Son Heung-Min practically willed Tottenham Hotspur to a win today, scoring a late winner from distance to propel Spurs to a 1-0 decision over Newcastle at Wembley Stadium. Going in, there was some talk about whether Sonny would start at all, since he was playing in his second match in four days after returning from an exhausting trip to the Asian Cup.
But he did start, and played 189 minutes in total this week, scoring two goals in the process. Sonny admitted that he was tired after the match, but his manager Mauricio Pochettino praised his tenacity and work rate, comparing him to a “battery.”
“Sonny is like when you have a battery, you work work work and then the battery is gone. He is like this, he gives you everything and when he’s exhausted he says ‘I need to change’ or needs to rest. He’s like this. Always on the pitch he’s 100 per cent in every action without or without the ball. That is the most important thing, it’s a very good example for everyone, watching him play. Of course after the first season he understood what we expected of him.
“He’s now if you see him, he’s one of the players who is always moving on the pitch, trying to get the best position in defensive and offensive situations. Always giving options to team-mates, running forward, dropping and then arriving from the second line. He is a very complete player today and we are so happy with his performance.”
So this is a really fun and accurate depiction of what Son brings to the pitch for Tottenham, but it also makes me giggle to think about a taking a depleted Sonny and plugging him into a wall outlet for a couple of hours when he runs out of juice. Maybe they can rig up some solar panels to have a smaller carbon footprint? Put Harry Kane on a treadmill connected to a generator?
The win puts Spurs up to second in the table above Manchester City and four points behind Liverpool. This is perhaps only temporary as City play Arsenal tomorrow and could leap back ahead, while West Ham host Liverpool on Monday. But either way, it’s worth celebrating, and Pochettino went on to praise his team, saying they deserve to be where they are.
“We don’t need to be in some position like today to convince ourselves about our capacity, our potential or possibility to win. We always believe in ourselves. We are there because we believe in ourselves. Then it’s if we are capable to fight until the end, to be close and fight until the end to go close to our opponent to be champions. Today, we are there because we deserve to be there. We will see what happens in the future.”