Arsenal-Spurs: Guns Stunned
Both Arsenal and Spurs fans watched in disbelief as a 4-4 stale mate was grabbed in the last second by Spurs as part of yet another thrilling North London Derby.
Spurs started brilliantly in the first half. They kept control of the ball for the first 25 minutes. Gareth Bale nearly kicked off proceedings nice and early by making an assertive run into the box and taking a shot. However, the ball ricocheted off the left post and went behind. Arsenal were safe...for now.
Then at 13 minutes, Spurs fans jumped with excitement as David Bentley whacked a blinder of a shot from about 45 yards out into the goal.
A butterfingered Manual "Blunder" Almunia let it slip out of his hands.
Yeh, blame the rain all you want Gooners.
Still, it always was inevitable that Arsenal would steal one back for the home fans under penalty of death. They did so by targeting Spurs' continuing defence weakness during set pieces.
A corner from, off form as of late, van Persie sent the ball (flying emirates by the way) towards a tall Silvestre, who jumped in front of both Jenas and Gomes and made a fine header into the net at 37 minutes. All was square, surprisingly, at a round stadium.
The moment the second half started, Spurs just deflated and returned to their old blundering habits. About 45-50 seconds into the half, and Spurs found themselves trailing 2-1 after a previous 45 minute dose of optimism.
Van Persie and Gallas created a great goal between them from a set piece. The ball inched past a fully-stretched (but not stretched enough if you ask me) Gomes after a glancing header from Gallas.
After Spurs failed to clear another ball from the defence, Adebayor had the chance to make an impact and leave an even more sour taste in Spurs' mouths. He swiped at the ball, but it just edged wide at the post.
At 64 minutes, Spurs mistakes had cost them again. A failed offside trap caused a wonderful lob to split the defence open and leave the young Samir Nasri in a great position to score. He flicked the ball over Gomes, but it was going to go behind the post. Luckily, Adebayor was there to beat defender Alan Hutton and hit the ball home.
A two goal defecit now subdued Spurs' joy. Roman Pavlyuchenko was replaced by Darren Bent and earlier on, Gareth Bale was replaced by Aaron Lennon.
Darren Bent did his bit to help reduce Arsenal's lead to a slim one goal. Huddlestone took a rocket propelled shot, but was denied by Almunia.
Again, the ball rebounded off him and into the path of an eagle-eyed Bent who mapped out Arsenal's reaction to the attack and whacked in the second goal on 67 minutes, to raise Spurs hopes once again.
Of course, it wouldn't be a proper Spurs match if the other team didn't score again after a Spurs goal.
Hutton mysteriously gave the ball away as part of a rare sleep episode. Nasri quickly took advantage of this. He also decided to run away with the ball afterwards, chipping it over Gomes in order to be directed into the goal by Adebayor with Hutton on top of him.
Arsenal were still grinding away at the Spurs defence and had ten more perfect chances to score. Each one even more hard to forgive them messing up than the last.
Chris Gunter went on to replace Hutton for the last few minutes. Didn't influence the next goal though. Jenas made a run all by himself and curled in a nice shot to make it 4-3.
A well-timed shot from hamster-faced Luka Modric nearly went down in Spurs history, but Almunia's goal post managed to keep it out.
Suddenly, at the last second, Aaron Lennon, who for once, managed to launch a few crosses higher than the Arsenal defenders' knees during his time on the pitch, tapped in the equaliser to get Spurs another point.
Spurs still remain bottom of the league. But we shall see what happens on Saturday when Spurs are back on home turf as they face Liverpool.
3 points? Comments please :).
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