South China  0 (0)     
Premier League
Saturday 20th July 2013                             
Venue :  Hong Kong National Stadium
Tottenham Hotspur  6 (3)

Kick off  11:00 (UK time)
None Ka Kueha (own goal) 12
Dempsey 34
Defoe 45
Defoe 54
Defoe 80
Townsend  87




Crowd :   , Weather :  Dry, humid, with rain in second half
Referee :  Neil Swarbrick (-) Assistant Referees :  -
Fourth Official :  - -
- kicked off and played towards the - end in the first half.
South China : kit Tottenham Hotspur : kit

-  JOEL (-   LIU 46)
 4  Sean Tse Ka KEUNG
-  KWOK (c) (-  CHAN 81)

-  LO (  6  PAVLOVIC 46)
-  LUK (-  LEE Hong Lim 62)
-  NAVES (-  JOAO Emire 81)

29  BARRY (-  LEE Wai Lim 72)

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

  25  Hugo LLORIS

28  Kyle WALKER (16  Kyle NAUGHTON 46)
33  Steven CAULKER
20  Michael DAWSON (c)
  3  Danny ROSE (  -  Zeki FRYERS 68)

  Scott PARKER (29  Jake LIVERMORE 68)

19  Mousa DEMBELE (  6  Tom HUDDLESTONE 68)

  7  Aaron LENNON (37  Andros TOWNSEND 68)
18  Jermain DEFOE
  2  Clint DEMPSEY (46  Tom CARROLL 46)

Unused subs: 
24  Brad FRIEDEL 
  1  Heurelho GOMES

Manager :  - Manager :   Andre Villas-Boas
Sponsor :   - Shirt sponsor :  Aurasma
Kit Supplier :  - Kit Supplier :   Under Armour
Match report

From the marshy wetlands of Wednesday's game to the sandy beach of Saturday at the Hong Kong National Stadium and a different pitch lead to a very different result.
Not that the pitch was entirely responsible for the outcome, but the ball running on the ground, albeit a little bumpily, helped the game flow rather than get bogged down in midfield literally in the rain sodden pitch.

Spurs turned out a strong side to face the local side South China, who are also our partner club in that part of the world. The game was as one-sided as you might have expected, despite the home side holding Manchester City to just a single goal in the first match. It didn't turn out the same way in this game, for third and fourth place, whether the initial match had taken too much out of SC or whether Spurs stepped up their game, but Tse Sean Ka Keung contributed to Tottenham's win with a poor performance that exposed the others in the home side's defence.

And it was the SC number 4 who opened the scoring. Spurs worked a neat move on the left wing, with Dempsey getting to the dead ball line before back-heeling the ball for Rose to put a low cross into the near post where it hit Keung and beat goalkeeper Chunhai at his near post with eleven minutes gone.

Spurs hadn't looked like scoring until then, with only two Demspey shots being blocked, but after the goal, they started using the wings to get Walker and Rose forward to exploit the space in behind the full backs. Sigurdsson was working well in midfield, with some insightful passing and Dembele too with one setting Defoe through on goal, but he was tackled by Joel just as he was about to shoot.

Dempsey's shot into the ground from Walker's cross was blocked and Sigurdsson then played a give and go with the American, but his cross was cleared at the near post. Clint was looking sharp and when Parker released him through the middle of the South China defence, he should have finished it, but his lob went too high as the goalie came out. Defoe was then denied by the keeper at the near post from Rose's low ball in from the left and then the little striker hit the post with a header from Sigurdsson's free-kick.

With Dempsey hitting a shot from 30 yards out, as he does, but going wide, he was in luck in the 34th minute, when Caulker headed the ball away and Defoe got to the ball, then raced past Ka Keung to pull it back into the path of Clint to side-foot the ball in from ten yards out.

Dhiego Martins was the most threatening presence in the SC side, with a weak shot just after Dempsey's goal and another similar effort before half-time, but a minute before the break, Spurs got a free-kick just outside the penalty area. Kyle Walker ran up to strike it well, but it hit the wall. Ka Keung was not alert to that and the ball went past him to where Defoe was lurking near the penalty spot and he tucked it past Chunhai to make the score 3-0 at the interval.

The obligatory changes took place at half-time, but not as many as usual, allowing Spurs to continue their control of the match.

Eight minutes into the half, Danny Rose played  smart through ball for Jermain to run onto, but the South China keeper was out quickly.  In trying to be too clever, he failed to deal with the ball and smacked it against Defoe's back - giving the striker the easy task of tapping it into the empty net as the keeper was left stranded.  a couple of minutes later Chunhai did better to thwart Defoe at the near post, as Rose's low left wing cross came in.  A ball back to Martins gave him the chance to shoot, but he pulled his shot wide in the 66th minute.

The SC keeper once more denied Defoe, when he turned aside the forward's low drive in the 71st minute, but Jermain was not to be denied and in the 79th minute, he finished off a neat move.  Tom Huddlestone played the bal to Gylfi, in the centre circle and his first time ball with the outside of his boot took Ka Keung out of the game and Defoe raced away to slip the ball past the goalie as he came out to make it 5-0.

In the 87th minute, a free kick outside the right side of the box, 25 yards from goal, saw Andros Townsend push his senior team-mates out of the way to take the dead ball kick.  And it paid dividends, with a curling shot around the wall that had Chunhai moving the wrong way and unable to get back to claw it out as it flew into the bottom right hand corner of his goal.

With a couple of minutes left, Hugo Lloris was finally called upon to make a decent stop, with a fling tip wide jumping up to his right to stop Martins' effort going into the top corner and then, in the last minute, a through ball that cut Tottenham open gave Martins the chance for a goal, but with only Lloris to beat, he poked his shot wide with a great chance to hit the target.  He was undoubtedly the most dangerous player that SC possessed, but there was still not the class there to make Spurs pay.

A good run out and a record Asia Trophy victory in the four years it has been running, but the fitness gained ... and the lack of further injuries will perhaps be the most beneficial part of the day's proceedings, because Tottenham learned little about themselves or their ability in match play from this game.

Hollingsworth Morse




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