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Penalty proves costly against Chelsea - match report and debrief

Spurs 0-1 Chelsea

Thu 04 February 2021, 21:59|Tottenham Hotspur

We suffered our third Premier League defeat in eight days as a first-half penalty was enough to settle the game in Chelsea’s favour on Thursday evening.

In teaming rain at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, the only goal of the contest came in the 24th minute when Eric Dier upended Timo Werner inside the area, referee Andre Marriner pointed to the spot and Jorginho stepped up for the visitors to convert the penalty past Hugo Lloris.

It was a below-par performance from us in the first half, managing just the one shot on target in the sixth minute when Heung-Min Son fired straight at Edouard Mendy and we were very much second best. While we did improve after the interval, it was Chelsea with the better chances and they went close on a number of occasions, most notably in the 76th minute when Mason Mount hit a low left-foot shot that was heading for the far corner until Lloris stuck out a strong hand to push the ball away.

A late flurry of chances almost saw us salvage a point in the closing stages and Carlos Vinicius probably should have done better three minutes from time when he met Serge Aurier’s cross at the back post but guided his header just wide. Son then fired over the bar from the edge of the area in stoppage time and with that went our last chance of avoiding a third straight league defeat for the first time in eight years.

A difficult derby day

The final statistics will show that both sides only had two shots on target, but that doesn’t tell the whole story on what was a disappointing night for us. Chelsea went on to have 18 shots at goal to our seven and enjoyed 58 per cent possession, a figure which was quite a bit higher at half-time as we really struggled to find our groove in the opening 45 minutes.

In fact, there were only 10 seconds on the clock when the visitors had the first sight of goal, Werner heading just over from Cesar Azpilicueta’s deep pass. Our response was a positive one with Son finishing off a swift counter with a low drive at Mendy, but that was as good as it got for us in the first half.

The goal came after Werner latched onto a ball from deep and was tussling for possession inside the area with Dier, who fell to the ground and as the ball ran loose, he attempted to sweep clear while still grounded but caught Werner in the process. Lloris went the right way but couldn’t get to Jorginho’s spot-kick.

We showed a much greater intensity and urgency in our play after the interval, but that didn’t stop the visitors carving out chances and we needed a superb intervention from Serge Aurier to prevent us going 2-0 down as Mount burst through the middle of the park and played in Werner, who had the ball taken off his foot by our right-back as he was about to shoot from eight yards out.

Lloris went in bravely right at the feet of Christian Pulisic in the 66th minute, punching away on the edge of his six-yard box from Mount’s clipped pass, Mateo Kovacic raced through midfield right to the edge of our area before poking wide and then Mount went closest of all, only to be denied by Lloris.

Despite the pattern of the game, we almost nicked at point at the end. With 11 minutes left, substitute Erik Lamela’s low curling effort was saved to his right by Mendy, Vinicius then had that great opportunity but headed wide and Son had a rare sight of goal in the final seconds, but couldn’t keep his shot down.

It was our first Premier League derby defeat in nine matches (W3 D5), the first in almost a year since losing to Chelsea in February, 2020.

Our team news saw three changes from the defeat at Brighton on Sunday with Aurier, Dier and Vinicius coming in for Davinson Sanchez, Joe Rodon and Gareth Bale. It was a first Premier League start for striker Vinicius.

Reaction on Spurs TV

'In the second half, I believe we deserved more'

Jose told Spurs TV after the game: "The first half wasn’t easy. They were dominating us, they created some imbalance in our left side, it wasn’t easy. But the reality is that they scored on that penalty. After that, no problems, no panic, no big chances.

"The game was more in their hands in the first half, but nothing coming out of that. In the second half, completely different. We were the best team, we pressed higher, recovered the ball faster, getting more players into attacking areas and in the second half, I believe we deserved more than what we got."

Spurs 0-1 Chelsea

Spurs (4-2-3-1): Lloris (c), Aurier, Alderweireld, Dier, Davies, Hojbjerg, Sissoko, Ndombele (Lamela 69), Bergwijn (Lucas 69), Son, Vinicius. Substitutes (not used): Hart, Doherty, Rodon, Sanchez, Tanganga, Winks, Bale.

Chelsea (3-4-2-1): Mendy, Azpilicueta (c), Thiago Silva (Christensen 36), Rudiger, James, Jorginho, Kovacic (Kante 74), Alonso, Mount, Hudson-Odoi (Pulisic 65), Werner. Substitutes (not used): Arrizabalaga, Abraham, Giroud, Chilwell, Ziyech, Emerson.

Match data

Goal: Chelsea – Jorginho 24 (pen).

Yellow cards: Spurs – Alderweireld, Hojbjerg; Chelsea – Pulisic, Kante, Azpilicueta.

Referee: Andre Marriner.

Venue: Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

Weather: Heavy rain, gentle breeze, seven degrees.