Skip to main content

News

  • The Monday Verdict(3)
Subscribe to newsfeed 

+The Monday Verdict

Posted on 6 December 2004  - 12:00

Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) Football Club is located in North London. The club is also known as Spurs. Tottenham's home ground is White Hart Lane. The club motto is Audere est Facere (To dare is to do).

Experienced something new and quite novel on arrival at Ewood Park - having a laptop bag searched for fancy dress! No, Blackburn's security did not found out about any secret fetish enjoyed by your website team, it was explained that they were on the lookout having been handed 'intelligence' suggesting that Father's for Justice were planning a demonstration at one of today's games.

As it goes, both sides wouldn't have minded a Superman type in midfield so it mightn't have been a bad thing. But then Michael Brown stepped into the role and donned his cape in setting up the goal for Robbie Keane with a surging 70-odd yard run.

The teams were relayed nice and early with news of Jermain Defoe's return to the starting line-up from the midweek clash with Liverpool in place of Fredi Kanoute. Other changes saw Pedro Mendes, Stephen Kelly and Noureddine Naybet come in for Rohan Ricketts, Noe Pamarot and Anthony Gardner.

Decked out in yellow - a kit worn in victories at Newcastle and Bolton - the team began brightly, pinging the ball around the Rovers half with definite intent. Robbie Keane and Reto Ziegler linked well to provide the first half-chance for Defoe, but Friedel was not unduly troubled.

The half continued to be lively without great goalmouth incident, we were clearly dictating the tempo of the game, one which boiled over slightly with a clash between Paul Dickov and Ledley King after the Scot shoved a falling Leds into the advertising hoardings. Dickov was, minutes later, booked for a foul on Naybet.

Andy Todd went close with a side-footed volley inside the area seven minutes before the break before Brown elected to shoot when Defoe was yelling for the pass in a far more threatening position.

A minute later only the outstretched foot of Friedel denied Defoe the opener. Cleverly found by Keane, the diminutive goal-getter held off the attentions of Craig Short and aimed for the corner and Blackburn were saved by the boot.

Rovers began the second period sharply, a Dickov dash down the left resulted a a low cross that Paul Gallagher managed to swivel and volley, with Paul Robinson reacting well to his first proper work of the afternoon.

Mendes then unleashed a volley following an Atouba throw-in that semi-stretched Friedel as the second half began to simmer.

On 56 minutes, from our point of view, the game did come to the boil. Brown embarked on a searching run that eluded at least two men before being forced to right of the area. He squared the ball that fell fortunately behind the retreating Rovers and Keane was on hand to slot home and opening the scoring.

Substitute Jay Bothroyd responded almost immediately with a sharp header from an Emerton cross before Defoe's volley from Kelly's cross forced Friedel to again save with his feet.

Half chances followed to add a little comfort to the scoreline, but Keane and Defoe both seemed to be thwarted at the vital moments. With 17 minutes remaining Jamie Redknapp made his first entrance since the Charlton game in place of Ziegler, who simply looked tired after a tough sequence of fixtures for the 18-year-old.

Blackburn began to probe more forcefully and, from an Emerton cross, Todd headed across goal and it took a superb block by Naybet to deny Dickov a routine leveller. Martin Jol reacted to the increased threat with the introduction of Gardner for Keane - an attempt to lock the door on the home side and head home with the points.

And so it came to pass.