Tottenham Hotspur certainly left it late against the bottom team in the Championship on Monday night, but their trip to Wycombe ended up with what most would’ve called a predictable scoreline. Spurs went down early to a Fred Onyedinma strike, but Gareth Bale equalized for Tottenham at the stroke of halftime, and a late flurry of goals — one from Harry Winks and a brace from substitute Tanguy Ndombele — sent Spurs to the Fifth Round of the FA Cup. The final score was 1-4.
Tottenham went into this match with one eye on Thursday’s Premier League tie against Liverpool, so some rotation was expected. That’s exactly what happened. Joe Hart started the match in goal, with Japhet Tanganga deputizing at right back for Spurs, with Toby Alderweireld, Davinson Sanchez, and Ben Davies in the back line. Harry Winks and Moussa Sissoko started in central midfield, with Gareth Bale, Lucas Moura, and Erik Lamela behind Carlos Vinicius to spearhead the attack.
1’ — First attack of the match results in a blocked shot for Erik Lamela that goes out for a corner. Excellent hold-up work from Carlos Vinicius.
7’ — Good chance for Wycombe. Admiral Muskwe (yes, that’s his name) gets away from Davinson Sanchez and has a free header on target that forces a save from Joe Hart. Whoof.
14’ — A shot! From Gareth Bale! Bale takes a nice outch and rips a shot with his right that goes just wide of the post.
25’ — Goal to Wycombe. Fred Onyedinma opens the account for the home side with a low shot from inside the box. 1-0. The defense wasn’t great there.
33’ — Early sub for Wycombe. Joe Jacobson is forced off due to injury and is replaced by Darius Charles.
35’ — Whoa! Moussa Sissoko has a shot that takes a deflection off a Wycombe player, pings off the post, and straight into the arms of the prone Wycombe keeper. Wild.
44’ — Spurs off the woodwork AGAIN. A great ball into the box from Winks and Tanganga heads it off the crossbar and out.
45+2’ — GOOOOOOALLLLLL! Gareth Bale puts Tottenham level right on the stroke of halftime! Lucas Moura lofts a ball into an onside Bale who taps it home from point blank range. That’ll make the halftime talk easier!
Halftime — well that was fun for the neutrals! Spurs were carving Wycombe open on the attack but couldn’t turn them into goals until Bale’s strike right before the whistle.
Spurs opt to make a halftime substitution, bringing on Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg for Japhet Tanganga. Sissoko moves to right back.
49’ — Lucas Moura very nearly puts Spurs ahead! Some nice interplay around Wycombe’s box leads to a shot from Lucas, but his low effort is just wide. Seconds later, Gareth Bale dribbles into the box and puts another one just wide. Man!
58’ — Sub for Spurs, and here comes Harry Kane. He’s on for Vinicius.
64’ — Bale darts into the box from the left wing and thumps a ball that the keeper parries away. Good burst of speed from him.
67’ — Double sub for Spurs, and the heavy artillery is on. Son Heung-Min comes on for Lucas, and Ndombele is on for Lamela.
69’ — HOW??? Spurs should be up right now after Kane was involved in a play at an open net but the keeper did just enough to get a hand on the ball and it dribbled just out.
72’ — Sub for Wycombe and here’s Akinfenwa, all 280lbs of him. Go on, big fella! On the ensuing play, Sonny darts past a couple of defenders and fires a low shot that goes wide right.
80’ — Oh man, Sonny was wide open in the box after Sissoko found him with a cross and he sweeps it over the bar. Usually he buries that.
85’ — GOOOOOOOAAAAALLLL! HARRY WINKS LMAO! Harry Kane had a shot blocked right at the end line off of a great ball in from Ndombele.. The rebound bounced out to Winks at the top of the box and he just... casually lofted a ball into the net. Hilarious! Spurs lead!
86’ — GOOOOOOALLLLLLL!! TANGUY NDOMBELE MAKES IT THREE! Great pass from Son who took a couple of dribbles and finds Tanguy in the box and he turns the ball home.
88’ — Oh dear. Ben Davies is down injured, and he’s forced off. Joe Rodon is his replacement.
90+2’ — GOOOOAAAAALLLLL!!! TANGUY AGAIN! This time
Winks Hojbjerg feeds him with a through ball in the box and he powers it past the keeper. 4-1 Spurs!
FULL TIME! Well, it took 85 minutes and Spurs’ heavyweights had to make appearances, but Spurs got the job done. Final score is 1-4, and Tottenham will face Everton at Goodison Park in the next round of the FA Cup.
- Harry Winks had a goal
and an assistin the last five minutes of the match, and it’s a good thing for him because I thought he was pretty suspect for much of the previous 85. He was ok with the ball but had plenty of giveaways and was again positionally deficient in his midfield role.
- Spurs’ big problem in the first half was the Winkssoko midfield, which left the back line with almost no protection. That said, Spurs’ defense should be good enough to deal with it. Davinson Sanchez had a horrible match in general today.
- Tottenham carved Wycombe open again and again in the opening 2/3s of the match but their finishing was lackluster. Carlos Vinicius had a less than stellar match, even though he held the ball up really well for Spurs’ first opportunity of the game.
- But now some good: Gareth Bale played well! He will never have that burst of speed but you could see remnants of his old self in the way he moved. He had 8 shots today! Honestly, we should just play him up top — he’s good in and around the box!
- Tanguy Ndombele is very good at football.
- I’m not thrilled with the fact that we had to bring on Kane, Son, Hojbjerg, and Ndombele to get a win at a club at the bottom of the Championship, but we’re still alive in the FA Cup and that’s good. Got some mild rest for our stars ahead of Liverpool on Thursday, too.
- The Davies injury is concerning. Hopefully it’s a short duration or we’ll be leaning on Reguilon even more in the coming weeks.