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Tottenham 1-0 Birmingham City: Bergwijn strike wins it for Spurs at the death

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Spurs are now 3-0 in preseason action, which doesn’t mean anything.

Tottenham Hotspur v Reading - Pre-Season Friendly Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

Tottenham Hotspur played their second preseason friendly match in two days today, this time welcoming Championship club Birmingham City to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. It was a pretty dour match with rotated sides for much of it, but just when you thought it would end in a scoreless draw Steven Bergwijn ripped a shot into the bottom corner of the net and Spurs earned a 1-0 win.

Jose Mourinho played a rotated side to begin, with Eric Dier in central defense and captaining the side. Joe Hart started in goal, with youngsters Harvey White, Jack Clarke, and Dennis Cirkin all getting starts. Harry Kane, fresh out of quarantine, was on the bench but it was Lucas Moura who played at the tip of the spear. Gedson Fernandes also got another start but this time it was in the attacking midfield band, with Serge Aurier at right back.

Key Moments

15’ — Chance for Spurs! Harvey White floats a beauty of a free kick to the back post and finds Dier’s head, but Eric can’t nod it on target. Lovely ball in, though.

39’ — Chance! Lucas pounces on a poor Birmingham backpass, and Sessegnon gets a shot on target from close range. Keeper is there to block it away.

Halftime subs: Dele, Davies, Bergwijn, Lloris. Out: Davies, White, Hart, Cirkin.

56’ — Lucas with an overhead kick but he doesn’t connect cleanly. Easy save for the keeper.

61’ — Pierre Hojbjerg comes on for Moussa Sissoko.

71’ — Sub for Spurs, Son Heung-Min comes on for Clarke.

81’ — Maybe Spurs’ best chance of the game. Sessegnon with a shot from inside the box, but it hits side netting.

89’ — GOAL! Steven Bergwijn finally breaks the deadlock as he rips a shot into the bottom right corner.

FULL TIME — That’s it! Spurs win the match with virtually the last kick of the game and go 3-0 in preseason.

Reactions

  • This match kinda blew. That’s okay because it’s preseason, but still.
  • Birmingham were well organized and compact at the back, and it was good experience for Spurs to try and unlock a side like that because they’ll certainly be facing that kind of organization a ton this season against bottom half league sides.
  • Really impressed with Harvey White today. Good positioning, has an eye for a long, progressive pass from deep. He might be the best set piece taker Spurs have right now. He should get minutes in the early round of the cups.
  • Also continue to be impressed with Dennis Cirkin, who looks calm and composed with the ball. Didn’t get forward as much as I expected, but with Aurier on the other flank I’m guessing this was instruction and not the way he plays.
  • Spurs are just way more dangerous when Dele is in the side.
  • Gedson was, uh, not great in the attacking band. Bless him, he tried, but he’s been much more useful as a RB than as a midfielder. If we’re going to use him, let’s think about using him as Aurier-lite.
  • Jack Clarke was pretty anonymous. He needs another loan, hopefully somewhere where he’ll actually play.
  • Sad, but I guess not surprised, to not see Harry Kane come on despite making the bench.
  • Spurs’ final preseason tune-up is Sept. 5 against Watford at Vicarage Road.