Kyle REYNISH 46)
Lovel PALMER (18
Steven KINNEY 46)
Bakary SOUMARE 46)
Jeff LARENTOWICZ (c)
Jhon Kennedy HURTADO 46 )
Greg COCHRANE 46)
8 Grant WARD (11
Dilly DUKA 55)
22 Matt WATSON (30
Razvan COCIS 46 [23
Marco FRANCO 77])
Chris RITTER (12
Logan PAUSE 46)
9 Mike MAGEE (54
Benji JOYA 46)
Quincy AMARIKWA (15
Matt FONDY 75)
Harry SHIPP (
Kyle NAUGHTON 46 )
Michael DAWSON (c)
Milos VELJKOVIC (43
Ryan FREDERICKS 46)
Danny ROSE (33
Ben DAVIES 46)
Christian ERIKSEN 46)
6 Younes KABOUL
A 2-0 win over Chicago Fire
rounded off Tottenham's North American pre-season tour, which may
have boosted the coffers by spreading the brand rather than boosting
the odds on Spurs breaking into the top four this season.
With the squad being rotated
and different players being given 90 minutes, while most got 45,
Spurs were playing their third game in a week and while there will
be more of the same to come, these being the first three games, it
was more about getting the rust out of the joints.
Spurs took a fifth minute
lead when goalkeeper Johnson played a pass to Larentowicz, but he
did not realise that Lewis Holtby was closing him down and squared
for Kane to hit a bobbling ball past the keeper into the net from
eight yards out. It was a bit worrying as commentator Kasey Keller
advised us that Holtby had stripped Larentowicz !!
The 25th minute first saw a shot from 25 yards when Watson took a
quick shot when in space and Brad Friedel dived to his right to push
the ball out in front of goal, but luckily there were no red shirts
there to capitalise. At the other end, Kane almost slipped
Townsend through, but the pass was just a little in front of him.
Then, on the half hour, Lamela skipped past a couple of tackles
outside the D and hit a left foot shot across the keeper, but
Johnson dived left to push the ball away. Erik had the keeper diving
the other way as he came in from the right in the 33rd minute, with
the same result.
Fire were awarded a number of soft free-kicks in the Spurs final
third, but their delivery was poor. Spurs had one, which Lamela bent
over the top from the right wing. Tottenham were happy enough
to keep possession to wait for a pass through the Chicago back four,
but they often failed to find their target. Townsend and Kane got
space on the left of the box to play it across, but there were no
black shirts on the end of the passes.
The half ended with Rose picking up a yellow card for a needless
push as the ball ran out on Palmer, a player he had a running battle
with all half.
Half times changes were limited to five for Spurs, while Fire
changed the whole team, apart from Spurs loanee grant Ward, but he
only lasted another ten minutes.
New signing Ben Davies showed he likes to get forward, with a drive
from the left corner of the box that flew over as a challenge came
in. Spurs almost got Capoue away but were pulled back by the ref’s
whistle for a foul on Holtby that earned Hurtado a booking.
Meanwhile, Brad Friedel had to come out to dive on the ball, which
was a little too long for the in-running forward in the 66th minute,
then had to save when Fondy returned a pass from Duka to let him
shoot at goal with 68 minutes gone.
Spurs were picking the ball off well when Chicago went forward, but
the movement going forward was not too good, with few options to
give the ball when we had possession. When Fondy did win the ball on
halfway, they moved forward, but Tottenham’s closing down pushed
them all the way back to their own keeper.
Spurs worked the ball a bit better and Falque played Soldado in on
the edge of the area and his shot was blocked for a corner by
Cochrane’s sliding challenge. A minute later, Falque was robbed of
the ball and Fondy put through, but he took far too long getting his
shot off and Velkjovic blocked the effort from the Fire striker.
Young goalkeeper Luke McGee’s first touch unknowingly started the
move for Tottenham’s second goal. The ball was worked forward from
Dawson and Lennon and Soldado worked a couple of sharp exchange
passes with a through ball that saw the little winger beat Hurtado
to the ball and then go around Reynish to slip the ball into an
empty net and make it 2-0.
Former Spurs keeper Kasey
Keller was the co-commentator and at one stage said he played "202
games for the South London franchise, whose fans were a little over
exuberant". I am sure that Millwall and their following will
be impressed by that !!
It was a nice touch of
Pochettino to give McGee some time on the pitch and will give him a
nice bit of experience for all the time he has been sitting on the
bench this tour.
A minute later, Eriksen almost got onto the end of a long pass from
Naughton, with only a rush out from Reynish seeing the Dane’s
attempted prod past him hit the keeper knees. Fredericks had a run
up the line and his cross almost picked out Soldado at the near post
but a defender got their first. Falque had an injury time shot from
the left, but the goalie saved at his near post with ease before the
last minute passed without incident and the game ended with Spurs 2
and 0 for their three games in North America.
Tottenham’s delivery in from wide positions wasn’t great today, but
they were comfortable throughout and were not really tested by a
side who lost their last game 1-5.
So a simple enough victory with a good run out and no injuries from
the tour with a tightening up at the back in the end, but there was
little threat from the Chicago side. So with Celtic and
Schalke left to play, Spurs are playing OK, with little opposition
to contend with so far, but that will step up with the next two
games. It will make it a light pre-season in terms of playing
time, but more available for the manager to get to know his squad.