Tottenham Hotspur traveled to Haifa, Israel for their fourth and final preseason game of the summer, taking on AS Roma and former boss Jose Mourinho. With the temperature sitting at 82 degrees and the humidity levels even higher, the players stayed cautious when pushing themselves to the limit.
Of course, the goal of preseason is to have everyone be fit and stay injured-free, but this final game was also about beating Mourinho and not having to hear from the fandom that comes from him and the cray followers of his.
Roma put forth a brilliant display on the attack inside the first minute with Tammy Abraham narrowly missing the goal. Afterward, Spurs were able to get into the game but struggle in the midfield with Roma pressing high and forcing Yves Bissouma and Pierre-Emile Højbjerg to lose possession of the ball at times.
Missing a few chances with shots coming from outside the box by Ivan Perisic, he is going to be super fun to watch this season, and an attempted back post run by Matt Doherty.
Roma scored the only goal of the game on a corner kick taken by Paulo Dybala and finding Roger Ibañez around the six-yard box and into the back of the net. After allowing the goal, Spurs stayed with their playing style and created far more chances, just nothing was able to fall.
Here are a few instant reactions with the final preseason game in check:
- Although it was hot and muggy, both teams stuck to their style of play. You could see how drenched the Roma players were by the sweat.
- Yes, it is a “friendly” but my goodness call a penalty when it's a penalty. The ref missed one for both teams.
- For those of you that watched the broadcast through Paramount Plus as I did, it was dreadful to listen. Never want to be that guy to commentate on how poorly they are doing with my friends being in the business, but that was shockingly awful.
- Spurs midfield struggled against Roma’s press, mainly Bissouma and a big part could be that he is a little behind schedule after his positive Covid test in South Korea and missing key days of tactical training.
- Already mentioned it, but Perisic is going to be super fun to watch. His ability to go up and down the pitch and never look tired is incredible. Even in the friendly, he played his heart out for Conte and we know why he was the most important signing to get done. For any FPL players, grab him as I have.
- Cristian Romero doesn’t care about the feelings of the opposing side, with his challenges and on-ball tackles being beautiful to the eye.
- Front three connected a few times with Harry Kane having his goal disallowed after Dejan Kulusevski was ruled offside in the one-two. Being the final game, it was all about building the fitness for the front three to hit the ground running next week.
- Clement Lenglet might have sealed his name to the starting XI. He pushed the ball up the field and his passes for the majority of the second half were crisp. Lenglet even found Romero in the middle of the box for a possible header, before a foul by Romero.
- The Brazilian Trifecta came on and had some moments with Richarlison dribbling his way into the box and just missing a shot on goal or possible tap into Kane in the middle of the box.
- Premier League season starts in exactly one week with Tottenham hosting Southampton.
Possible XI for GW1:
Doherty, Romero, Dier, Lenglet, Perisic,
Kulusevski, Kane, Son
Let us know your thoughts on who Conte should pick for the first game of the season. It will be a fun ride this year, as always COYS!!!