34 days after the original game was due to take place, Leicester City and Tottenham Hotspur finally met at the King Power Stadium after the first match was postponed due to Covid and injuries in the Leicester side. Games being called off due to injuries and Covid had drawn differing reactions from both Brendan Rodgers and Antonio Conte, but the game showed no ill effects as it was frantic, fast-paced and ultimately a sensational ending saw Steven Bergwijn give Tottenham three points.
Stoppage Time Sees Steven Bergwijn Give Tottenham Three Points
Wasteful Tottenham Almost Made to Pay
Conte made an interesting selection in his midfield, playing all three of his more defensive players in Oliver Skipp, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Harry Winks, meaning it was to be seen which of the three would be played further forward. And early impressions suggested that player would be Skipp, who was on the right of the midfield and ahead of his two teammates.
Tottenham started the game the brighter of the two sides with Sergio Reguilon causing all sorts of problems down the Leicester left. Spurs’ midfield three were dictating the play and moving the ball quickly but chance after chance came along and was squandered. Harry Kane powered a header against the bar that you would have expected him to score and had already seen a shot cleared off the line moments earlier.
Davinson Sanchez was next to miss the target when he headed a cross tamely wide. Leicester showed Spurs how to make the most of your chances when Patson Daka neatly finished to give the hosts the lead. It was hard to fathom how Spurs were behind but behind they were and needed to find a response. They thought they had equalised when Skipp and Lucas combined and, when Schmeichel came out, the ball fell to Hojbjerg who fired at goal only for a sensational block by Marc Albrighton to keep Spurs out once more. When you give Kane chances, however, he will make you pay and the game was soon level.
Winks played a precise pass over the top to Kane who timed his run to perfection and there would be no VAR intervention on this occasion, as Kane turned Caglar Soyuncu inside out and finished with his left foot off the post. It was nothing less than Tottenham deserved and they continued to attack at pace. Unbelievably, Kane managed to blaze over the bar when put clean through by Lucas and missed the chance to go in at the break ahead, but it left the match finely poised despite Spurs’ 14 attempts on goal.
Despite Spurs getting joy down the left through Reguilon in particular, Emerson Royal on the right struggled to make an impact on the game and Conte made a change – bringing on Matt Doherty, who nearly made a quick impact on proceedings. He found acres of space on the wide right and played in a hanging cross that fell to Reguilon who turned but his shot was blocked. Doherty then came onto the ball on the edge of the area, but his low and curling left footed effort was wide of the target.
Japhet Tanganga stung the hands of Schmeichel, whilst Kane was also reduced to long-range efforts that never found the target. Spurs continued to be dominant but Leicester started to threaten on the counter-attack.
Counter-Attacking Leicester City
As Tottenham’s intensity started to wane after 70 minutes, which was not surprising considering the pressing and pace they had played the game at, Rodgers started to sense that counter-attacks might give his side a way to take back the lead. And in the 75th minute, that sense proved to be well founded.
Harvey Barnes had not long entered the field of play when he played in James Maddison whose shot was deflected by Tanganga onto the post and Spurs and Conte were left scratching their heads as to how they found themselves behind once more. It could have got worse for Spurs late on when Barnes found space but Hojbjerg blocked the shot with a last ditch challenge. Tottenham went into the game with the chance to move above Arsenal in the table and Conte sent on Steven Bergwijn and Giovani Lo Celso to try and rescue a point that a should have already been three points much earlier.
Super Steven Bergwijn
With five minutes added on, it appeared that Tottenham would be left licking their wounds for the wasted chances but Bergwijn was the hero. Hojbjerg hit a perfectly flighted ball over to Doherty and when the ball ricocheted it fell to Bergwijn who sent the away fans delirious as he fired home.
Leicester restarted on 95 minutes, but Youri Tielemans gave the ball straight to Spurs and Kane played the ball around the corner for Bergwijn to run onto. He went round Schmeichel and hit his shot in off the post. Tottenham took all three points and overall deserved the win but for Brendan Rodgers it was an infuriating end to a game that they failed to see out. The Leicester boss stood in stoney silence whilst Conte was ecstatic and remains unbeaten in all nine of his games in the Premier League as Spurs boss.
Tottenham moved into fifth place above Arsenal and are now closing in on fourth-placed West Ham United with three games in hand and could even start looking at third-placed Chelsea place who they sit eight points behind, but four games in hand. All of a sudden, Tottenham’s season is starting to look that much brighter and the work Conte has done so far cannot be ignored.
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