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"I feel like Strictly Come Dancing judge Len Goodman as I award Spurs a ‘seven’ for their performance at the Etihad on Saturday. That’s the good news. The bad news, Manchester City get a nine, and Sergio Aguero a ten for the way he led Tottenham a dance.
My predictive text keeps trying to make Aguero read Argue. I don’t think there will be any argument among we Tottenham supporters that he is truly a world-class player, and his four goals on Saturday might easily have been six or seven.
Just imagine if he had been in a Spurs shirt. Dream on, baby......"
Norman also announces this week's lucky prize winner and a new teaser, with a self-penned book on offer. See full details here
I get lots of positive feedback on the message board and via social media every week, so rest assured that Norman's articles are always worth a read!
Progress was made by Spurs on three counts today at The Etihad Stadium. Firstly, they kept a clean sheet for longer than the 14 seconds they lasted last year. Secondly, they reduced the losing margin by half. It was a six goal difference last year, and just three this time. Thirdly, they scored a goal. You could add other factors too, because we did manage a number of decent attacks; quickly equalised the first goal, and remained in the game right up until Roberto Soldado took a poor penalty, allowing Joe Hart to make a crucial save after 61 minutes. Had Spurs scored, and equalised, perhaps the game would have turned out differently, but there is no arguing that the best team won. City have now beaten us 15-2 on aggregate in the last three games, and we are just not in the same league as them.
Referee Jon Moss awarded four penalties in total today, two of which were saved, all of which were arguably soft...........
Spurs' inexperience was exploited by a more experienced Norwich side. They showed some good attacking play but the advanced full-backs left the centre-backs exposed. Sonupe's pace upfront drew fouls from Norwich but the referee did not show the yellow card enough for my liking. After a poor first half Spurs' defence improved in the second and that helped with the attacking play. Ogilvie looked better at full back. Maghoma had a tricky start at this level while the rest of the academy players did okay when they came on. It does show that we are a little short of players in the squad with loan moves and international call-ups.
Norwich move up level with Spurs in the table and Spurs will need to improve before their next game which will be against Chelsea at Stevenage on the 27th October.
On a day when, had the result gone the wrong way, Mauricio Pochettino could have been 8 points behind the team he left for Spurs, Christian Eriksen secured the points for the home team with his 40th minute goal. Nacer Chadli might have made the result more secure soon after with a shot which had beaten Forster in the "Saints'" goal, but which rebounded off the far post.
It was a tough game, and Spurs had plenty of defending to do, with Kaboul and Vertonghen resilient, and of course, Hugo Lloris making a couple of crucial saves. Mane also missed a sitter with 7 minutes of normal time remaining.
Spurs started with the same line-up as that which faced Arsenal last week. This was a great fillip for Ryan Mason, who made his full home debut. Mason didn't let the side down either......
Quite why Jose Mourinho let Demba Ba go to Turkey, signing Loic Remy from QPR as his replacement, I do not know. In my match preview, I mistakenly suggested that Ba was on loan, but he is a fully fledged Besiktas player.
Ba had an excellent game, in my view. His hold-up play, speed, movement, anticipation and accurate passing was everything any manager could want in an outfield player. Probably his only fault, and that of his team-mates, was an inability to hit the net on several occasions.
Spurs keeper Hugo Lloris (also captain tonight) will probably win another Spurs Odyssey man of the match vote for at least three excellent and crucial saves, which kept the Turks at bay until Vlad Chiriches gave us one of his clownish moments, committing a stupid handball to concede the penalty which Ba put away clinically...............
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