Tottenham vs Man United

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Post by CBarca Sat 19 Jan 2013 - 23:45

This is an Official Match Thread presentation brought to you by CSpurs Laughing

Tottenham vs Man United 6f6

Time: I don't know, it's 10:00 AM my time so I think it's like 4:00 PM over there or something.
Date: January 20th, 2013
Venue: White Hart Lane
Prediction: Tottenham 2-1 Manchester United ( smoking )

Background:
Tottenham vs Man United Article-2210378-1544C249000005DC-959_634x418

Tottenham will be without the immense midfield partnership that has served them so well this year, a partnership that dominated Man U. at Old Trafford (well, until we shut up shop), and a stronger partnership than we've had in years. Sandro suffered a knee injury at Loftus Road against QPR and will be out for the rest of the season. Dembele and Sandro will most likely be replaced by a new partnership, Dembele and Brave Scotty Brave Scotty Brave Scotty Parker. Can Brave Scotty Brave Scotty Brave Scotty Parker do it? CAN HIS GRIT AND STEEL GET THE JOB DONE?!

In addition, Tottenham will be without Adebayor, who is participating in the African Cup of Nations. Defoe will have to lead the way tomorrow, as he is the only available striker.

Tottenham vs Man United 235432hp2
This is not the time to clap, Sandro
Tottenham vs Man United Scott-Parker_2733080
Don't worry guys, I got this

It was an edge of the seat thriller earlier this season vs Man United. With Spurs supporters on edge about AVB after an unimpressive beginning to the season, Tottenham managed to beat Man U at Old Trafford for the first time in 23 years thanks to goals from Vertonghen, Bale and Dempsey. Tottenham have done very well since then, but so have Man U, and it will be as close and nervy affair as the first game between these two was earlier on in the season.

Tottenham vs Man United 3008888123
What it looks like to win at Old Trafford for AVB

PREDICTED LINE UP: Due to Adebayor being gone, I predict a 4-2-3-1 from AVB, the same formation that saw us beat Man U earlier this season. I see Defoe being the lone striker, and I see Brave Scotty Brave Scotty Brave Scotty Parker replacing Sandro in the midfield doing all of the dirty work, hopefully allowing Dembele the freedom to roam. It's been long enough since his injury that I think AVB will start BAE against Man U, and the rest of the line up is fairly self explanatory. Dempsey will be in as he was commonly when we played the 4-2-3-1, and he started and scored vs Man U, so I could see AVB wanting him in there again. Without further ado, my starting line up for tomorrow's cracking game at White Hart Lane.

----------------Lloris-----------------
--Walker--Dawson--Vertonghen--BAE--
--------Parke r-----Dembele-----------
--Lennon-----Dempsey---------Bale---
--------------Defoe------------------

Tottenham vs Man United _63200578_mmftbavbint

How AVB and all of us will look after we are victorious over Manchester United.

COYS! cheers


Last edited by CBarca on Sun 20 Jan 2013 - 0:17; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Parker being replaced with brave scotty parke r messed my line up...up... loool)
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Post by RealGunner Sun 20 Jan 2013 - 0:07

6-6 with 3 red cards each hmm
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Post by CBarca Sun 20 Jan 2013 - 0:15

*le me waiting for someone to compliment what a fantastic match day thread this is.

Rolling Eyes

Oh I forgot to mention. Chelsea and Arsenal are also playing tomorrow. If either one drops points it's good for us. If they both drop points, even better IMO.

Pls draw or Arsenal loss.
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Post by RealGunner Sun 20 Jan 2013 - 0:46

Fantastic preview man, First in the tottenham section by you :bow:

Will be a very interesting match up between Rvp n Rooney vs Caulker-Vertonghen

Bale vs Rafael another good duel.

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Post by The Sanchez Sun 20 Jan 2013 - 2:22

The gif made me continue to read Laughing :coffee:
RG, if you really think 6-6 with 3 red cards then think again... Clubber Unless Howard Webb is refereeing...
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Post by CBarca Sun 20 Jan 2013 - 6:38

I'll make more previews for sure, and they'll be a lot better than this one lol. This one was me taking a bunch of pictures and mashing them together Laughing

My honest opinion?

The game will be very hard. If someone offered me a draw right now I would bite their arm off for it. If we get a win, it will be epic. I don't even know the last time Tottenham has done the double over Man Yoo.

I think it can be done, but I'm not expecting a win.... I'm really not, in my honest opinion.
RealGunner wrote:Fantastic preview man, First in the tottenham section by you :bow:

Will be a very interesting match up between Rvp n Rooney vs Caulker-Vertonghen

Bale vs Rafael another good duel.


Do you think Caulker will start over Dawson? Is he injured, I don't remember him being injured and it seems like AVB actually prefers Dawson at this point. It could be either, though.

Bale vs Rafael will be crucial. Bale will HAVE to put in a defensive shift this game- which is something he hasn't always done.
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Post by The Sanchez Sun 20 Jan 2013 - 7:12

In honesty, I don't remember either that Dawson is injured and I would take him over Caulker any day when you play a good side like Man United.
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Post by CBarca Sun 20 Jan 2013 - 7:25

Caulker is a great lad and I think he'll be one of our best CB's for a while and I hope we keep him for a long time. Very talented kid.

