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Lennon runs rampant on Rovers

Posted on 23 November 2008  - 12:00

Aaron Lennon was in unstoppable form on his first league start under Harry Redknapp in our 1-0 victory over Blackburn Rovers at The Lane.

Lennon runs rampant on Rovers

Aaron Lennon was in unstoppable form on his first league start under Harry Redknapp in our 1-0 victory over Blackburn Rovers at The Lane.

The flying winger set up Roman Pavlyuchenko for the winning goal and continued to be a threat throughout our fourth league victory in six games.

There were three changes to the team which lost 2-1 at Fulham the previous weekend as Redknapp reverted to a 4-4-2 formation.

Pavlyuchenko joined Darren Bent in attack and Benoit Assou-Ekotto returned to fill the left back role. But arguably the most key introduction to the side was Lennon on the right wing.

The tricky winger has shown Redknapp glimpses of what he can do during the appearances he has made, but this game was settled by his domination over his left back.

Martin Olsson had only made four first team appearances for Rovers before this season, only one of them as a starter, so it is fair to say the Swede may never have come up against the lightning pace of someone like Lennon before in his career.

It was this factor that led to the only goal of the game after exactly nine minutes.

Lennon dispossessed Olsson on the halfway line before sprinting away, holding the defender off all the way to the by-line before pulling back to the waiting Pavlyuchenko who swept home.

The Russian wasted no time in celebrating his sixth Spurs goal by running straight to his team-mate and congratulating him on a fantastic contribution.

Five minutes later, Pavlyuchenko could have had his second as he climbed highest to meet David Bentley's in-swinging free-kick, which he glanced against Paul Robinson's post.

It is worth mentioning here the fantastic reception our fans gave ‘Robbo' on his return to White Hart Lane throughout the game.

Robinson spent four seasons here before his summer switch to Ewood Park, making 175 appearances and scoring one memorable goal! His service to the Club has clearly not been forgotten.

But there was little he could do as former team-mate Lennon continued to run rampant during the first half, and he eventually got the better of Olsson once and for all.

The left-back had previously been booked for a trip on the winger before once again over-committing himself against the England Under-21 star five minutes from the break. Olsson's dismissal was no doubt a bitter blow for the visitors going into half-time.

And Lennon came close to deservedly getting his name on the scoresheet from the resultant free-kick, that was cleared to him on the edge of the box.

His left foot shot was fierce and deflected off Ryan Nelsen, only to hit the legs of Robinson. It's fair to say the England stopper knew little about it!

Rovers boss Paul Ince brought on defender Danny Simpson to fill the left-back void at the break with striker Benni McCarthy making way, suggesting a damage-limitation policy from the visitors.

Therefore, chances were a little more infrequent in the second half as we looked to close the game.

We had our moments. Tom Huddlestone hit a fierce curling shot inches over the bar from 30 yards on 54 minutes, while Jonathan Woodgate should have done better with his close range header from Bentley's free-kick on 70 minutes.

Fraizer Campbell was introduced 15 minutes from time in a bid to continue his good run of recent form, and his 81st minute ball across the face of goal was just out of Bent's reach.

And Campbell should have had a goal for himself four minutes later, putting his free header wide from Bentley's cross.

But at the other end, Blackburn could create nothing clear cut, and it was a comfortable afternoon overall for Heurelho Gomes as we regained our league momentum and climbed out of the bottom three.

Spurs (4-4-2): Gomes; Corluka, Woodgate, King, Assou-Ekotto; Bentley (O'Hara, 86), Huddlestone, Jenas, Lennon; Pavlyuchenko (Campbell, 74), Bent
Subs not used: Cesar, Bale, Zokora, Gunter, Dawson

Liverpool (4-4-2): Robinson; Ooijer, Samba, Nelsen, Olsson; Emerton (Derbyshire, 71), Mokoena, Andrews, Pedersen (Treacy, 81); Santa Cruz, McCarthy (Simpson, 46)
Subs: Brown, Tugay, Fowler, Roberts