Burnley 0-0 Spurs
Report from Turf Moor
05 April 2015|Tottenham Hotspur
It ended honours even at Turf Moor as we battled out a goalless draw against Burnley on Easter Sunday.
Clear-cut chances were few and far between as we returned to Premier League action after a 15-day break for internationals.
Christian Eriksen fired over with our clearest sight of goal in the second half while at the other end Michel Vorm, making his first start for us in the Premier League, tipped over two efforts from Danny Ings, one in each half.
Several of our travelling supporters wore short sleeves with the Lancashire weather perhaps more befitting of the Burnley Cricket Club next door as the sun shone through.
The two-week break was not enough for goalkeeper Hugo Lloris to overcome a knee injury sustained against Leicester, leading to Vorm's opportunity, and there was a change in the back four too as Vlad Chiriches came in for Jan Vertonghen who was suffering from illness.
After performing well as a substitute against Leicester, Paulinho was preferred in midfield as Andros Townsend started on the bench.
The absence of Lloris and Vertonghen left the position of captain up for grabs and Mauricio Pochettino duly handed it to Harry Kane, who sported the armband for the first time as he went in search of his 30th goal of what has been a remarkable season.
We retained the ball well in the early stages but almost gifted the home side the lead in the opening five minutes. Ryan Mason, under pressure, knocked the ball into the path of Danny Ings who charged into the box but fired his shot straight at Vorm.
The home side were full of endeavour and energy without the ball which made life tricky for us, although there appeared enough space available in wide areas to offer encouragement. Nacer Chadli found the ball in good areas and with 15 minutes gone forced the first save of note from Tom Heaton when he rolled in from the left and bent a shot from the edge of the box.
Our six yard box came under threat from a well worked set-play by Kieran Trippier before Danny Rose and Mason tried their luck from distance as the half settled into more of a rhythm. What was lacking though was a meaningful tempo as the game cried out for someone to grab it by the scruff of the neck.
Neither side looked particularly dangerous from open play but as the half ticked towards a conclusion, Heaton was again called into action after a short corner from Paulinho was laid off to Eriksen by Mason and his shot took a deflection but was well saved.
It had been a quiet full Premier League debut for Vorm who had precious little to do for most of the opening 45 but he did well to palm over a bending effort from distance by Ings to keep the scores level heading into the interval.
Just two minutes into the second half we were forced into a further change at the back as Kyle Walker hobbled off injured. Ben Davies replaced him and went in at centre back with Chiriches moving to the right back slot.
Vorm had to be on his toes just before the hour mark when a swerving cross from Ings almost dipped under the crossbar but clear-cut chances remained at a premium.
It seemed to spur the home side on though as they nudged us deeper towards our own goal and pumped several dangerous balls into the box.
Erik Lamela replaced Chadli in an attempt to claw back the momentum and it almost immediately had the desired effect when he found Eriksen, who wriggled towards goal but blazed a shot over the bar on the angle.
The pendulum swung back our way as Kane did brilliantly a minute a later to cut in from the byline, though somehow his cross evaded everyone and found its way to the lurking Rose. He took aim from 30 yards but fired high and wide.
Kane was the architect again minutes later, this time he slipped in Paulinho who galloped towards the Burnley goal but made a mess of his shot which went well wide of the target.
There was only one more chance of note and that fell to Burnley in the 90th minute as substitute Lukas Jutkiewicz flicked on for George Boyd to aim a header just wide, although Vorm had it covered.
Mauricio Pochettino said
“It was a tough game, we fought hard and the second half was good but not enough to win,” said Mauricio.
“We created some chances but there is a balance we want after Leicester when we conceded three goals.
“I was pleased not to concede a goal but at the same time we dropped two points and that’s difficult, but we have to look forward, to fight in our next seven games and try to finish as high as possible.”
Harry Kane captained the team for the first time in Jan and Hugo’s absence. “He deserved it,” added Mauricio.
Burnley: Heaton; Trippier, Duff, Shackell (c), Mee; Boyd, Jones, Arfield, Barnes; Ings, Vokes (Jutkeiwicz, 75). Substitutes (not used): Gilks, Keane, Ward, Kightly, Sordell, Ulvestad.
Spurs: Vorm, Walker (Davies, 47), Chiriches, Dier, Rose; Bentaleb, Mason (Townsend, 83); Chadli (Lamela, 64), Eriksen, Paulinho, Kane (c). Substitutes (not used): Friedel, Dembele, Stambouli, Soldado.
Yellow cards: Burnley – Trippier, Mee.
Referee: Martin Atkinson.