Tottenham bounce back from a disappointing draw to win 3-1 against Sheffield United at Bramall Lane.
Following their poor second half performance at home to Fulham in midweek, Tottenham looked to regain their winning form against Sheffield United, who had just won their first game of the season against Newcastle, in the match previous.
Before the game, Spurs placed 6th in the table, whereas United placed 20th, six points behind West Brom.
Chris Wilder made one change to his starting line-up that beat Steve Bruce’s Newcastle – with Enda Stevens replacing an injured Ben Osborn.
Jose Mourinho, however, made three changes to the side that drew in midweek, and also changed the formation from 4-2-3-1 to 3-4-3.
Welsh internationals Joe Rodon and Ben Davies replaced Davinson Sanchez and Harry Winks, as they joined Eric Dier in defence.
And Steven Bergwijn made his return to the team following a series of injuries and illness, as he made the starting XI ahead of Moussa Sissoko.
𝗧𝗘𝗔𝗠 𝗡𝗘𝗪𝗦 🗒️ Lloris (C), Aurier, Rodon, Dier, Davies, Reguilon, Hojbjerg, Ndombele, Bergwijn, Son, Kane
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) January 17, 2021
One change for the Blades. 🔁
Ends Stevens comes into LWB. Osborn & Mousset sit out today's game after picking up knocks.#SHUTOT 🔜
— Sheffield United (@SheffieldUnited) January 17, 2021
The game began with both sides looking to get a foothold early on.
It was Tottenham who had the first opportunity in this instance.
After four minutes, Steven Bergwijn had the first shot of the game, and fired it towards the top left corner, but Aaron Ramsdale tipped it over the bar for a corner.
The resulting set-piece was taken by Heung-Min Son, as players gathered round the goalkeeper.
His cross reached the near-post, and was met by the head of Serge Aurier, who nodded it past Ramsdale, putting his side 1-0 up inside five minutes.
This early lead gave Spurs the confidence to continue attacking.
Just two minutes after Aurier’s goal, Tanguy Ndombele and Harry Kane linked up nicely, leading to Kane finding his partner in crime, Son, putting him in on goal, one-on-one with the goalkeeper.
The Korean flicked the ball over the stranded keeper but was unlucky to hit the outside of the post, almost doubling their lead in a matter of minutes.
It took around 10 minutes for Sheffield United to earn their first opportunity of the game.
Oliver Burke dispossessed Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg in the Tottenham half and found some space behind the defence.
His left-footed effort was quickly blocked by Eric Dier and wide for a corner.
The game calmed following this, and neither team created any real opportunities until later on in the half.
Although the away side held the majority of possession, they did allow Chris Wilder’s men a few opportunities.
However, they were shots from outside of the area, and Lloris saved them comfortably.
So often in previous games Tottenham have been unable to see out games, and have lost points several times this season, conceding late goals.
Spurs were able to capitalise on their opportunities this time however, as Hojbjerg dispossessed Oliver Norwood in the home team’s half.
He played the ball to Harry Kane, who turned towards Ramsdale in goal, and curled a strike towards the bottom right corner, from the edge of the box, making it 2-0 to the North London outfit in the 40th minute.
The first half finished 2-0 and Mourinho’s men were looking dangerous.
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) January 17, 2021
As the second half began, the Blades looked to quickly find their way back into the game.
A minute into the half, Enda Stevens delivered a cross to the back post, which was met by opposite wing-back Jayden Bogle, but was high over the bar.
This did not stop the home side though, as they continued their pressure on the Spurs defence.
Although, the attackers of Kane, Son and Bergwijn continued to threaten on the counter-attack, the South Yorkshire side finally managed a goal in the 59th minute, when John Fleck delivered a fantastic left footed cross into the box which was met by the head of David McGoldrick and glanced into the bottom right corner.
Which gave Sheffield United a glimmer of hope.
This lasted just three minutes.
Spurs answered back, and they answered in style.
Tanguy Ndombele passed the ball back to Bergwijn on the edge of the box, and then made a delightful run.
The Dutch winger clipped the ball back to Ndombele who looked in an impossible position to score, but with a right-footed shot with the outside of his foot, he lobbed Aaron Ramsdale, hitting the post as it crossed the line – putting Tottenham two goals to the good once again.
With just under half an hour left to play, Spurs looked comfortable and prevented any more opportunities for United, despite their efforts.
The away team’s chances were very few as well, as they maintained their lead and the game ended 3-1.
This win puts Tottenham Hotspur 5th in the league, and only four points behind Manchester United in the top spot.
It is also the first time Spurs have won at Bramall Lane since 1997, and Harry Kane is just one goal behind Bobby Smith in becoming the second top goal scorer of all time for the club, with Jimmy Greaves in first.
Their next game is in the FA Cup fourth round against Wycombe, which will take place on the 25th of January.
For Sheffield United, they play Plymouth Argyle in the same round of the competition on the 23rd as they look to regain momentum from their win against Newcastle.
Overall, it was another good result for Spurs, and they are still very much in the running with the league leaders at the top of the table.
And Tanguy Ndombele was phenomenal.