Hey, Tottenham Hotspur won another football match! Spurs’ 1-0 victory over Brighton & Hove Albion at the AmEx on Saturday won’t go down in history as one of the best or most compelling matches of football in the club’s history, but it was a solid win away from home over a very good Premier League team. In fact, that away win could end up paying dividends down the line. Spurs may still be in third place, four points behind (ugh) Arsenal at the top of the table, but they’re racking up the early points here at the start of the season, despite the feeling that they have yet to get out of second gear.
This match had some really good moments (most of the first half) and some not-so-good moments (most of the second half), but there were a bunch of unconverted good chances that might have gone in on another day. A win’s a win.
For today’s theme, let’s talk about personal interactions. We don’t REALLY know the Tottenham Hotspur players we see on the pitch every week, but we all consume a metric ton of Tottenham media every season, so it feels like we have a good sense of who these players are as people. So for today’s theme, let’s talk about who we’d like to hang out with, specifically which Tottenham players we (and by “we” we mean “I” as I’m the one doing the writing) would like to have a beer with. This could be at your local, or at Beavertown in the stadium, or anywhere, really. It’s about who you feel comfortable cracking open a cold one and shooting the shit with.
Here are your Tottenham Hotspur player ratings to the theme of Spurs players you’d like to have a beer with.
5 stars: Dejan Kulusevski
Everything I’ve seen from this guy tells me he’s an absolute riot to be around. His interviews have shown him to be smart, engaging, funny, and approachable. I love him. I feel like if I randomly sat down next to him at a pub and struck up a conversation, we’d be deeply engrossed in conversation within five minutes. I want Deki to be my best friend.
No Tottenham players were as good as hitting the pub with Deki in tow.
4 stars: Richarlison
Richy just seems like a good dude — pleasant to hang around, affable, and likable. Richarlison seems like the kind of guy who would be prone to turning up randomly at a Spurs pub some weekday evening for a quick pint with the supporters, back-slapping the regulars, and then disappearing back into the night.
Hugo Lloris (Community — 4.0): Made a couple of really nice saves over the course of the match and looked good coming off his line. A good rebound from a poor match vs Arsenal.
Eric Dier (Community — 4.0): Another solidly effective match. Dependable, stable defense. Didn’t let much past him, and held things together during a couple of scary moments, especially in the second half.
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (Community — 4.0): The 3-5-2 seems to suit General Ho, as he’s not under as much defensive pressure and it allows him more freedom to do what he does well. This was a good match.
Rodrigo Bentancur (Community — 4.0): I was really, really impressed with Lolo’s performance, especially in the first half when he seemed to be everywhere. Trailed off a little in the second period, especially after the formation shift, but still a very solid outing.
Antonio Conte (Community — 4.0): Bonus points for shifting to the 3-5-2, which looked effective and fun against a very good Brighton side. Would’ve liked to see the subs come a little sooner but this is very much a lather-rinse-repeat kind of criticism.
3.5 stars: Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg
Head to a pub with General Ho and I bet you’d end up in a heated discussion over the finer points of football tactics and pressing triggers. Hojbjerg’s obviously a smart dude but he seems like the kind of guy who only wants to talk about football. Which is fine, if you’re just having a beer but not if you’re looking for insight into his life.
Ben Davies (Community — 3.5): Good to see Ben back out there. Had some interesting progressive runs from deep, but got dragged out of position on a couple of occasions. Pretty good!
Ryan Sessegnon (Community — 3.5): Another player who had an exceptional first half but trailed off a lot in the second. A little wasteful in the attacking third, but solid in defense overall. I’d like to see more of him.
Harry Kane (Community — 3.5): Bagged a great goal on a flicked header, but dragged another “vintage Harry Kane chance” wide and looked a split second slow on his passing and shot creation. Tired?
Matt Doherty (Community — 3.5): After an especially eventful first 20 minutes, someone in the writer’s Slack said “Matt Doherty makes this team work and I’m questioning my life choices.” Matt looked a little rusty and defensively suspect at times but he sure did have some fun looking moments going forward. One really good defensive stop late as well. These minutes will hopefully pay dividends during this crunch run.
3 stars: Hugo Lloris
Hugo seems like an affable and approachable guy. Maybe he’s a little quiet at first, but I bet he opens up once he gets to know you. And I bet he has TONS of good stories to tell about football, both at Spurs and with France. Just be sure to take his keys first.
Yves Bissouma (Community — 3.5): Conte has said we haven’t seen more of Bissouma because he hasn’t glommed onto the tactics fully yet. You could still see a bit of discomfort with him out there — the midfielders looked a little shaky positionally at times, like they weren’t syncing as a unit. Yves picked up a dumb, cheap yellow early which might have limited his effectiveness. But this wasn’t a bad performance at all, just not a great one.
Richarlison (Community — 3.0): Came in as a late substitute for Bissouma and precipitated a formation shift back to 3-4-3. Buzzed around a lot, nearly got on the end of a Perisic cross, but otherwise not a ton to say here.
Cuti Romero (Community — 3.5): Cuti has looked a little off his feed lately and I’m not sure whether it’s coming back from his recent injury, or just a little dip in form. He looked a lot better on Saturday, though had a couple of moments where he charged in too quickly and got beat. His shithousery was on point, though.
Son Heung-Min (Community — 3.5): Forced one great save and scored another banger that was called back for offside. Otherwise, Sonny was more frustrating than he was outstanding, at times dallying on the ball instead of making a simple pass or looking for a shot.
1 star: Harry Kane
Harry notoriously doesn’t drink, so meeting him at the pub would likely be an exercise in misery where you slowly get progressively drunker and he drinks club soda and spends the entire time talking about his latest golf round and/or his TB12 regimen. Harry’s a great guy, but I think I’d rather go drinking with just about anyone else.
No Tottenham players were as bad as going out for drinks with Harry Kane.
Tom Carroll Memorial Non-Rating
Ivan Perisic, Oliver Skipp
Eric Lamela Memorial Shithouse Award
Cuti Romero — It has to be him, right? If for nothing else than the way he went through the back of Danny Welbeck late in the match. Maybe should’ve gotten a yellow for that, but hey. Go on, king.