Spurs 1-0 Bournemouth - report from Wembley
Sat 14 October 2017, 17:05|Tottenham Hotspur
Our first-ever Premier League win at Wembley Stadium was achieved on Saturday afternoon thanks to Christian Eriksen’s second-half strike.
The Danish midfielder produced a calm finish from 18 yards just two minutes after half-time and it was enough to give us maximum league points for the first time at our temporary home, following draws against Swansea City and Burnley and a defeat by Chelsea.
The first half was a disappointing affair, as visitors Bournemouth pulled all 10 players back behind the ball when not in possession and we struggled to penetrate their defence. Eriksen and Dele Alli had efforts blocked while Asmir Begovic made a good save to deny Harry Kane, while at the other end, we needed a great block by Davinson Sanchez to deny Junior Stanislas and a superb close-range save from Hugo Lloris – keeping out a corner which hit Eric Dier and was heading in - to keep the game goalless at the interval.
But we wasted no time in the second half and went in front on 47 minutes when Heung-Min Son played in Eriksen and he advanced into the area before sending a slide-rule shot past Begovic and into the far corner.
A good spell followed for us and the Cherries goalkeeper was forced into making a great double save to prevent Kane from extending our lead, but there was always a threat from Bournemouth and Lloris was called upon to keep out former Spur Jermain Defoe’s chance in the 78th minute, just moments after he had come off the bench.
In the closing stages, Dier had an effort blocked by Steve Cook from 12 yards, Dele just headed wide after great work by Moussa Sissoko and fellow substitute Georges-Kevin Nkoudou was upended on the edge of the area in stoppage time by Begovic when clean through. The keeper saved Eriksen’s effort from the resulting free-kick, but the whistle blew seconds later to ensure we took the three points.
Mauricio Pochettino made one change to the team that started against Huddersfield Town last time out in the Premier League - Son coming in for Ben Davies, who missed out through illness. Bournemouth started with two of our former Academy graduates in their line-up in Adam Smith and Charlie Daniels, with Defoe on the bench.
Save: super stop from Lloris – 21mins
The early stages of the game followed a familiar pattern to home games this season, with us enjoying plenty of possession but failing to break through a packed defence. Eriksen and Dele had glimpses of goal in the opening quarter-of-an-hour but saw efforts blocked by Simon Francis and Simon Cook respectively, while Dele flicked Eriksen’s drilled cross over the bar before the visitors almost opened the scoring. First Smith’s cut back found Stanislas unmarked just inside the area but his shot deflected off Sanchez for a corner. That was cleared for another corner, which this time flicked goalwards off Dier but Lloris made a superb instinctive save on his goal-line before we hacked clear.
Above: Heung-Min Son gets away from Adam Smith.
Chance: Kane denied by Begovic – 33mins
Chances were few and far between at either end, but we did go close on 33 minutes after some great pressure on the Bournemouth midfield saw us win possession high up the pitch. Eriksen clipped the ball over the defence for Kane but his shot into the ground was parried away by Begovic and from the corner, Toby Alderweireld headed over. That was pretty much it in terms of goalscoring opportunities for the half and we went in goalless at the break.
Goal: Spurs 1-0 Bournemouth – Christian Eriksen – 47mins
Having laboured at times in the first period, we were quickly out of the blocks after half-time and grabbed the lead just two minutes in. Son surged goalwards from the right flank and laid a pass in to Eriksen, bursting from midfield. He benefitted from a fortunate richochet off Francis on the edge of the area, but then produced a measured finish into the bottom corner to give us a deserved lead. Kane headed Kieran Trippier’s cross into the net 11 minutes later, but the assistant’s flag was correctly up for off-side.
Saves: Begovic twice keeps out Kane – 62mins
The goal certainly changed the complexion of the game as the confidence returned to our play and we were starting to carve out good chances. Just after the hour mark, Harry Winks found Kane with a lovely ball over the top, the England striker delayed his shot but then Begovic was out quickly to block. Dele quickly returned the loose ball back in to Kane on the edge of the six-yard box, but the Cherries’ goalkeeper saved again before Bournemouth scrambled clear.
Chance: late drama but no goals – 90+7mins
The visitors sent on Defoe and Jordon Ibe as they searched for an equaliser and it almost paid dividends as the latter played in the former Spur, but Lloris saved well low down with his feet in the 78th minute. Two minutes from time, Trippier and Eriksen combined to set up Dier, whose shot from 12 yards was blocked by Cook for a corner. And deep into stoppage time, Sissoko released Nkoudou in on goal, but he was brought down by Begovic right on the edge of the area. It was just a yellow card for the goalkeeper, who then saved Eriksen’s free-kick, but that was the last action of the game.
Mauricio Pochettino said
"We deserved to win in the end and the performance was enough to take the three points. It’s always tough. In the first half we dominated the game but we made a mistake in our positional game and set-up when we had the ball but in the second half, we fixed that situation, moved the ball quicker and found better space. They tried to play (on the) counter-attack, they were deep. The performance was good, enough to win."
Christian Eriksen said
"We deserved the win, 100 per cent. We had chances, they had their chances in the first half, Hugo saved one and the one Sanchez blocked, those were their chances. We were better on the ball in the second half and won the ball back in better positions so the switches made a difference. It was a very important win for us and all the people outside. It meant a lot, a first Premier League win at Wembley. It wasn’t the most beautiful game we’ve played but we have the three points and we’re all really happy about it."
Spurs (4-2-3-1): Lloris (c), Trippier, Alderweireld, Sanchez, Vertonghen, Dier, Winks, Son (Sissoko 75), Dele (Nkoudou 90+1), Eriksen, Kane (Llorente 85). Substitutes (not used): Vorm, Aurier, Walker-Peters, Foyth.
Bournemouth (5-4-1): Begovic, Smith (Defoe 75), Francis (c), Ake, Cook S, Daniels, Stanislas (Ibe 75), Cook L (Mousset 84), Surman, Gosling, King. Substitutes (not used): Boruc, Pugh, Arter, Afobe.
Goal: Spurs – Eriksen 47.
Yellow cards: Spurs – Vertonghen; Bournemouth – Cook, Smith, Begovic.
Referee: Bobby Madley.
Man of the match
Following his winning goal, it was Christian Eriksen who was named Man of the Match by our supporters. The midfielder took 49 per cent of the votes on social media.
It’s a return to Champions League action next as we visit Spain for a mouth-watering Group H clash with Real Madrid on Tuesday.
It will be a top-of-the-table fixture, with Real having also won both their opening matches in the group, beating APOEL 3-0 at the Bernabeu before a 3-1 away win over Borussia Dortmund on matchday two.
Kick-off is at 7.45pm UK time.