Paul Clement’s men were dogged in defence as they held Spurs to a goalless draw at Wembley on Saturday evening.
Swansea sat deep as Spurs controlled the first half. However, Pochettino’s men hardly created a good chance as Swansea held them at bay with a solid back 5 with 3 midfielders sitting in front.
Harry Kane was largely anonymous for Spurs, while Sissoko didn’t help his cause by offering nothing in a deep midfield role. Christian Eriksen had a poor day, creating little and making plenty of errors on the ball.
Heung-Min Son came the closest in the first half as he tried to emulate his midweek goal against Dortmund, attempting smash the ball between Fabianski and his near post. The Swansea keeper was wise to the ploy however and stuck out a hand to make a reflex save.
Spurs’ tempo was slow and deliberate, falling victim to the very tactic that enabled them to see off Dortmund on Wednesday night. You would have thought that they might be wary of opting for a possession based game plan, but Swansea had absolutely no interest and adventuring forward, and credit needs to be given to Clement’s side for a disciplined defensive performance, not something we are used to seeing from Swansea.
The second continued much the same as the first, with Spurs passing the ball around midfield in the hope of dragging the Swansea defence out of shape.
However Spurs could not find the key to the lock, and with both Dele and Eriksen off their game, Tottenham failed to create any meaningful chances.
As the clock began to wind down, Spurs became more animated. However Swansea sat on the edge of their box with 10 men behind the ball, and there was no getting through.
Swansea executed a perfect game plan against Spurs, who need to start using the extra width at Wembley to their advantage. Unfortunately for Pochettino, he possesses a squad currently without any out and out wingers and this really showed.
A lack of quality in final third also hampered their ability to make use of Llorente’s considerable aerial ability once he came on late into the 2nd half.
All in all it was a fantastic performance from Swansea, who should take confidence in their ability to get vital points away from home this season.
Meanwhile Pochettino needs to find away to get quality service into the box when teams like Swansea sit deep against them. One does not simply pass their way through a 10 man back division.
Man of the Match: It’s hard to pick out a single player from this game, while Spurs were poor, Swansea were absolutely superb defensively from Knaughton on the right to Olsson on the left. Therefore, 90maat is giving the Swansea defence the MOM award!
Written by Chris Wyles