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City 0 - Spurs 1

Eastlands

20.00GMT

Attendance: 47,370

Spurs Win Breaks Blue Hearts

Tottenham Hotspur qualified for next seasons Champions League at the expense of Manchester City, they clinched the remarkable feat with a Peter Crouch goal earning a 1-0 victory away at Eastland`s.

Champions League football, the pinnacle, the holy grail of club football. For both club`s their hard working, energy sapping season came down to one fixture, such a monumental occasion that would have the world`s greatest players quivering in fear. The top four monopoly of Chelsea, United, Arsenal and Liverpool was about to be breached, Liverpool had slipped up dramatically and it was up to either Spurs or City to earn their coveted place. Despite all the ups and downs the clubs will have endured; manager removals, disappointing derby defeats and player sales today could have avenged all misery.

For Tottenham, this was already an unbelievable season, their pre-season goal would have probably involved a fight for Europa League football, but they have far surpassed their expectations. Defeating title challengers at the top of their game, spending less money in comparison to their competitors and having key players sidelined, Spurs had worked their magic to end up in the hunt. In Contrast, Manchester City could have perhaps been excused for believing this was the year, the money was spent, the players were brought in and all the talking and playing had come down to a home fixture where they could seal their own fate. The pundits early season favourites to break the monopoly had come so close.

The match lived up to all the hype, with so much depending on this fixture it was only fitting the team who deserved the glory, the side who didn`t "bottle it" would end up victorious. For once a poor refereeing performance didn`t crush hearts it was instead the opponent`s superiority, even though it was marginal it was still apparent. Spurs have a solid nucleus to their side, players performing at their highest potential, not guilty of lack of effort and a manager who can certainly bring out the best in his side. We were slightly unfortunate tonight in the fact we hadn`t played poorly, we didn`t turn in a performance that would usually end in defeat, but we had come up against fierce opponents. Any mistake would be punished, a lack of effort would have been seized upon and chances would have been taken.

The score-line 1-0 slightly flattered ourselves, Tottenham were outstanding and only their profligacy in front of goal kept us in the game. We had chances ourselves but none as clear cut as the away side.

City had started the evening brighter, there was a certain spark and determination to end all our previous failures. Our football was endearing, we were quick, looking energetic and playing with flair. Tevez looked like a man possessed early on, skipping challenges with ease but failing to take the initiative. Bellamy was proving a nemesis and Johnson was silkier than ever.

However, Tottenham were solid, they don`t give goals away and something spectacular was needed to break down the resistance of Gomes, Dawson, King and Assou-Ekotto. They also had a target man willing to chase down, jump bravely into tackles and put his head where it hurts. That man, Crouch, had a great chance to score the first, his persistence allowed him a march on Kompany where he bundled a header onto the post.

The urgency had to be with ourselves, a win was needed and this allowed Tottenham`s pace and creativity to take us on, on the counter attack. The ball would be lumped to Crouch where 90% of the time he would either win the ball himself or create a chance for his team-mate.

Johnson's well struck shot allowed us to believe we were in the ascendency but it was extremely frightening how dangerous and suspect we looked when facing a rampaging attack.

Our attacking looked like gaining rewards, the numbers were available but we couldn`t quite muster the intelligence and decision making that was needed. The longer the game progressed the more Tottenham were causing us problems. With Crouch`s header and Bale`s shot coming close in the first half, it was Defoe`s turn to be denied, this time by a fantastic Fulop save, the loaned keeper also had to be at his best to prevent Crouch scoring his second header. Nevertheless, Fulop could only do so much and after thwarting another attack Crouch was on hand to pick up the rebound and head home. The travelling fans were sent delirious, it was only a matter of ten minutes now until they secured the victory and Champions League football.

It was deserved, our inconsistent all season has let us down, but fifth should not be taken lightly. We have drastically improved but Spurs have probably been the better team over the season and the table doesn`t lie. This was an extremely hard outcome to swallow, the fans and players looked crushed but the focus now has to be on improving on this milestone next season.

Star Player

Fulop- It speaks volumes for your keeper to be man of the match, but he was. He kept us in the game for so long preventing great chances for Spurs. Distribution needs improving though.

Player Ratings


Fulop-8

It speaks volumes for your keeper to be man of the match, but he was. He kept us in the game for so long preventing great chances for Spurs. Distribution needs improving though.

Zabaleta-7

Another energetic display, he was often left alone in tough situations but gave it his best for 90 minutes. Some really good defensive work and decision making.

