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Tottenham hotspur’s comeback win against Burnley show growing resilience

By Tajuddin
In Uncategorized
Jan 15th, 2015

Burnley and Tottenham

London ( Agencies + DIPLOMAT.SO) – When Spurs fell two goals behind early in their FA Cup third-round replay against Burnley, many fans might have been happy that the match wasn’t being televised.

What those who were outside White Hart Lane missed, though, was yet another comeback victory for Mauricio Pochettino’s team.

Burnley’s 2-0 lead was deserved as Spurs stumbled through the opening stages. Sean Dyche’s men attacked from the off and Marvin Sordell’s volley stunned the crowd at White Hart Lane. As usual when he plays, Younes Kaboul was at fault, being beaten in a straight sprint for a long ball.

A deflected free-kick beat Michel Vorm and Spurs were reeling.

The flaws in Kaboul and Vlad Chiriches’ defending were consistently exposed, but they managed to wrench back control from the flying Clarets.

There are few more maligned members of Tottenham’s team this season than Paulinho and Etienne Capoue. Both arriving in exchange for parts of the Gareth Bale bonanza, a combination of injury and poor form has conspired against their Spurs careers.

The fact that it was they who dragged Spurs back into this tie will confound some of their most vocal critics.

Roberto Soldado’s header set up Paulinho’s goal and Capoue’s thunderous strike made it 2-2 before half-time. A three-minute blitz from Danny Rose and Chiriches put Spurs in total control early in the second half and progress was secured.

Their ability to turn matches around, and to snatch victories when a draw seemed inevitable, is remarkable.

Given that this squad is virtually identical to last season’s, the credit must go mostly to the manager. Pochettino’s demanding training sessions are infamous, but the fitness levels they have produced more than justify them.

When Chelsea took the lead in their New Year’s Day fixture, few outside observers would have expected anything other than a procession from the Blues. Jose Mourinho teams don’t often lose from winning positions.

Rather than capitulating, Spurs blew Chelsea away in a remarkable victory.

The win against West Ham that began the season wasn’t a comeback in the traditional sense, but Spurs did manage to eke out a deserved victory despite playing most of the match with 10 men.

Spurs are into the League Cup semi-finals but only because of their stirring win over Nottingham Forest in the 3rd Round. Listless and trailing after an hour, Ryan Mason’s wonder goal sparked a fight-back as Spurs topped Forest 3-1.

Against Swansea, Burnley and Aston Villa, Spurs took three crucial points despite being under pressure. These are beatable teams to be sure, but Spurs did manage to beat them. So often, teams that should win fail to do so. The ability to take full points from winnable fixtures is what defines successful Premier League teams.

Only against Alan Pardew have Spurs failed to take at least one point after opening the scoring. Against both his Newcastle and Crystal Palace sides, Spurs took 1-0 leads but slipped to defeat.

When Roy Keane released his controversial autobiography last year, there was a section that made particularly difficult reading for Spurs fans.

His “Lads, it’s Tottenham” quote was widely reported, much to the amusement of rival fans. It struck a nerve among the White Hart Lane faithful, though, because it rang painfully true.

Throughout the Premier League era, too often Spurs have been a soft touch. They’ve always had talented, often brilliant players and been able to blow teams away but have struggled against aggressive and disciplined opposition.

Infamous defeats to Manchester United both home and away are the headline on a long list of defeats that have been linked to a questionable mentality.

That era in Tottenham’s history may be a mere afterthought soon.

Pochettino’s team have dropped some points after taking the lead this season. Against Arsenal, Nacer Chadli gave Spurs the lead before Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain restored parity. Against Sunderland in the League and Burnley in the cup, Spurs took the lead but were unable to hold on to win.

Usually by this point in the season, there is a long list of matches that Spurs should have won. While this season’s list is not blank, it is far shorter than it would normally be.

Pochettino has done the seemingly impossible and drilled an indefatigability into his team. Spurs don’t limp to lame defeats anymore. Even when they play poorly, and they’ve rarely played worse than in the loss to Crystal Palace, there is a belief that they can win.

This is something of an unquantifiable asset, but it’s something that is greatly valuable. If Spurs continue to push their opposition to the final whistle, they’ll surely continue to grow and move up the Premier League table.

This was supposed to be a season of transition. Expectations were lowered accordingly, but this remarkable habit may force Pochettino and the fans alike to raise them once more.

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