Skip to main content


  • Pav, Luka complete great week
Subscribe to newsfeed 

Pav, Luka complete great week

Posted on 28 February 2010  - 12:00

Roman Pavlyuchenko and Luka Modric scored the goals in a 2-1 win against Everton on Sunday as the lads made it three wins in what could be a significant week of the season.

Pav, Luka complete great week

Roman Pavlyuchenko and Luka Modric scored the goals in a 2-1 win against Everton on Sunday as the lads made it three wins in what could be a significant week of the season.

Last Sunday's victory in the mud at Wigan was followed by a 4-0 success against Bolton to book a place in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup on Wednesday night and then the toughest test of the lot as in-form Everton arrived at White Hart Lane.

Victors over Chelsea and Manchester United this month, Everton were swept aside in a fantastic first half display but showed all their trademark resolve to claw their way back into the match in the second half.

Harry Redknapp made two changes from the FA Cup win against Bolton with Vedran Corluka back at right-back for Benoit Assou-Ekotto and Niko Kranjcar in for the injured David Bentley.

Jermain Defoe was fit to start after coming off against Bolton with a tight hamstring and Wilson Palacios was fit after illness also forced him off early in that match. Peter Crouch, who missed Bolton with a foot problem, was back on the bench.

Everton kicked-off with Yakubu spearheading the attack in front of a five-man midfield with Victor Anichebe and Steven Pienaar in the wide positions. Jack Rodwell started in central midfield after scoring in the win against United last week.

You sensed a fast start was always going to be key against an Everton team that played European football in Portugal on Thursday night and the lads delivered just that with a first half full of energy, movement and slick passing on the wet playing surface.

Everton were pinned back - Phil Neville picked up an early yellow card after upending Gareth Bale - and we soon grabbed that vital opening goal.

The goal owed a lot to Tom Huddlestone's vision and Defoe's movement. Huddlestone picked up the ball deep and Defoe was off, bending his run away from Heitinga towards the box. Huddlestone dropped the ball onto his foot from 50 yards away, Defoe drilled across goal and Roman Pavlyuchenko was there to slide in.

We had a scare at the other end when Gomes spilled Leighton Baines' corner but Michael Dawson was there when it mattered as Yakubu fired the loose ball at goal.

We were soon back on top with a fanastic 10-minute spell. Palacios led a break that ended with Tim Howard beating away a fierce Pavlyuchenko shot and Bale somehow managed to dig out a cross from the byline that Niko Kranjcar won at the far post, but his header lacked the power to trouble the keeper.

The spell ended with a wonderful goal. It was all about our Croatian trio as Kranjcar, Modric and Corluka played the ball around in a tight space on the right. Eventually Kranjcar fed Modric on the right edge, he drove forward a couple of yards before somehow pinging a shot home off the underside of the crossbar.

Everton regrouped but struggled to find a way past Dawson and Sebastien Bassong. However, they carved out a golden chance in the 41st minute when Neville flighted a cross in from the right for Rodwell, who missed the target with a free header from 10 yards.

Bale was at the forefront of the final two moves of the half. First his cross was inches away from Defoe sliding in at the near post, then he led a break from deep, shifted wide of Heitinga and saw his low shot deflect just wide.

Everton made a switch at half-time with Phil Jagielka on for Leon Osman but they stayed 4-5-1 with Heitinga stepping into a holding midfield role. The Dutchman was soon in the action, firing a shot that Gomes took cleanly diving to his right.

Disaster then struck as Kranjcar backheeled for Huddlestone and the midfielder caught Heitinga in his follow through. After a few minutes of he was stretchered off and replaced by Younes Kaboul in a straight swap.

We hardly had time to adjust when Everton pulled a goal back. Arteta struck a deep corner, Rodwell climbed well at the far post to head back and Yakubu squeezed the ball home at the near post.

A minute later, Gomes had to be alive to Rodwell's half-volley at the near post. This match was far from over.

The lads settled and after Bale's side-stepping run and cross taken by Howard, Kranjcar picked the ball up centrally and fired a yard wide. The game was now more open with Everton committing more men forward and gaps starting to appear at the other end. Pavlyuckenko almost sent Defoe in on goal, but overhit the pass slightly.

Eidur Gudjohnsen entered the fray for Defoe in the 71st minute but the next action of note was at the other end as Palacios' pass was read by Pienaar and he used Yakubu's run across Bassong to open the space for a shot - Gomes was up to the task and parried away diving to his left.

It really was end to end at this point and next up was Corluka for a piledriver from 25 yards that Howard watched all the way to tip over. Kranjcar's corner was headed back out to him and he lashed a shot to the near post that Howard was glad to catch in his midrift. Kranjcar then played a one-two with Pavlyuchenko and shot low, Howard took low diving to his left.

There was a major scare in the 78th minute when Rodwell somewhat scuffed a shot across Gomes only to present an open goal for Donovan at the near post but the substitute fluffed his lines and side-footed into the side-netting. A let off.

Both managers made their final changes with nine minutes left with Peter Crouch on for Pavlyuchenko and James Vaughan for Rodwell.

There were heart-stopping moments at both ends as the game ended like a cup-tie.

Crosses went into our box - all dealt with - and the ball just wouldn't fall for both sets of forwards. Kranjcar forced a fine save from Howard as the board went up for six minutes added time.

It was nerve-wracking stuff as the majority of the 35,000-plus crowd bayed for the final whistle and, thankfully, there was no late reply from the men from Goodison as we climbed in into the top four.

Spurs: Gomes; Corluka, Bassong, Dawson, Bale; Kranjcar, Huddlestone (Kaboul, 53) Palacios, Modric; Defoe (Gudjohnsen, 71), Pavlyuchenko (Crouch, 81). Subs: Alnwick, Dervite, K Walker, Assou-Ekotto.

Everton: Howard; Neville, Heitinga, Distin, Baines; Arteta, Osman (Jagielka, 46), Rodwell (Vaughan, 81), Pienaar; Yakubu, Anichebe (Donovan, 63). Subs: Nash, Yobo, Bilyaletdinov, Gosling.