and Phil Ifil pushing up from right back on the other flank, Tottenham looked to expose Orient on the wings.  A couple of times good positions were worked, but the crosses did not match the build-up play.  Jenas slipped a pass between two defenders to leave Bent with a shooting chance from the right side of the box, but his effort was taken early and flew over the top.  The best early chance was a scramble from a corner, when Jenas got a far post effort on target, but keeper Nelson beat it out and then was quickly up to stop Berbatov’s follow-up with his legs. 

The O’s goalie made an even better save, when Malbranque and Paul Stalteri worked a neat move that left the Canadian defender marauding into the box and hitting a shot from close range that Nelson somehow pushed up and over the bar.  Surprisingly, it was Orient who took the lead with their first attack in the 17th minute.  Left back Jason Demetriou received the ball on the left, from where he played a pacy cross into the area and Adam Boyd got to it first, flicking the ball (which may have taken a touch off Dawson) past Robinson.  Some fans around me questioned the Spurs keeper’s role in the goal, but the cross made it easy for the new Orient striker to get power in the header leaving Robbo without much of a chance. 

The lead only lasted for just over 30 seconds, as Spurs went straight down the other end and scored.  Once more, Stalteri played a pass down the line to Malbranque and with Alton Thelwell (Orient captain for the night against his first club) tight at his back, he knocked the ball down the line and left the defender for dead.  Looking up, he played a low cross into the box and Berbatov got a goal bound touch that was stopped by a defender.  The ball rebounded to Robbie Keane, who stuck away the chance from close in at the far post. 

After that Orient tried to play their football, but their passing lacked the accuracy that typified much of Tottenham’s.  With Huddlestone spraying the ball around with imperious ease, Spurs kept the ball moving and kept nibbling away at the O’s midfield and defence.  The home side’s best chances of the rest of the first half came from free-kicks which flew across the face of goal and failed to trouble Robinson.   

As for Spurs, they were content to try and play their way through the Orient side and Huddlestone crashed a left foot shot a foot wide from outside the box and coming up to half time, they were denied a second goal by a linesman’s flag when Jenas dinked a little pass into Bent, who took it down and finished well, slotting under the keeper’s legs. 

The half time break did little to stop Tottenham’s momentum.  Their changes of Defoe on for Bent and Routledge for Malbranque just brought fresh legs into the side, without changing the pattern.  Within nine minutes, a forceful run form our new centre-half Younes Kaboul saw him end it by playing in Darren Bent, who side-stepped a defender and the keeper to shoot at goal, but his effort was blocked on the edge of the six yard box, by Mkandawire, who was the last man.  The ball went out right towards the dead-ball line, where it was chased by Kaboul, who continued his run and as he tried to shield the ball, Murray came in and took his legs from under him to concede a penalty.  It was a bit of an odd one, as Kaboul looked like he was trying to barge the Orient defender out of the way, missed and as Murray fell, he went under Kaboul and floored him.  Anyway, despite much debate, Robbie Keane ran up and with a stutter in his run sent the ball wide of Nelson and in for 2-1. 

Four minutes later and it was 3-1, as Keane nicked the ball off an Orient midfielder’s toe, then Huddlestone’s astute pass found the run of Jermain Defoe, who turned to make himself a little room and then cracked an unstoppable shot past the O’s goalie from just inside the box. 

The lead was extended even further on 65 minutes, when Defoe linked well with Bent, slipping a neat pass through for the £16.5 million man to reach out a leg and dribble the ball past the advancing Nelson and it just ended up inside the right hand post for another goal in his pre-season settling in period.  There was the beginnings of a good partnership between the two England strikers developing, although on occasion, they did pass to where the other one wasn’t. 

By now, Martin Jol had substituted Keano, as he was close to a hat-trick (Ed – has any Spurs player scored a treble under Jol ?).  His replacement was the precocious Adel Taarabt, who went out on the left wing, with Routledge switching to the right.  The Frenchman’s tricks delighted the crowd, as he step-overred to his heart’s content and made the O’s defenders’ lives a nightmare.  He curled a couple of efforts just wide after turning the defenders one way and then another, before Hud once more passed through to Defoe, who was thwarted by Nelson’s legs.  The pairing linked up once more in the 76th minute and this time, Jermain lifted the ball neatly over the keeper and into the net, only to look up to see a flag being waved by the linesman. 

Huddlestone was being urged to shoot at every opportunity, but his late effort was blocked by Mkandawire, who took the sting out of it.  With time ticking away, Orient launched a late flurry, with a cross being headed back towards Cerny by Ifil, but with such power from close in, that the Spurs reserve keeper had to tip it over the bar for a corner to be sure it didn’t end up as something worse. 

As the game entered injury time, Orient came up with a late consolation and it was probably the best goal of the game.  A right wing cross from club captain Richard Purchese was struck first time by Efe Echanomi as the ball came across him and the ball arced over Cerny to bring the final score back to 4-2 as the striker flik-flaked his way off in celebration.

The only drawback was the poor organisation before the game, with little information on the tickets, many fans were in the wrong stand and had to be walked around the pitch to the stand behind the goal.  Initially, Tottenham were to house all their supporters in the West Stand, but demand must have meant they opened up the North Stand to Spurs fans.  The inability to cope with a 9,000 crowd is worrying in this day and age, so the delayed kick off was another irritation, but overall, the side had a tough enough match, with some of the Orient challenges being more than robust.  It will be a taste of things to come for Spurs, I am sure.


Marco van Hip




Reaction : -



A weird incident happened during the game which started when Robbie Keane left the field to be substituted by Adel Taarabt. Looking for someone to take the captain's armband and with Ledley King missing through injury and Paul Robinson already showered and in the stand, he passed the responsibility to Jermaine Jenas ... something he has adopted before.  However, the real oddity arrived just after 70 minutes, when he was then substituted.

Looking around the young team, he picked out Michael Dawson, who has been captain before.  What he hadn't noticed was that Dawson's number was just being held up as Rocha was coming on for him. Options were severely limited now, so JJ passed the armband on to Jermain Defoe.  Putting the armband in place he bent down to kiss it.

Badge kissing is something I deplore, but Darren Bent's reaction of laughing at the new Spurs skipper might have indicated that the chants of "Jermain Defoe, He's a Yiddo" were not far off the mark.

Fifth choice skipper maybe, but perhaps the crowd's response was an indication of his willingness to be part of the squad even though he is no longer first pick for Jol's front line.  I hope so, as we will need a big squad this season if we want to do really well.




Back to homepage