Davinson Sánchez breaks Watford’s resolve with 96th-minute Spurs winner | Premier League

New yr, new daybreak? Because it turned out, not fairly. For a very long time, this had threatened to be a primary clear sheet for Watford beneath Claudio Ranieri, however Davinson Sánchez’s injury-time header ensured it was not. Watford have gone by way of 5 managers since they final saved a Premier clear sheet and it’s that truth that will relegate them.

So this was not a second in historical past, and with out that there will probably be little or no to maintain the reminiscence of the sport alive. It appears unlikely that misty-eyed followers of both aspect will ever give a nonentity of a recreation a second thought. If that is ever proven on a nostalgia channel in three many years time, it might solely be as a result of some apocalyptic occasion has created a cultural desert of beforehand unimagined barrenness.

For Watford, six factors in 11 video games since Ranieri took over shouldn’t be a vastly optimistic stat. For the Italian, just about all that may be mentioned is that his win proportion is increased than it was throughout his disastrous stint answerable for Fulham – though something however a win at Newcastle in a fortnight would change that. Whereas there have been the outstanding victories over Everton and Manchester United, it’s very arduous to argue that there was an enchancment since Ranieri changed Xisco Muñoz initially of October.

From a clear sheet, although, may maybe have grown perception – and there had not been a lot of that at kick-off. Quite there was a way for a lot of the primary half of an acceptance of destiny, one thing encapsulated by the sight of Harry the Hornet forlornly banging a drum within the nook to normal indifference. Maybe the a whole lot of empty seats have been down primarily to Covid, the problems of festive journey and new yr hangovers, however it might’t assist that this Watford supply so little incentive to make an effort.


Maybe that’s unfair. Watford’s attacking ventures have been restricted, however there was a minimum of resistance, even when that consisted largely in merely being, present in a comparatively organised 4-4-2. However time and again possession was wasted. Clearance after clearance went to a Spurs participant or out of play. Cross after move was misplaced. Solely after half-time, after the introduction of João Pedro and his direct operating was there a way that Watford may bother Spurs. And the outcome was that Spurs saved coming in wave after wave. Maybe this was defiance nevertheless it was the defiance if an unremarkable sandstone cliff towards the ocean: ultimately erosion was all the time going to take its course.

Claudio Ranieri remains without a clean sheet as Watford manager
Claudio Ranieri stays and not using a clear sheet as Watford supervisor. {Photograph}: Dave Shopland/Shutterstock

Not that Tottenham provided an enormous quantity. There have been a few long-range efforts, from Pierre-Emile Højbjerg and Sergio Reguilon, and Harry Kane fired simply huge after Imran Louza had slipped, however for essentially the most half there was huffing and puffing and passes fired simply too far in entrance of Emerson Royal.

Tottenham, like so many high-pressing groups, are at their finest towards sides who come out at them, which Watford, with their two banks of 4 dropped deep, merely didn’t do. This was the identical because the Southampton recreation, as Spurs lacked the inventive spark to interrupt by way of towards more and more dogged opponents. Pressured to attempt to play their manner by way of an opponent, Tottenham regarded a bit one-paced and missing in creativeness. There was the odd twist from Son Heung-min however this was a recreation of little or no subtlety or high quality.

And that maybe suggests the bounds of this squad. For all Tottenham have improved beneath Antonio Conte, for all they’ve a goal and a drive, for all they give the impression of being higher organised and extra motivated, they continue to be the identical group of gamers, and they’re a bunch that, because the departure of Christian Eriksen, has lacked a lot in the best way of magic or unpredictability. Tanguy Ndombele has at occasions maybe steered he may present it, however Conte made pretty clear this week that he’s no fan: Ndombele’s unpredictability is the flawed form of unpredictability.

The Fiver: join and get our day by day soccer electronic mail.

If there was enchancment after half-time, it was modest, though a wise Kane flip and shot did a minimum of draw a save from Daniel Bachmann, who then reacted sharply to push away a close-range Son effort. However a delay whereas a fan obtained medical therapy maybe allowed Spurs to regroup. Definitely they appeared sharper after the restart and when Son was tripped huge on the left, he whipped within the free-kick for Sánchez to the touch house.

Show More

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button