New York Red Bulls  1 (1)     
Barclays New York Cup
Wednesday 1st August 2012                              
Venue :  Red Bull Arena, New Jersey, USA
Tottenham Hotspur  2 (0)

Kick off  19:05 local time (00:05 UK time)
Cooper (p) 8 Bale 59
Sigurdsson 64




Crowd :   21,701 Weather :  Warm, dry
Referee :  Mr. N. Bratsis Assistant Referees :  -
- kicked off and played towards the - end in the first half.
New York Red Bulls : kit Tottenham Hotspur : kit
-  Gaudette

-  Lade
-  Conde (-  Keel 46)
-  Holgersson
-  Miller (-  Ruthven 84)

-  Tainio (-  Solli 46)
-  McCarthy
-  Cahill (-  Palsson 46)
-  Lindpere (-  Borrajo 64)

-  Cooper (-  Angulo 86)
-  Le Toux (-  Arteaga 65)

Unused subs: 
-  -
-  -
-  -
-  -
-  -
-  -

    -  Gomes

  -  Walker (  -  Naughton 60)
  -  Dawson (  -  -)
  -  Vertonghen (  -  Gallas 46)
  -  Assou-Ekotto (  -  Bassong 83)

  -  Huddlestone (  -  Jenas 46)
  -  Livermore (  -  Carroll 61)

  -  Lennon (  -  Smith 83)
  Sigurdsson (  -  Kaboul 83)

  -  Bentley (  -  Kane 46)

  -  Bale (  -  Townsend 84)

Unused subs: 
-  -
-  -
-  -
-  -
-  -
-  -

Manager :  Hans Backe Manager :   Andre Villas-Boas
Sponsor :   Red Bull Shirt sponsor :  Aurasma
Kit Supplier :  adidas Kit Supplier :   Under Armour
Match report

As a match this was a little one sided, but Spurs had to show some character to come back from an early goal to win the Barclays New York Trophy - our first silverware of the season !!

The New York Red Bull team featured some familiar names with Teemu Tainio and Tim Cahill (making his debut) in their line-up, with Spurs fielding an unusual team that featured no recognised striker a la Spain in the Euros.  Gareth Bale was the most advanced player and with two wingers and Sigurdsson behind him, the ploy was to push them, up in support.

However, Cahill, so often the scourge of our defence, latched onto a ball over the top of the middle of our defence and Jan Vertonghen bundled him over as he shaped to shoot at Heurelho Gomes.  A penalty was given and perhaps in a  competitive match, the Belgian would have been sent off, but Kenny Cooper stepped up to slot the ball past Gomes from the spot to give the NYRB the lead.

In truth, that was about the last action that Gomes saw, with an easy evening giving him no chance to show AVB what he could do.  Tottenham dominated the rest of the game and held the ball better, especially in the second half.  In the first half, the rush to get back into the game often saw the ball given away.  There were few clear openings, but Spurs forced good saves from Bill Gaudette in the Red Bulls goal.  The keeper tipped over a Bale free-kick and then pushing aside a shot from Tom Huddlestone, after the midfielder had won the ball and played a one-two with Bale. 

The side looked comfortable and the home team even managed to make David Bentley look good, as Spurs probed without any real penetration.  Huddlestone and Livermore sat in front of the back four and tried to start moves from their deep position.

Half time brought some changes with Gallas, Jenas and Kane all entering the play, with Spurs looking even more at ease in the new formation, with NYRB sitting off and making substitutions of their own, with a league game following in a few days time.  Having made a fine reaction save to deny Aaron Lennon a goal from eight yards when Bale's low cross was not cleared, Gaudette had no chance when Gareth rose highest to meet Sigurdsson's corner with a header that beat the goalie and hit the net to make it 1-1 in the 59th minute.  His marker McCarthy failed to get off the ground and it was a free header for the Welshman.

Five minutes later, Tom Carrol and Benoit-Assou Ekotto played passes on the left and Gylfi Sigurdsson took the ball on the left hand corner of the penalty area.  Moving the ball wide of the box and then cutting back inside, he nut-megged Holgersson and with space in front of him, bent a shot past Gaudette into the top far corner of the goal to give spurs what the commentators called !the go-ahead goal".  It was a fine piece of finishing and left the home defence going the wrong way as he turned back inside.

As the game played out and more subs came on, the pattern of Tottenham holding the ball and playing through midfield continued.  Chances continued to be created though and from a corner, Michael Dawson shinned one against the bar, then there might have been a penalty, when Townsend was brought down in the box, but the referee tended to side with the commentators, who always claimed that the Red Bull tackles won the ball, even though it was patently clear they were nowhere near it.

Late in the game, Harry Kane got a shot on target but the goalie save and Townsend was released on the left and over-ran the ball as he homed in on goal.

This was more competitive than the other two matches on American soil, but the opposition was poor and coming in the middle of their season, they had the edge in fitness over Spurs (although they looked the fittest they have done since arriving), but their technical play and their overall effort was a little lacking. 

Still, AVB seems to be getting those who are available into a system he wants to play and maybe when those who are coming back to fitness and Jermain Defoe returns to the squad things will look different, as it will with Modric or his replacements in the team.

On to Watford on Sunday for Lloyd Doyley's testimonial and a more rigorous test of the system in typical English conditions, against a team managed by a typically Italian manager.

Charlie Mason



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