Kieran Trippier's performances against Watford in profile
10 April 2017|Tottenham Hotspur
Half of Kieran Trippier's Premier League starts for us to date have come against Watford – and every single time he's made a big impact.
By strange co-incidence, of the four meetings with the Hornets we've had since they returned to the top flight in 2015, the former Burnley right-back has featured every time.
Many will remember his winner in the home fixture in February, 2016, yet in truth his contributions against Watford go far beyond that, to the extent that he's bagged either a goal or assist in all four fixtures, most recently supplying the cross that led to Heung-Min Son's final goal of Saturday's fine 4-0 win at White Hart Lane.
So what does ‘Trips’ himself make of his record against them?
“It’s one of those,” he told us. “Obviously the past four games (against Watford) I’ve played but I try to do my best for my team-mates whenever I’m called upon.
“Whenever I got the nod from the manager, whoever we’re playing against, I try to perform well for the team. Obviously I need to play well to try to keep the spot.”
Strangely enough, Kieran’s form in a Spurs shirt against Watford is in stark contrast to his past encounters with the Hornets. He played a combined total of seven games in the Championship against them for Barnsley and then Burnley – he even made his Burnley debut against them back in August, 2011 – but never tasted victory in any of those matches.
Oh, and he currently lives next door to Watford goalkeeper and former Spurs Heurelho Gomes!
Here’s a look at Kieran's record against the Hornets to date...
1. Watford 1-2 Spurs
December 28, 2015
Making his first Premier League start for us, having featured mainly in the cup competitions since his summer arrival from Burnley, Kieran was influential in our last-gasp win at Vicarage Road just after Christmas in 2015.
In a game recognised as being the first time we'd played with three at the back under Mauricio Pochettino, Trips and Danny Rose were tasked with getting forward down the flanks.
Erik Lamela's opener was cancelled out by Odion Ighalo during the game, before the hosts had Nathan Ake sent off. It looked like we'd be forced to share the spoils but, in the 90th minute, Kieran's cross at the second time of asking was flicked between the legs of Gomes by substitute Son to secure a memorable victory.
“I tried to put in as many crosses as I could for my team-mates,” he reflected afterwards. “The first one came back out, I got another opportunity and crossed to Sonny who produced a clever flick – happy days!”
Here's what Trips said to Spurs TV at Vicarage Road that day...
2. Spurs 1-0 Watford
February 6, 2016
Kieran's most memorable moment against Watford arrived on February 6, 2016, when he popped up with the goal that saw off the Hornets at White Hart Lane to maintain our push in the upper reaches of the table.
We dominated the game from start to finish but just couldn’t convert the chances we were creating.
However, our pressure finally told on 64 minutes with a wonderfully-worked strike. Harry Kane’s excellent touch on half-way sent Mousa Dembele surging towards goal, he knocked it wide for the supporting Dele Alli – on as a substitute just moments earlier – and he delivered a low cross from the left which found Trippier at the far post to rifle home his first Spurs goal and send the Lane crazy!
“Dele went down the left and I thought to myself ‘just run up the field, try to get on the back stick’,” he reflected at the time. “That’s what the manager wants to see, me playing as a right winger. It just fell to me and I was delighted to score my first goal for Tottenham.”
Take a look at Kieran’s post-match Spurs TV interview at the time...
3. Watford 1-4 Spurs
January 1, 2017
With Kyle Walker suspended, Kieran came in for his first league start of the season as we got the New Year off to a blistering start with a 4-1 win at Vicarage Road on January 1, 2017.
Kane put us 2-0 up inside 33 minutes and guess who supplied the assists for both goals! On 27 minutes, Trippier and Kane exchanged passes down the right before Kane peeled into the box and the right-back found him with a slide-rule pass. There was still work to do from a tight angle but the striker finished clinically.
It was the same combination for the second goal six minutes later as Dele chipped a pass out to Trippier, who whipped in a wonderful cross from the right and Kane showed the desire to get between Sebastian Prodl and Craig Cathcart to volley past Gomes from six yards. Dele added two more goals to our side of the scoreline while Younes Kaboul bundled home a late consolation for the hosts.
“Harry always tells me to get those early crosses in and he’s so positive,” Trips said. “Every ball that goes into the box, you see him go flying in and it’s no surprise to see him score twice.
“I try to put in as many crosses as I can at the right times and hopefully Harry can get on the end of them. Thankfully he did that today and we’re happy that we got the three points.”
4. Spurs 4-0 Watford
April 8, 2017
Starting in the Premier League for the second consecutive weekend after enjoying a winning return to former club Burnley the previous Saturday, Kieran put in a tremendous performance to help us blow Watford away at White Hart Lane.
It was his composed passing out from the back which started the move that led to Dele lashing home the opener from 25 yards, with Eric Dier and Son adding their own names to the scoresheet before half-time.
Then, on 55 minutes, that old Trippier-Son combination paid dividends once more as Kieran bagged the assist for goal number four. Christian Eriksen threaded a ball down the right flank for him and his deep cross was volleyed home at the back post by Son for his second of the game.
Another delicious delivery from Kieran saw Son volley against the crossbar in the closing stages, but we'd already done more than enough to win the game and keep up the pressure on Premier League leaders Chelsea.
“It was difficult,” Trips admitted. “When teams come to the Lane they know how difficult it is to play here and to play against a team like us. They were playing with a back six at times and it was hard to break them down at first, but then we started moving the ball quicker in the central midfield area, got the first goal and then everything just took off from there really.”