Toure-6

Crouch was obviously a tough competitor with his size, but he had the better of both Centre backs. Toure provided strong tackling and good heading when needed though.

Kompany-7

VK had the best of Defoe and endured a really good battle with Crouch. Another good performance.

Bridge-6

Proved sturdy competition for a very quick winger in Lennon. He tackled well and helped going forward as much as possible.

Johnson-6

Skilful in parts and he created good opportunities. I feel he is unfortunate to make way every occasion.

De Jong-8

Battled very hard again. Some people don't understand the ground he covers and how much he prevents his opponent playing. Like he didn't give Milner a sniff he kept Modric quiet. He is a defensive midfielder and does his job superbly.

Barry-6

Was reasonably steady till he was removed.

Bellamy-8

Fast, exciting and unfortunate not to create an opening. Had the better of Kaboul but lacked support.

Tevez-6

Started brilliantly, skipping challenges and taking them on by himself. He drifted to deep as the game progressed and in the end tried to do a bit too much on his own.

Adebayor-4

Very poor. He lost every header to Dawson and again operated wide too much. He was afraid of the physical battle and neve rlooked at the races.

Vieira-5

Came on and did what was asked.

SWP-4

Couldn't influence too much with little time. Assou-Ekotto played very well.

Santa Cruz-3

I'm not against him like many, but bringing him on didn't add anything. Himself and Ade looked clueless together for obvious reasons.




