Tottenham Hotspur dominated Everton for large portions of the match at White Hart Lane, but was unable to put away their chances and instead had to settle for a scoreless draw with the Toffees on Saturday.
With Christian Eriksen still out with a knee injury, Ryan Mason started the match moved further up the pitch into the #10 role behind Harry Kane. Nabil Bentaleb slotted in the midfield beside Eric Dier, and Danny Rose rejoined the starting 11 in place of Ben Davies.
Everton had the majority of the possession early, and it was the Toffees that had the best chance of the opening 15 minutes after Kyle Walker gave the ball away in front of the box. Tom Cleverly had a clean shot on goal but Hugo Lloris was there to tip the ball over the goal.
Spurs' best chance came soon after when Ryan Mason's long ball sprung Harry Kane. Kane was one-on-one with Tim Howard but somehow managed to shoot the ball straight at Tim Howard. A pretty serious miss for a striker that still hasn't gotten off the mark this season.
Spurs had a couple of other half-chances as well: Nabil Bentaleb had a few driven shots from outside the box that went wide, and Toby Alderweireld had a header tipped over the ball by Howard. Neither club could break the deadlock and the first half ended 0-0.
No changes for either side at halftime, but it wasn't long before Spurs made their first sub. Mousa Dembele somehow managed to twist his ankle on a cross into the box and was replaced by 19-year old Dele Alli after being stretchered off.
Spurs had a few more chances late in the match: Ryan Mason had another great chance blocked by Tim Howard in the 56th minute, and Kane had two attempts blocked later on before Chadli put a rebound attempt over the bar.
Everton's best chance of the half came from a glancing header from Arouna Kone off of a cross from Oviedo, but the ball went just wide.
Late in the match, Spurs started pressing forward and pushing for the winning goal, but were constantly let down by a combination of their finishing and some extremely uneven officiating by Mike Jones. Everton seemed content to sit back and try to hit Spurs on the counter, and had a few decent chances, but ultimately neither side was able to put the ball into the net. The match ended 0-0.
- Spurs dominated the match overall and are unfortunate to only get a point at home against Everton. They were solid defensively, but were unlucky with finishing and really deserved more than what they got today.
- Mike Jones was awful today. Just terrible. It wasn't that he favored one team over the other (though Spurs did have significantly more fouls and cards issued than Everton), it was that he was just consistently wrong and lost control of the match. His whistles effectively killed off any momentum Spurs might have had.
- I was not happy with Ryan Mason in the hole early, but he did have that nice pass to Kane that set up the early goal opportunity. He was making good runs and working extremely hard to get into good positions, and he had a couple of nice shots blocked away by Howard, but overall but his on-ball skills were pretty bad today.
- I'm pretty much done with Kyle Walker after this match. Another meh-to-poor match from Walker, who had a couple of shocking give-aways. Time for Trippier to get his chance.
- I'm positively salivating about the prospect of seeing Son Heung-Min in this attacking midfield band. Hope he starts soon.
- Tim Howard is either trash or amazing. Unfortunately, today it was Option B.
- SO HAPPY to see Alex Pritchard make his debut this season, though I wish it had come 10 minutes earlier. Pritch wasn't given enough time to make an impact on the match, but he could've been the impact man if given time to establish himself.
- Despite the frustration of yet another draw, Spurs actually played what might have been their best overall match of the season. I was pleased with their defense, and Hugo was rarely tested the entire match. This team is missing only a couple of pieces from being a really, really good team. They might have already bought one of them. Patience is needed. I think they'll get there.
- Here's Michael Caley's xG map for this match. ARGH.
- Super-duper frustrating to not get the win today, but at least Two Points in Eight Matches™ is now off the table.