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Match Report: Chelsea 0- Tottenham 0 (Spurs Fan's Perspective)

Monday 26th March 2012
When Spurs made the short journey across London to face Chelsea on Saturday, many Spurs fans were less than optimistic. For over a month, Spurs have been in the mire. This match though, will give them hope. The green shoots of recovery could be seen as Spurs more than matched their rivals. Despite Stamford Bridge being a graveyard for Spurs teams in the past two decades, Tottenham showed no fear, attacking throughout a match that ebbed and flowed. It was fiery and combative as both sides named two defensive midfielders. Spurs certainly showed the greater willingness to get forward in the early stages. Chelsea then took control for a spell. Sturridge looked dangerous, threatening to outpace Gallas and outthink Walker on a number of occasions. His touch let him down more than once though, defusing what could have been some dangerous moments for Spurs. For the remainder of the first half, Spurs went compact. They tightened up in midfield and Chelsea remained unadventurous. As a result, the match lost momentum as time wound its way down. Right before the break, Spurs had their best chance. Van der Vaart forced a good save from Cech and the rebound was saved again before Adebayor headed just over the bar. At that point, Chelsea were glad of the half time whistle, as the Dutchman shook his head in disbelief.

In the second half, Adebayor and Bale were impressive. Both used their pace and close control to break out of the Spurs half and cause Chelsea concern. More often than not though, the support was not forthcoming. Spurs missed the balance that Lennon provides. His pace on the right demands defensive attention and leaves fewer players to mark Spurs' other attacking weapons. Redknapp may have recognised this as he sent on Saha with fifteen minutes to go. His presence forced Chelsea to defend deeper and they never really looked like scoring after that.

Spurs were the better side on Saturday. They achieved their first clean sheet in five league matches and avoided defeat for the second match running. Small mercies perhaps, but with eight games remaining, their Champions League fate is in their own hands. Chelsea and Arsenal both have tough run-ins. On this evidence, Spurs should be capable of at least maintaining their current fourth position, if not pushing on. Spurs weren't great on Saturday, but they were good and they look like they may just be exiting the disastrous slump. An emotional cup-tie and potential Wembley semi-final are also on the horizon for Spurs; whether this is a great, good or even poor season remains to be seen.
Samuel Rooke

Total articles: 19

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