Tottenham Hotspur

Postecoglou’s angry two-word message, Bissouma blow – 5 things spotted in Wolves vs Tottenham

Here are five things we spotted in Tottenham’s late 2-1 Premier League defeat against Wolves at Molineux on Saturday afternoon


Phillips made to wait

Ashley Phillips will have to wait a little while longer to make his full Tottenham Hotspur debut after missing out on Ange Postecoglou’s XI to face Wolves. Losing Cristian Romero to suspension and Micky van de Ven to injury in

Following Monday’s 4-1 loss to Chelsea at home, the Australian would inevitably have to choose a new defensive combination for the match in the West Midlands.

After making a strong impression during his playing time against Chelsea, Ben Davies, making his injury comeback, was set to start alongside the veteran Tottenham defender Eric Dier.Phillips was named on the bench even though many predicted he would make his debut, even though he was behind Dier in the center-back pecking order and looked like the ideal fit because there were no other senior center-backs available.

The ex-Blackburn Rovers man was joined in the dugout by academy ace Alfie Dorrington, who was named in the senior matchday squad for the very first time after an excellent season with Spurs’ youngsters.

That Kulusevski and Porro combo

Amid questions over how Tottenham would react after losing four influential players for Saturday’s game at Wolves, Postecoglou’s men made the perfect start to the contest. Taking the lead through Brennan Johnson’s first goal for the club, it was a scintillating move that was finished off by the summer signing.

Pedro Porro completely confused his opponent with a great dummy after Pape Matar Sarr spread the ball out to the right flank, resulting in Dejan Kulusevski winning possession of the ball. Subsequently, the Swede executed an exquisite drag-back and flick to find Porro, who placed the ball on a plate for Johnson to score from close range.

Although Johnson will be credited for the goal and Kulusevski for his brilliant flick, Porro should also receive a lot of praise for his dummy and link-up play with the Swede, which were crucial to the outcome. The Spanish player and Kulusevski seem to be developing a good rapport as they occasionally play well together down the right flank against Wolves.

Angry Ange

Leading 1-0 thanks to Johnson’s third-minute goal, Spurs struggled to cause Wolves problems after that as the hosts took the game to them. Tottenham were rather passive at times, with the absence of four key players, especially James Maddison who makes them tick in the final third, certainly disrupting them.

Postecoglou was not pleased with what he saw in front of him after several passes around the back without trying to move the ball forward. The 58-year-old was yelling at his players to “get up” in the 38th minute of the match as they were fumbling with the ball in the back.

After making his point clear to his team, they followed his instructions to the letter and began to move the project along a little more.

Bissouma booking

Yves Bissouma will now be absent for Tottenham’s match against Aston Villa after the international break after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season. Walking the disciplinary tightrope for quite some time, the Mal international was cautioned towards the end of the first half for a foul on Mario Lemina.

It was rather a soft yellow card but referee Tim Robinson viewed it as an offense and duly brandished his card. Now set to miss a big game for Tottenham, some fans may perhaps be thankful that his fifth booking of the

season ended at Molineux rather than the following game, which would have prevented him from playing against Man City.

Halfway through the second half, there appeared to be a chance that Bissouma would be sent off for a challenge outside the box. Fortunately for Spurs, he did not receive his second yellow of the match, which would have been a replay of his red card against Luton Town one month prior. The substitution of Giovani Lo Celso for the former Brighton & Hove Albion in the closing minutes did not come as a surprise.

Devastating defeat

Heading into Monday’s game against Chelsea unbeaten following an excellent start to the campaign, Spurs brought down the curtain on the week with two defeats. Looking good for all three points following Johnson’s early strike, Wolves claimed the win at the death after stoppage-time goals from Pablo Sarabia and Mario Lemina.

Despite having plenty of possession throughout the match, Wolves failed to really test Spurs goalkeeper Guglielmo Vicario despite creating several opportunities. Before Sarabia’s incredible equalizer, Tottenham appeared to be on track to secure all three points at Molineux, something that fellow top-four rivals Man City and Newcastle United had not accomplished.

But after that cruel conclusion, that was not to be. Postecoglou and Spurs, who fared so well for the most part of the match despite missing four of their main players, will now take a break for the international fixtures before playing Aston Villa later in the month.

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