Tottenham progress to the FA Cup fifth round with a 4-1 win against Wycombe on a tough night at Adams Park.
Jose Mourinho and his Spurs side travelled west to bottom placed Championship team Wycombe Wanderers, in a fourth round FA Cup fixture – with the winner set to face Everton at Goodison Park.
The home side had not played a game in any competition since the 9th of January in their 4-1 beating of Preston North End in the third round of the cup.
Manager Gareth Ainsworth made two changes from their win against the Lancashire side last time out, with Jack Grimmer and Curtis Thompson coming into the starting XI.
And opted for a slight change in formation, with the wingers dropping deeper to set-up as a 4-2-3-1 instead of a 4-3-3.
Mourinho also made changes to the squad that won at Brammall Lane, with only Ben Davies keeping his place in the team.
Tottenham’s formation was a 4-2-3-1 also, changing from a 3-4-3.
— Wycombe Wanderers (@wwfcofficial) January 25, 2021
𝗧𝗘𝗔𝗠 𝗡𝗘𝗪𝗦 🗒️ Hart, Tanganga, Sanchez, Alderweireld, Davies (C), Winks, Sissoko, Lamela, Bale, Lucas, Vinicius.
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) January 25, 2021
The game began and instantly the Premier League outfit were on the front foot – signalling their intent from the start.
Early chances from Erik Lamela and Lucas Moura saw Spurs earn two corners, which could not find the back of the net.
Despite their strong start, Ainsworth’s side started challenging.
Their first opportunity came in the 7th minute, when Admiral Muskwe headed towards goal at the near post, but goalkeeper Joe Hart was quick to tap it round the post.
The following corner almost resulted in a goal too, as left-back and Tottenham fan Joe Jacobson curled his cross towards the goal and came close to netting from the set-piece.
As Wycombe grew into the game, chances became harder to create for Spurs, with Gareth Bale hitting the side netting from an acute angle.
The Chairboys were not backing down against their opposition and eventually in the 25th minute, they broke the deadlock.
Uche Ikpeazu had been causing the Spurs defence problems, and his physical presence saw him push past Toby Alderweireld with ease and deliver a cross across goal.
Unable to clear the ball, a deflection fell to Fred Onyedinma who calmly tapped the ball into the bottom right corner of the net, putting the home team ahead.
Wanderers were holding their own against the bigger side.
This early setback spurred on Mourinho’s men.
10 minutes after the goal, Moussa Sissoko received a pass on the edge of the area, and his tame shot took a huge deflection, and beat Ryan Allsop in the Wycombe goal, but nailed the crossbar and fell into his hands.
Pressure continued and just before the 45th minute a quickly taken corner was passed to Lamela, who whipped in a cross to the head of Japhet Tanganga, who rattled the crossbar.
Inches away from his first Tottenham goal.
With three minutes of time added to the clock, Spurs were able to have one more opportunity, to gain some momentum going into the break.
And their efforts paid off.
Lucas Moura clipped in a dangerous cross that bounced before falling to Welsh winger Gareth Bale.
One-on-one with the goalkeeper, Bale tapped the ball over the head of Allsop, netting his fourth goal of the season.
𝗛𝗔𝗟𝗙-𝗧𝗜𝗠𝗘 ⏱️ @GarethBale11's equaliser sees us level at the break.
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) January 25, 2021
The second half began with Spurs continuing their domination of possession, and the introduction of Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg for Japhet Tanganga.
This changed the dynamic of Tottenham’s play, and made it even more difficult for the home side to break through.
Chances were a plenty for the North London side, with Lucas and Bale both coming close to putting their team in front – both of their shots travelling just wide of the post.
Despite their many opportunities, it was beginning to look less and less the away sides night.
With extra-time looming, the Portuguese boss brought on the big guns.
Hoping to end the game in 90 minutes, ensuring for fresh legs for the Premier League game against Liverpool in under a week.
Harry Kane, Heung-Min Son and Tanguy Ndombele all came on for the final 20 minutes of the match.
And their impact was evident.
As the legs of the Wycombe players began to tire, Spurs stepped up the intensity.
The goal finally came in the 86th minute, as Harry Kane’s low cross was cleared to the feet of Harry Winks, who curled the ball into a near empty net from the edge of the area.
A huge sigh of relief for Tottenham.
Heartbreak for Wycombe, who had fought so valiantly for so long.
The floodgates opened in the final few minutes and French midfielder Tanguy Ndombele was able to bag a brace and continue his goal scoring form from the Sheffield United match.
His first goal came from a lovely run into the box by Heung-Min Son in which the Korean played the ball towards Ndombele for a calm tap into the bottom right corner.
And then moments from the final whistle, Hojbjerg played a through ball towards the 24-year-old, who performed a fantastic piece of skill and then fired the ball towards the near-post.
Sending two defenders and the goalkeeper the wrong way.
The game ended 4-1 and despite their efforts, the class of Tottenham’s players made the difference, as they progress to the next round of the FA Cup.
Wycombe Wanderers’ next game will come against Brentford away in the Championship, as they focus on surviving relegation from the division.
Tottenham Hotspur on the other hand, face an out of form Liverpool at home on Thursday, in the hopes of changing the result from earlier on in the season and earning their first win against the Premier League Champions since 2017.
Match Report by Nathan Salmon