Son stars as Spurs smash four past Palace
Tottenham produce a stunning opening 45 minutes to brush aside their London rivals and net only their second win of the season
15 September, 2019 — By Dan Carrier at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
FA Premier League
SPURS 4 (Son, 10, 23 Van Aanholt 21 OG, Lamela 42)
CRYSTAL PALACE 0
SINCE the final whistle went in the Champions League final three months ago, Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino has had to fend off questions about his top players seeking pastures new.
With heads being turned, it has clearly been a frustrating time for Pochettino – but now, with transfer windows closed, he can get on with coaching a squad who know where they are going to work each morning.
Speaking after his players brushed aside high-flying Crystal Palace on Saturday, Pochettino accepted transfer speculation had upset the squads delicate equilibrium. He said: “I think that showed the team was unsettled, and when the team is unsettled it is so difficult in the way you want to perform.
“I am not complaining. It is only that in football it is so easy to discuss situations and when the focus wasn’t to play football or to try to improve it is not easy to play. When you are focused, it shows in the first-half performance of the team. I am so happy to recover that feeling. Now we will keep pushing. It is the first step.”
Palace must be sick of the sight of Spurs: Roy Hodgson’s side have started the season well, taking all three points on the road at Manchester United and before today conceding just two goals. They were in form and started the day as London’s top club, nestling in fourth place.
But this was their eighth straight league defeat to Spurs and within the first minute of the whistle blowing the tone was set. A ball was hoiked forward for Heung-Min Son to chase, putting Palace’s centre-backs under scrutiny, and from then on in in it was one way traffic.
Son bagged his first on 10 minutes, working space on the right before cutting back across the face of the goal and tucking home neatly with his left. Minutes later, the bustling, impressive Serge Aurier had powered down the right and his firm, low cross was turned past his own goalkeeper by Patrick van Aanholt.
And it was Aurier and Son who made any slim chance of Palace finding a toe-hold back in the game unlikely: two minutes after van Aanholt’s calamity, Aurier broke clear on the right and delivered an inch-perfect cross to the back post. The ball hung beautifully and Son steadied himself before lashing home a perfect volley. Erik Lamela’s simple tap in, moments before half time, gave the score line the sheen Pochettino’s players deserved.
And the Tottenham manager said the performance illustrated his squads potential after their stuttering start to the season. He said: “If we show this intensity in every game, we can win big things.”
Spurs: Lloris, Aurier, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Rose (davies 78) Sissoko, Winks (Ndombele 67) Lamela, Eriksen, Son, Kane (Moura, 85)
Subs not used: Gazzaniga, Dele, Dier, Wanyama.
Crystal Palace: Guaita, Ward, Cahill, Sakho, Van aanholt, Milivojevic, Schlupp, Kouyate (McCarthy 76) Townsend (Camarasa 85) Zaha Ayew (Benteke 85).
Subs not used: Hennessey, Tomkins, Riedewald, Meyer.