However!

He's been at fault for a couple goals this season (including the second goal in that heartbreaking game vs Everton), and it's clear that while he's been great for us, he is just a young kid and he makes mistakes sometimes. I trust 29 year old experienced captain Dawson over Caulker in games like this. Give Caulker the games vs Aston Villa and Reading or something, but against Man U? I think Dawson's experience, leadership, and commanding attitude is our best fit for this game. I think him and Vertonghen make a great CB pairing, and my preferred pairing when going against the likes of Man U.

Although it may be early yet, I do trust BAE at LB. I'd rather have Vertonghen in the middle for Spurs, and I don't trust Naughton out on the left, so I'd prefer our natural LB in the form of BAE plays.

Defoe didn't score but was fantastic against Man U at Old Trafford. He'll be the only striker tomorrow (unless for whatever reason we go for a 4-4-2 with Dempsey alongside him or trailing behind), we need him to perform. Hopefully he's on target tomorrow, we need him to be.

We'll need Brave Scotty Parker to be tight on Rooney, who will probably drop deep like he has done the majority of this season.

Honestly I think how Brave Scotty Parker does this game will be a huge factor. Last game we had Sandro and Dembele bossing it, able to soak up the pressure from Man U and take midfield dominance for large portions of the game (specifically the first half). That was the reason we did so well IMO. We need a replica of that midfield performance if we want any chance to win.
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Post by nh01 Sun 20 Jan 2013 - 12:02

Dawson is going to get overwhelmed by RVP.
Daws is good for the big typical english forward (crouch, holt etc) but struggles against the trickier ones.

Gallas kept rvp in his pocket at OT
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Post by CBarca Sun 20 Jan 2013 - 15:27

Gallas rofl Laughing
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Post by CBarca Sun 20 Jan 2013 - 18:55

DEEMMMMMPPSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEYYYYYYYYYYYYY

GEEETTTTTTTTTTTTTT IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN
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Post by CBarca Mon 21 Jan 2013 - 0:30

All I have to say right now is that it was a great game and I'm proud of my Spurs. Outplayed Man United and with some better finishing would have won 3-1 tonight. We need a top class striker, that's for sure, but outplaying Man United for the second time this season?

AVB you genius :bow:

A bit disappointed to only garner 1 point out of the 3 we really should have gotten, but hey like I said, if someone offered a draw beforehand you bet your shiny penny I would have taken that and ran with it.
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Post by CBarca Mon 21 Jan 2013 - 3:11

Oh yeah, F what anybody said, anyone with a brain saw Lennon was the best player on the park by a mile.

Lennon was outstanding today.
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Post by CBarca Mon 21 Jan 2013 - 6:00

Making it 5 posts in a row banana

Zonal marking came out with their report. Read it!!!

Zonal Marking: United stop Bale but leave gaps elsewhere

Tottenham finally managed a last-minute equaliser, after constant pressure throughout the majority of the game.

Andre Villas-Boas used Scott Brave Scotty Parker in the holding midfielder role, in place of the injured Sandro, who is expected to be out for the rest of the season. With Emmanuel Adebayor at the Africa Cup of Nations, Clint Dempsey played just behind Jermain Defoe, while Jan Vertonghen’s illness meant he was only on the bench.

Sir Alex Ferguson surprisingly used Phil Jones – effectively in place of the injured Ashley Young when compared with last week’s game against Liverpool, although this obviously meant a change in formation. Wayne Rooney was fit again, but only on the bench after good performances from Shinji Kagawa and Danny Welbeck last weekend.

Dempsey’s late equaliser changed the scoreline and the narrative, but it shouldn’t change analysis of the game – United defended well for long periods, but invited too much pressure and failed to counter-attack effectively.

United formation

The first key issue was Ferguson’s formation. With the versatility of Kagawa, Jones, Welbeck and Tom Cleverley, this could have been a 4-4-2, a 4-4-1-1, a 4-3-3, a 4-2-3-1 or a 4-4-2 diamond. In the end, it was more or less a 4-2-3-1, although because United spent long periods without the ball, and the wide players dropped back, it was also frequently a 4-4-1-1. Kagawa stayed central, behind Robin van Persie.

Welbeck started wide-right, with Cleverley playing an odd, left-sided shuttling role – part-central midfielder, part-left-sided midfielder. Welbeck was possibly regarded as the better player to help out against Gareth Bale, although Cleverley’s narrowness gave Kyle Walker the chance to get forward – Kyle Naughton, on the other side, is less of a threat because he’s very right-footed.

Whether there was any logic behind Cleverley and Welbeck’s switch, after around 15 minutes, is difficult to say. However, it clearly had an important impact upon the game – van Persie’s opener came after Welbeck had dribbled in from the left, spread the play to the right, then Cleverley had sent a fine, right-footed cross to the far post. It’s difficult to imagine the goal would have occurred had the two wide players not swapped.

