Spurs toast the Clarets at Christmas
Written By: Robert Halter
Tottenham Hotspur had won their last five competitive home games against Burnley, with Spurs having their final match before Christmas at White Hart Lane. In the second minute, the Lilywhites pressed with an exchanged pass between Danny Rose and Harry Kane, before Dele Alli fluffed his lines with a miss timed strike at goal. On seven minutes, Kane broke down the left, before hitting a low drive past the right post. Three minutes later, a first time effort by Christian Eriksen bobbled off Michael Keane, as the ball went behind for a corner, and Eriksen went close again with a right footed shot that missed to the left through an assist by Rose following the corner. But the Clarets responded in the eleventh minute with a low cross by Stephen Ward, and from close range, Andre Gray fired the ball at Hugo Lloris, who scrambled the shot away. Thirteen minutes was unlucky for Spurs, as Alli struck the outside of the right post from a knock on by Victor Wanyama through an Eriksen corner. In the sixteenth minute, from an assist by Kyle Walker, a snap shot by Harry Winks, was pushed away by a Burnley block from Tom Heaton. But it was the Clarets that took a shock lead on twenty one minutes from a mistake by Walker, when Scott Arfield created space in the box for George Boyd, whose shot rebounded off Mousa Dembele in the area, and Ashley Barnes, poked the ball into the net. But the Clarets lead was short lived as within six minutes, Alli was on the score sheet, as he drove the ball into the bottom right corner with a left footed shot, from a delivery by Walker. In the thirty third minute, from a neat touch by Walker, a chip by Alli went over the top into the crowd behind the goal. Three minutes later, after collecting a pass by Rose, the ball was turned past the left post by Dembele. In the forty first minute, a defensive stop with the inside leg of Heaton, fended away a low strike by Kane, who latched onto a through ball by Alli, who had been played forward by Eriksen. Just before the break as Rose’s cross, cannoned off the head of Keane, a strike by Wanyama from outside the area, went straight back to Heaton. In the fiftieth minute as Dembele pulled the trigger, a bullet by Eriksen, snapped onto the top of the outside netting of the frame of the goal. In the fifty fourth minute from a delivery on the left by Rose, the ball was headed into the reaches of Heaton at the centre of the box by Eriksen. On the hour mark from a Ward cross, a miss guided header by Barnes, was comfortably caught by Lloris. But a minute later, in the opposing end, from a pull back by Dembele, a curling strike by Alli, bent over the upright. Spurs then replaced Dembele with Moussa Sissoko but the Lilywhites continued to press through Rose and from outside the area, Eriksen swivelled and turned before unleashing a strike that Heaton scrambled away, before Ben Mee cleared the danger. In the sixty ninth minute, when Eriksen cleared the path for Alli, he fired straight down the middle at Heaton. But Wanyama was the driving force to put Spurs in top gear, as Rose raced into the area to motor the ball into the top left corner, with seventy one minutes played. Another Mauricio Pochettino change saw Alli taken off for Heung-Min Son. After a foul by Rose on Matthew Lowton, from a direct free kick by Heaton, Spurs failed to clear their lines, as Scott Arfield put the ball over. On seventy six minutes, Son drove the ball wide to the right from an assist by Sissoko before Rose was replaced by Ben Davies. In the next three minutes, Kane put the ball over through a cross on the right by Walker. Then Sean Dyche made a late Clarets change of Sam Vokes for Barnes. After Davies fired high and wide from a Kane assist, Burnley made further substitutions with Michael Kightly for Boyd and Steven Defour for Dean Marney. On eighty seven minutes, Davies teed up Son, but Heaton stood his ground to block the shot. After Vokes failed to get a touch to Gray’s delivery, Burnley lost again away with no wins on the road while Tottenham Hotspur stayed unbeaten at home in 2016.