Blistering Spurs Have The Momentum to Make History
After proving they can do it on a cold Monday night in Stoke, Spurs will be hoping that silverware will finally make it back to the Seven Sisters Road.
What a performance. What a result. Last night, Spurs fizzed through a spineless Stoke side to firmly announce their arrival in the title race’s most crucial stage. Two goals apiece from Harry Kane and Dele Alli mean that Spurs closed the gap between themselves and Leicester to just five points, in what has surely been the Premier League’s most unpredictable season.
If statistics are your thing, let’s start there. Spurs have created the most chances, had the most shots on target, scored more and conceded less than any other team in the Premiership. They have the best defence and best attack in a league that boasts World Cup and Champions League winners aplenty.
After a strong start which only saw them lose their first league game in December, they’ve continued to grow in stature throughout the season. Hugo Lloris, now in his fourth year at the club, finally has a defence in front of him that is of a similarly high quality. Fullbacks Danny Rose and Kyle Walker have pummeled the touchlines all season, whilst the iron defence of Alderweireld and Vertonghen has been supplemented ably by Austria’s Kevin Wimmer.
Further forward, Eric Dier seems England’s best hope in defensive midfield for a generation. Dele Alli doesn’t look like he has a weakness, whilst Christian Eriksen and Erik Lamela are beginning to justify the reputations that first brought them to North London in the wake of Gareth Bale’s departure.
Harry Kane, well, what a find. The media and commentariat were just waiting for his halo to fall this season. Michael Ricketts, Francis Jeffers and many other English centre-forwards have looked like world beaters in their first season, only to collapse amidst the weight of expectation and defences who grew wise to their talents. After a slow start that had some beginning to ask those questions, Kane has responded magnificently to score 24 times in the League, 30 overall in a blistering campaign.
It would take a hard heart to deny Leicester a most romantic Championship, but few could argue either that Spurs would be just as deserving. They’ve been so consistent, defying the claims of pundits who had them down as an outside bet for a Champions League place at the beginning of the season. It would be just desserts for Mauricio Pochettino, transforming these flabby underachievers into heavyweight contenders in under two years.
The first week in May increasingly looks like a decisive time in this most refreshing of title races. Provided they come out of home fixtures against West Bromwich and Swansea respectively, Spurs and Leicester will then face daunting away tasks. Tottenham are away at London rivals Chelsea, who will surely have a point to prove after meekly submitting to Manchester City’s searing blitzkrieg at the Bridge. Leicester, meanwhile, go up against Louis van Gaal’s Manchester United. We’ve been waiting for a performance from them all season. After stuttering against West Ham, Leicester will be hoping that this isn’t the day that United remember who they are.
It’s all set up then for a fantastic denouement. After proving they can do it on a cold Monday night in Stoke, Spurs will be hoping that silverware will finally make it back to the Seven Sisters Road.