United v Bale

Once the formations had been deduced, the key issue was how United tried to stop Gareth Bale. Tottenham had beaten United earlier in the season following a fine display of direct dribbling – and while Vertonghen and Mousa Dembele had contributed to that, Bale was clearly the man Ferguson wanted to stop.

Indeed, United’s whole approach was geared to prevent Tottenham breaking forward into space quickly. Gone was the high pressing, as seen against Liverpool last week, and instead United sat deep in two banks of four, staying compact and allowing Spurs to dominate possession.

As for Bale – his threat was the reason for Phil Jones’ involvement. As I wrote here for the Guardian:

Jones sat patiently in front of the defence, right-of-centre, always in a position to help Rafael da Silva deal with Bale. The Brazilian has fared well in one-against-one situations against the Tottenham winger over the past couple of seasons – Bale score at Old Trafford earlier in the season, but this came when the Welshman charged directly at the centre of United’s defence.

Jones’s positioning here prevented that possibility, as he subtly ushered Bale down the flank, where Rafael’s good defending meant it took Bale an hour to deliver a decent cross. As Bale became frustrated at his lack of space, he wandered into the centre of the pitch, away from both Jones and Da Silva.

That, in itself, was evidence that United’s approach had been successful: Bale’s experiments with a central role last season came after he complained about being double-marked, especially in home games, but he does not possess the all-round ability to thrive from a starting position in the centre, particularly as United remained so deep and compact.

Dempsey

Inevitably, such a focus upon one man meant United were vulnerable to the movement of others. With Jones playing almost as an auxiliary right-back at times, and Michael Carrick a little unsure of his positioning in the first half (he prefers to play right-of-centre), Dempsey got too much space between the lines, forcing Carrick into a rash tackle and a rare booking. United never truly worked out how to cope with Dempsey – as last week’s second half against Liverpool showed, United’s centre-backs are reluctant to come out of the defence to meet a deep-lying forward, for fear of leaving their centre-back colleague exposed one-against-one versus a quick player.

The way the American wandered through the United defence in the second half – seemingly surprising himself by getting into a one-on-one with David De Gea before poking the ball at the goalkeeper – was a good example of United being overly concerned with Bale. Nemanja Vidic, the left-sided centre-back, was dragged all the way over to the opposite side of the pitch to track a run from Bale that wasn’t particularly dangerous. Dempsey waltzed through, and should have scored.

Lennon

The other main threat was Aaron Lennon. The right-winger has been one of Tottenham’s star performers this season, and in concentrating so much attention on Bale, United left Lennon free. Patrice Evra twice fouled him in the first half, leading to a yellow card, and there was one incident where Lennon dribbled inside into a huge space in the centre, because United were so tilted towards the opposite flank.

In the second half Lennon stepped up his game. Evra stood off, and Lennon came deep, turned and dribbled dangerously – substitute Wayne Rooney was the second man to be booked for fouling him. His end product was good – he set up Defoe for the chance that forced Rio Ferdinand to make a fine block, and would later provide the pass for Dempsey’s equaliser. Welbeck, when moved to the left of midfield, did a decent defensive job on Walker – it was simply Lennon leading the fight solo.

Lennon received the ball much less frequently than Bale, but as he was given more freedom, he was far more creative.

United breaks?

Although United were minutes away from recording a clean sheet, their defence had been breached frequently enough for De Gea to be called into action multiple times. It was clear their lack of possession was influenced by the fact they didn’t want to move up the pitch and concede space in behind, but why did they offer so little counter-attacking threat? Just two shots on target is their poorest tally of the season, and completely at odds with their away performance at Chelsea, for example, when they broke superbly down the right.

There were a couple of factors here, ranging from a relatively unspectacular passing display from Carrick, who focused predominantly on his defensive work, to some underhit final balls and some lazy positioning from van Persie, who strayed into an offside position twice when United did break down the right. But the lack of natural wingers was surely a factor – Young and Antonio Valencia were both key players in what seemed Ferguson’s ‘big game XI’ at one point earlier this season, and both have the ability to carry the ball forward at speed. With Young injured, Valencia out of form and Nani out of favour, Ferguson didn’t have that type of player on the pitch, and the juxtaposition with Lennon was telling.

There was little action from the benches. Villas-Boas called for Benoit Assou-Ekotto at left-back – at least he’s on his natural side, unlike Naughton – which prompted Ferguson to call for Valencia, as a more natural wide man than Cleverley. Rooney replaced Kagawa – United’s passing quality seemed to drop, although this was partly because Tottenham’s momentum was gathering anyway.

Conclusion

United were close to holding out – but even if they’d have kept a clean sheet, it would still have been fair to acknowledge they invited a huge amount of pressure. That was largely deliberate, of course, but the fact United were unable to break frequently enough to provide a consistent goal threat – or to force Villas-Boas into leaving players in defensive-minded positions – should be a concern.

But Lennon’s impact was possibly more interesting – his end product can be inconsistent, he should score more, and when both are at their best, Bale is clearly the better player. But not to the extent that United’s strategy suggested today, and future opponents should be careful not to allow Lennon such freedom.
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