23 years…23 seasons…so much time…no victory against Manchester United for Spurs…Once we was even 2 nil up at half time and ended up losing 5-2.I-pod boy goalie, Ben Foster (then with United) denied us winning the League Cup a couple of years ago thanks to a consulting an I-pod before O’Hara struck his predictable effort of a penalty. What about Nani’s cheeky con trick against Gomes?…I could go on and on.
It was the big Spurs Hoodoo, bigger even than beating Arsenal. I would start such days off with a bit of banter with United fans. They would also try soft diplomacy but in essence remained patronizing. “It aint going to happen” “Not this Year” “You are progressing but are not that good yet…” Spurs have also been seen as a bit of a prepping ground for United, look no further than Sherringham, Carrick and Berbatov. When Fergie cast his hawkish transfer eye in Bale and Modric a season ago my heart sank. I was relieved Modders finally went to Real Madrid and not Man Utd….And of course that Gareth Bale stayed put…
And so it came to be…On Saturday 29th September in this grand year of 2012…The sly old fox Fergie was out foxed by a counter part half his age. Andre Villas Boas may have taken over the helm at Spurs with serious shadows of doubt being cats over him but I for one was happy and relieved at his arrival. Harry, as much as I loved his chirpy character, ended up like a parody of himself, and tactically his lowest point was a home defeat at Norwich last season – a game which in my humble opinion cost Spurs that Champions League place. Its easy blaming Chelsea for winning it…but lets face it, they won it…and we lost that home game against the Canaries due to Harry’s lack of tactics. The writing was on the wall from then and AVB’s arrival has turned things around as far as tactics go. It’s not an easy task beating United at home, very few teams have done it since the Premier League began and maybe you can count them on one hand! Could any one have predicted Manchester City beating United 6-1 last season? And so it was, on that fateful day, 29th September 2012, when Tottenham took the dreaded trek to Old Trafford and Jan Vertongen, yes the one who turned down the Gooners for us, steamed through an ageing United defence to open up the scoring in just over a minute!
That goal stunned United.Pace was also the word with Gareth Bale and the second Spurs goal. It reminded me of his heroic feat against Inter a couple of seasons ago in The Champions League, we went from 4-1 down to 4-3, thanks to Gareth Bale, who breezed by Maicon, just like he flew by Rio Ferdinand. I am convinced Bale is somehow related to Usain Bolt. I can see an uncanny resemblance in terms of determination, pace and speed…And I hope Usain will now switch to Spurs from United…
The second half United work up and played some football. Bringing on Rooney for Giggs gave them 2 strikers upfront. Made sense and paid off with Nani’s goal. At 2-1 I had a feeling this was all beginning to slip. Again the lightening Spurs counter attack tore United defence to shreds. A combined team effort involving Bale and Defoe resulted in Dempsey netting his first goal for Spurs.
At 3-1 we could breath a sigh of relief but there was still nuff time to get through. United piled on the pressure and Shinji Kagawa scored a great one…suddenly those fears of being rinsed yet again came back.United fired attacking volley after attacking volley.
Fergie desperate to get a goal substituted Kagawa for Welbeck. This final throw of the dice felt like he was playing with four strikers. But the plan backfired. The Spurs box became congested with Man United shirts who lacked team work. Rooney, with an ego as big as Big Ben, messed up at least 2 chances where if he had passed to Van Pursie, United may have cruised in with a victory. But it was not to be…Rooney’s hunger to impress denied them victory…As the clock ticked onto 90 mins the refs assistant lifted the xtra time board at 4 mins…4 mins…4 dreaded mins…Fergie looked vexed…He obviously wanted more time…whats the saying “A game is not over until Fergie blows the whistle”…Even Lindergaard the goalie came up for the last effort….But it was not to be, and the score line finished Manchester United 2 Tottenham Hottest Spurs 3. After the match Fergie complained bitterly about not enough time being added on, even insisting if it had been they would have equalized or even won. I found this a weakhearted response. Don’t get me wrong, Fergie has achieved many things which very few managers in the world have achieved but of late he has become like a grumpy old man who is losing the plot. Spurs won fair and square…and like any game when one time wins another loses…unless its a draw of course 🙂 So I want to say it one last time, MANCHESTER UNITED 2 TOTTENHAM HOTTEST SPURS 3!!!