Now THAT was a fun match! Tottenham Hotspur went into Saturday’s Premier League tie against Chelsea with a lot of questions, but they shoved them all aside en route to a 3-1 shellacking of the Blues at Wembley Stadium. Spurs got goals from Dele Alli, Harry Kane, and Son Heung-Min in the win, their second consecutive 3-1 win over Chelsea going back to last season.
Such an emphatic win was unexpected, not least because Spurs were dealing with injuries at key positions and a lack of depth. But also Chelsea is a really good team, one of three Premier league sides that were still undefeated. Well, now there are two.
For today’s theme, it’s time to go back to the holiday well. It’s a few days past Thanksgiving, but my guess is that most of you still have some leftovers from that meal in the fridge and are dreading the prospect of throwing it all away eventually. (Though honestly if you don’t eat it now you’re going to need to).
Here are the player ratings for Tottenham’s 3-1 win over Chelsea to the theme of Thanksgiving leftovers.
5 stars: Pie for breakfast
No, this doesn’t involve any fancy cookery or transformation of Thanksgiving foodstuffs from ordinary to something new, but come on, is there anything better than just shoving a cold piece of leftover pumpkin pie in your mouth with your morning coffee on the Friday after Thanksgiving? Or any pie for that matter? No, gentle readers, no there is not. However, if it is the Monday after Thanksgiving and you still have uneaten pie in the fridge then there is something wrong with you.
Christian Eriksen: Played centrally alongside Dier and Sissoko, Christian completely shut down Jorginho and was 34/39 passing in a match where Spurs counterattacked. Two assists, seven chances created. Absolutely outstanding. Eriksen is an 8 now, this is canon.
Son Heung-Min: Sonny would’ve gotten 5 stars even if the only thing he did all game was score that goal, but he terrorized Chelsea’s defense the entire match. Six shots, 83% passing, and worked his tail off dragging defenders out of position. Could’ve scored at least two more goals. I almost felt sorry for Jorginho and David Luiz on that run. Almost.
Dele Alli: Timed his run perfectly for his headed goal, and also played the pass that sprung Sonny for Spurs’ third. Created havoc in and around Chelsea’s box in the free 10 role and even had 2 tackles. Boy, have we missed Dele in the opening part of this season. Welcome back. Please do more of this.
4.5 stars: Thanksgiving leftover sandwiches
It’s commonplace almost to the point of triteness, but the tried-and-true Friday lunchtime Thanksgiving leftover sandwiches are still delicious. Cold turkey, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, and maybe some stuffing in between two slices of homemade bread is a great way of using up that extra food. You can even use those leftover dinner rolls. Just because everyone does it doesn’t mean it’s not still utterly wonderful.
Harry Kane: Scored with a lovely long range shot, and drew the foul that led to Tottenham’s first goal. Would have five stars if not for the skied attempt from six yards out. Five shot attempts, three on target — Spurs are better when Kane gets shots off, whether or not he scores from them. He’s back.
Moussa Sissoko: Sissoko has found a role in this Spurs team that minimizes his weaknesses and emphasizes what he does really well. No shots or key passes but had four tackles (including THAT one, you know which one), 10 ball recoveries, and only one foul. Was great around the box with one big chance — his square ball to Kane in the box (which Kane skied). He was unquestionably outstanding.
Serge Aurier: A great match. Created two chances, and dealt admirably with Chelsea’s left-sided attack of Marcos Alonso and Eden Hazard. Five clearances, a tackle, a couple of interceptions, a handful of clearances, and very few brain-fall-out incidents or defensive blips.
4 stars: Curry with leftover turkey
Let’s say you have tons of leftover turkey but after a full day of stuffing yourself with that delicious bird the last thing you want to do is actually taste the turkey again the next day. That’s why disguising it in an Indian curry is so brilliant. My family made “butter turkey” on Friday in the instant pot and it was indistinguishable from butter chicken. Delicious, too.
Toby Alderweireld: I can’t recall anything super specific that Toby did that was either really good or particularly bad. He was just his usual super solid defensive self — safe with the ball, able to hoof it out of danger when required. That’s probably underselling his performance.
Eric Dier: I was super worried about Dier’s ability to deal with Chelsea’s midfield trio, but with Dele and Eriksen basically man-marking Jorginho out of play, Dier was able to more easily handle Kovacic and Kante. Got stuck in and really helped disrupt anything that Chelsea tried to get going, especially in the first half.
Ben Davies: We give Ben Davies a lot of stick on this website, most of it (we believe) deservedly. But although his passing was not great (25/40) and didn’t contribute a whole lot to the offense, he was unquestionably good on Saturday, especially defensively against a very good Chelsea attack. More of this, please.
3 stars: Reheating mashed potatoes and gravy in the microwave
See, here’s the thing: mashed potatoes are good. So good, in fact, that you don’t HAVE to do anything fancy to them. Just chuck it and the gravy in the microwave for a couple of minutes and eat right out of the plastic storage container with a spoon. No judgement.
Hugo Lloris: A couple of very good, if routine, stops and one amazing reaction save on an offside Morata, but otherwise didn’t have a whole lot to do. Against Chelsea, you’ll take that.
Eric Lamela: A late substitute, ran around a bit, was fine. It’s nice that you can use Erik Lamela off the bench vs. Chelsea as a human victory cigar, isn’t it?
Juan Foyth: Juan is a 20-year old central defender playing in one of his first Premier League matches against a very good team, and for the most part he was pretty good. A couple of blips — almost gave away yet another penalty that wasn’t called, was a little scary in possession early on, and was arguably at least partially at fault for Giroud’s goal. But otherwise pretty solid in a pressure cooker of a match. This is a great foundation on which to build, and I’m becoming more and more confident that with time and experience he could be a fantastic defender.
1 star: Thanksgiving Bombs
Dear God why?
Thanksgiving, more like thanks for giving me these amazing leftover hacks!— Tips & Tricks (@awkwardgoogle) November 23, 2018
By So Yummy pic.twitter.com/yDYBt1aur5
No Tottenham Hotspur players were as bad as deep-fried Thanksgiving Bombs.
Tom Carroll Memorial Non-Rating