Sunday, April 01, 2012
Tottenham 3 Swansea City 1
Spurs moved level on points with Arsenal following their win over Swansea. In an entertaining game, Swansea drew level in the second half but Spurs regained control with two headed goals from Emmanuel Adebayor.
Tottenham Hotspur 3 Swansea City 1
Scorers: Van der Vaart, Adebayor (2) Sigurdsson
Team: Friedel; Walker, Kaboul, Gallas, Assou-Ekotto (Rose); Van der Vaart (Livermore), Parker, Sandro (Lennon), Modric, Bale; Adebayor Subs: (unused) Cudicini, Saha, Defoe, Nelsen
Spurs were comfortable winners over a Swansea side who have been impressive in recent away matches, winning four times in the League since January. Both sides looked to play passing football but Spurs worked hard and often the visitors gave the ball away in dangerous positions, putting themselves under additional pressure. Gareth Bale was a constant problem to Swansea and especially in the second half after they had equalised. It was from a period of sustained pressure led by Bale that Spurs went ahead and added a third.
Harry Redknapp sent out the same team which had been so impressive in their draw with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge last weekend. Brad Friedel returned, as did Younes Kaboul and William Gallas in central defence while Sandro replaced Jake Livermore who had played in midweek against Bolton in the FA Cup. Aaron Lennon returned to the bench after a period out through injury.
Swansea started brightly with good possession but Spurs worked hard to close them down and restricted them in any serious attacking threat. Gradually, Spurs started to make greater use of their possession with their passing being more accurate. Luka Modric linked well with Emmanuel Adebayor who set up Rafael Van der Vaart but his shot was deflected wide. Swansea responded well with the former Spurs player, Wayne Routledge, shooting wide. Gareth Bale was beginning to cause problems on the left and his cross to the near post was touched wide by Adebayor.
On nineteen minutes, Modric sent Bale free on the left and his cross to Adebayor was cut out by a defender but it fell to Van der Vaart to shoot from the edge of the penalty area giving Vorm no chance. Spurs continued to be the more dangerous in attack and from a corner Kaboul's header was well saved by the goalkeeper. Again Swansea responded with a header over from a corner, showing that they could pose a threat if Spurs lowered their standards.
In the final quarter of an hour to the interval, Spurs had a number of attempts on goal without troubling the goalkeeper - twice Bale shot over after good link up play and then in the last minute Modric shot past the post.
Early in the second half, Sigurdssen warned Spurs with a great shot that forced Friedel into a wonderful save at full stretch. Then after fifty four minutes he did score, his sixth goal in Swansea's last five away matches. Swansea deserved their goal for their hard work and passing and for a time they took a measure of control but then Spurs regained their momentum with Bale creating problems for the visitors' defence. Following patient work and passing by Spurs, Bale put in a cross to the near post but Van der Vaart's header was saved by Vorm. Then Bale had a shot saved from twenty yards and following a good forward run by Kaboul, Adebayor's weak shot was saved.
Spurs were gradually building up the pressure as Bale, on the left, took the opportunity to run at the defence and put in a number of dangerous crosses. From one, as Adebayor waited, a defender cleared for a corner which Bale headed towards goal but it was cleared for another corner. Again, Van der Vaart took the corner, and this time he found Adebayor who rose above the defence to head home and Spurs were ahead after seventy three minutes. It was the first goal Spurs had scored from 134 corners in the League - an amazing statistic.
Spurs continued to be the more threatening and could have added further goals but it wasn't until four minutes from time that following a run and shot by Bale, that was saved, the ball went out to Aaron Lennon and his cross was headed home by Adebayor. In added time Kaboul put in two blocking tackles to deny Swansea but Spurs had secured their first win in six Premier League games.
Spurs maintained their undefeated home record against Swansea, having won the last fourteen matches between the clubs at White Hart Lane. More importantly, for the current team, they are level on points with Arsenal and five points clear of both Chelsea and Newcastle United. Sunderland await at the Stadium of Light next weekend.