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The journalist

Writer: Yak Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday May 6 2010

Time: 12:01AM

Your Comments

A true reflection of the game Once a Blue. I wonder what everyone else thinks?
Tudor
I thought city played really well in all honesty the result isnt a reflection of the game as this could have been 4-4....but i do agree de-jong was MOM as he kept both modric and hudd in check...they both had short moments of glamor but overall neither was game changer but regardless we looked organized in the back which is important but spurs have alot to look forward to as our midfield is hard to cover because you have to pick and choose who to man out modric lennon or bale.....
RagingSpur
It was a nail biter City started well i thought Tevez was great for the 1st 10-15 mins as was johnson and Bellamy but after Spurs settled we were immense in defence Ledley and Daws were just great Kaboul grew in confidence and Kept Bellamy quiet in the 2nd half Bae was great it was a great performance from our boys and as i said a real nail biter Fulop had a great game and i thought it was gonna be a draw but the goal came and it was that sort of game that had to have that type of goal cruel....but thank god it went our way.Now ive never had a problem with city as alot of fans do due to the financial situation you are in!! good on ya i say ive never had an argument with a City fan and to my knoledge you guys dont really come over to us and start slating us so.....great game and good luck sat i hope you finish above Villa i cant stand them and i think its onward and upward hopefully for both our clubs!!!
only 1 spurs
I'm very gutted atm Tudes, but there are positives and in truth Spurs were the better team. They had the better chances and unfortunately we couldn't quite get there. What annoyed me, was the players at the end, VK was astounding basuically did a lap and clapped, DJ and other stayed around and clapped, Toure couldn't be bothered and had to be dragged on by Sylvinho, i think the team certainly need to be more together. Lets hope for stability. Onwards and Upwards.
Once a Blue
HA HA HA....I wouldn't of shouted my mouth off but we had some citeh fan on our site saying how crap we were and that you boys were gonna spank us!!! what a crock, second half we dominated and we really had the better chances first half, a much better TEAM, and Viera?? OMG, even Ledley has better legs...HA HA take care
gazzalegend
Once a Blue, a very accurate report imo. All the more impressive considering you must be gutted.
Clive 49
But I might add that in reflection of the article, you guys are gratious in defeat unlike some so credit where it's due
gazzalegend
LOL gazzalegend , the city fans name was *****edagin, a right numpty if u ask me. Did anyone notice the conversation Harry and Bellamy had at the end, it was like they knew they would be joining forces next season. The summer transfers re going to be interesting, citys money or spurs in the CL, dependent if we qualify of course.
spurfect one
Sorry his name was pi**edagain*
spurfect one
A good report. I thought King and Dawson were superb again giving Adebayor, Bellamy and Tevez nothing. I disagree with the comment the De Jong was MoM, in the last few games Modric and Huddlestone have been asked to sacrifice their natural games for holding ones which they have done brilliantly, it is that central midfield pairing that has got us over the line as our front men havent scored a lot recently. We have been tight in midfield allowing our wide men the opportunities to get forward. Harry's tactics a side from the Man u game have been spot on.
arpant
gazza man you need to calm down it takes respect to write an article like this after a loss...you cant slate the whole city group because of 1 immature idiot! they for 99.9% have been nothing but great sportsman
RagingSpur
That particular person you mentioned spurfect one is no longer part of the Vital Man City members structure. He along with several other keyboard warriors post elsewhere.
Tudor
DeJong is a fantastic player, hes the new Makalele. Fair report that mate. Good luck next season.
HuddersfieldYiddo
Gazza Legend, save it for P A mate,,
Born&BredSpur
Fair play Tudor, the minority like that are not worth having as a member. As for city i feel it was not as important for them as it was for us to get a result tonight, city will surely be challenging for the title in a few years with the billions at there disposal while spurs have to be a bit more cunning in our transfer dealings, lets hope both clubs can overtake united and arsenal respectively.
spurfect one
Sabatical for me...I just can't go on.
RobsonGreensleeves
COYS.....i was drunk and couldn't watch the match and i think it was a sign... we won we won we won we wonwe won we wonwe won we wonwe won we wonwe won we wonwe won we wonwe won we wonwe won we wonwe won we wonwe won we wonwe won we wonwe won we won.....
phuzinspurs
No disrepect, but we deserved it ten times more than you, and it showed. We've been plugging away at this for years, and you've been at it all of five minutes. We got our reward and justice was done.
Tony Rocky Horror
Don't you wish you actually tried to beat an Arsenal team that has given up a couple of weeks ago?
gunnerkid107
A Good Article and fair. Spurs deserved the winner, but it was close.
Huddsnewsnarl
Once a Blue good on you for your mention of Assou Ekotto's contribution. None of the Newspapers gave him a mention, but I thought he was emmence in both defence and attack. You described the game with fairness and level headedness which must have been difficult under the circumstances. Should have been a writer.
Huddsnewsnarl
Not too many "noisy neighbours" on vital United this evening :0
java
once a blue . just got to say that was a good and fair report of what turned out to be a very close but enjoyable game plus i agree that that dejong was by far your best player , the one thing i did notice though was there didnt seem to be the same drive and organisation in your defense as there was with king and dawson who are real leaders if they were playing for you the result would have been differant . anyway with your finacial clout things can only get better for you , so good luck to you as for us with the nucleus of our team so young we can only get better and dont be surprised if next season theres another game between us next year at the same time but could well be for the pl championship instead of fourth place , good luck . coys
oxford yid
What a good story by a ""true man"" Unlucky City,, Im so glad your club is getting back where you belong, every Spurs fan always behind you against United,, that will never change! TOTTENHAM TILL I DIE!! X
Spursman!
Great report OAB - we are not ready for the CL yet and Spurs did a great job on us. I thought Dawson and King were awsome.
Thaibluefan
OAB, yet another top drawer article on VMC. In truth we aren't there yet, but if we can pick ourselves up we will qualify for a European competition outright for the first time in many, many years.
Johnny Baguette
having looked at the replay, Spurs defence won it for them, but I suppose for the neutral it was a good game. I agree I don't think we are ready just yet, spurs have shown that when it does come to the big games they had what it takes, the two tough games against Arsenal and Chelsea proved that, but we will come back better and stronger next season and although I am pleased for a top 6 finish this season I will have higher expectations next season. CTID
Buzz Lightyear
The best team ended up 4th the table never­ lies.............Citeh have gathered a team of­ individuals, where as Spurs have finally assembled a­ decent squad!! COYS
WestStandEnclosure
Very decent report and fair play to all the City fans that have been so gracious in defeat and have regained a lot of respect. I've always considered City and their fans to be very like Spurs and in a way it was the Spurs 'qualities' of old that let City down in the end. We as Spurs fans have been there, done that and got the t-shirt. The most pleasing thing is the resiliance that Spurs have shown particularly in the last 2 months. Can't say i'll ever like Bellamy, Adebayor or Liam Gallacher and the money thing isn't so great for the game but that is not the City fans fault. Like the rest of us you get what your club gives you - like it or lump it - fortunately today, for once, i am liking it a LOT!!!
Darbinho
championaaaaaay championaaaaaaaay ole ole ole! come on you spursssssssssssssssssssssssssss!!
i love arry
Barry's injury changed the game. Until he went off it was fairly even, though I felt Man City looked the better side whilst Spurs probably had the better oportunities. After he went off, City's attacking game fell apart, and Spurs always looked likely to get at least the draw they needed.
Albarnista
good luck next year! you played well, we played better. I think the key moment was when Barry had to go off, after that the game was all ours.
spurswede
 

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