Analysis of the goal conceded against West Bromwich Albion

Redknapp got it wrong yesterday – there were some odd selections, particularly at the back. For example, why be so persistent and patient in getting Pletikosa in on loan, and then not play him? Why play Kaboul on the left of the centre back pairing, when Bassong was preferred there last season? Why play Bale at left back when he has looked so good in midfield? And elsewhere in the team – when have we ever seen Pavlyuchenko successfully lead the line on his own?

Despite the selection, we were dominant for the first 30 minutes, keeping possession, looking untroubled defensively, and creating a few openings. Rafael van der Vaart caused problems as a number 10, and linked well with Bale and Modric. We took the lead through a crisp Modric volley, and it looked like we would get another if we kept playing in the same manner. Unfortunately, Modric then took a kick on the same bone that he broke last season, and was forced off – from then, we lost most of our impetus and creativity.

Brunt goal (0:29).

Marc-Antoine Fortuné has the ball on the left, and Gallas moves across to him. We should have adequate numbers back to deal with the situation.

Fortuné forces his way to the edge of the box, with Gallas backing off – he is now in a position where he can’t make a challenge unless he is 100% sure he can get the ball, as he risks giving away a penalty.

Fortuné doesn’t do anything clever – he simply drops the shoulder, and peels off on the outside. Gallas, lacking match fitness, is beaten far too easily for a man of his experience and talent.

Gallas is now forced into making a last ditch challenge, as Fortuné drives the ball towards the near post – he strikes it wel, but is at quite an angle.

Cudicini easily saves the shot, but IMO should get the ball wide for a corner. Instead, it bounces off him awkwardly, and he is forced to scramble to his feet quickly to deal with the loose ball.

Having done so, he doesn’t do enough in this situation in my opinion. With Kaboul correctly choosing to leave this to his goalkeeper (who, obviously, has the advantage over the attacker), Cudicini barely gets off the ground, barely extends his arms, and is beaten to the ball by the sheer desire of Peter Odemwingie (who had an excellent game in general).

Odemwingie simply helps the ball across goal, and it’s now up to Bale to win the battle with Brunt at the far post. Unfortunately, he doesn’t, and it is nodded home.

A scrappy goal, but a goal which summed up how our second half was to go – encouraging West Brom on to us (i.e. Gallas), and a real lack of defensive desire (i.e. Cudicini and Bale).

There were many, many flaws in our performance: Palacios’ constant going to ground (NB: Palacios – 5 attempted tackles, 1 interception vs Mulumbu – 3 attempted tackles, 6 interceptions), and vacating of his post; Pavlyuchenko’s total inability to occupy even one of the two West Brom centre halves; van der Vaart’s inability to impact the game when he didn’t have the ball; and finally (and most importantly in my opinion), the narrowness of the 4-2-3-1 that we attempted – Lennon in particular barely ever going wide or attempting to take advantage of Shorey’s attacking instincts – an area that we really should have looked to exploit. The “average positions” image below illustrates just how narrow we were, with only Bale looking to get to the by-line regularly.

Join the conversation

  1. wankers
  2. When Blunt headed the ball he was in front of Cuducini, and only one defender ahead of him and the goal should have deemed offside, the offside rule requires two defenders to be in front the attacker and the goal keeper usually counts as a defender.
  3. He needs to give Keane another chance, he looked sharp in pre season. I did fear the Van der Vaart signing would make Harry tinker with the formation, he needs to get back to basics against Wolves.
  4. All 3 prem goals that we have conceded this year have been poor, we need a settled defence
  5. Andy you are right but Blunt's right elbow in Bale's face did not help!
  6. i believe that u have a quality side u just last that killer instinct, some of the football u play is quality n i feared the worst after the goal went in but the baggies don't lie down that easy n i thought we were the better side 2nd half n should have won it all but for cudicini. do us a favour n shaft the wolves! up the baggies
  7. Agree with the analysis about the goal but Cudicini made a couple of great stops in the 2nd half to keep Spurs in the game. He's not the best at crosses or anything high in the air, but he has great reflexes. So far this season we have lost 2 points against Man City, 3 against Wigan and 2 again yesterday against West Brom, but at least we got a point, we could have lost that game and the old Spurs would have. Lets see where we are after 10-12 games and hopefully some of our recent injuries may be sorted by then. I do worry about playing away in the CL, started noext Tuesday at Werder Bremen - yesterday in the 2nd half we couldn't keep the ball enough and if we do that in Europe we will get punished. COYS
  8. Anon 10:05,

    Would those be the same basics that lost against Wolves twice last season?

    We can't play with one up top as we still don't have the personnel to do it.

    We can't play 4-4-2 in most games as we're easily overrun. Shit, we were overrun yesterday in the second half with 5 in the midfield.

    There's no way we're going to make the CL next season and it will be purely down to Levy being too tight to buy a half decent striker.
  9. Enfield Baggie here. No way that goal was offside and just for the record two seasons ago Dawson dived rather then being pushed by Bednar. I think your club has a great whinging culture and thats why you miss out on what should be easy pionts against a much smaller clubs such as WBA,Wolves etc.. because when the going gets tough you like to sulk and moan rather then grabbing the game by the scruff of the neck. Good luck in the Champions League though.
  10. Spurs need to get some back bone,it's ok playing pretty football and winning but when you come up against teams like West Brom, Stoke and Wolves,no disrespect but we should be smashing them off the park with that team we put out yesterday,Harry you need to do something I don't know if it's the fitness but some thing ain't right!COYS
  12. It's clear why our defence conceeds goal. Lack of continuity in terms of pairing. It will come together soon.

    Our real problem lies up front. We need goal scorers!
  13. where was corluka in this?
    He was not providing attacking width, over lapping Lennon.
    And for the goal he was no-where. Gallas is filling in for him.
  14. for those who dont know the offside rule, a player is deemed to be offside when the ball is played forward.

    i have to say that every player on the spurs bench would have walked into the albion side and yet in the second half it seemed that spurs couldnt deal with the albion.

    obviously 'arry hasnt yes wasted enough money, yet. ive got some mates who are spurs and just hope that he dont ruin another club.
  15. We moaned for several years about not having a 'left winger' now we do the same about not signing a holding striker.None of our four current strikers can effectively play the role but we have several players who can play second striker.
    Bale seriously at fault for the goal

    We played excellently until Modric was injured and if Lennon had scored, and he should have, the game might have been wrapped up early.

    Gallas is clearly not match fit but I was not that impressed with him yesterday. Kaboul should play right back although he might be more suited to the defensive midfield role.
  16. JimmyG2, Bale could've done better but wasn't Gallas the main culprit.

    I'm not sure that some of you old codgers, who bemoan the fact that Bale is playing from LB understand the modern game.
  17. Andy Girling comment about being offside just sour grapes, you were lucky to escape with a point.
  18. Anon 19:37

    The games the same it's the analysis that's got more complicated.
    Its taken us 50 yrs to get back to the simplicity,fluidity and purity of the 60's Double squad.

    Gallas was the main culprit for the goal but Cudocini and Bale could have retrieved the situation but didn't.
    Bale is a threat wherever he plays but we look sounder defensively when he plays from midfield with Ekotto behind.But it's matter of opinion. in my opinion.
    'Old codger' I may be but I am not fooled by the fancy analysis.
    Football is essentially a fluid game and players have defensive roles and attacking roles which vary as the game progresses.

    I read Zonal Marking but don't always understand it particularly the Chalkboards. Even worse are David Pleat's in the Guardian.

    The ball is a lot lighter though


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