The Tuckster shares his thoughts on a very entertaining draw with Spurs at Carrow Road…
After the Luton debacle, the manager and supporters alike were demanding a positive reaction.
With nine changes to the side for the visit of Spurs and the favoured first eleven all starting it would be up to those lads to respond.
Right from the start, the City side were at it. The midfield dynamos of Johnson and Tettey were biting into every tackle and not giving the Spurs players a chance to settle into any sort of rhythm.
With Bale and Lennon on the flanks there was plenty of pace in the visitor’s side but by and large Bale was kept under control – in the first half anyway.
Lennon saw little of the ball and wasn’t much of a threat as the City midfield continued to dominate the centre areas.
Holt blazed a shot over the bar before forcing Lloris into a save from a header.
The French no:1 looked a little disturbed by the City attacks coupled with the windy conditions and flapped at the ball a few times.
The goal that City’s performance deserved came on 32 minutes. A right footed cross to the back post from Snodgrass found Holt. His flick header to The unmarked Pilkington was moved smartly to Hoolahan who scored from six yards.
It was a well worked goal and fully deserved.
Mark Bunn had very little to do in the first half but was called into action when Seb Bassong was robbed by Defoe just outside the Norwich area.
A quick one two and Defoe was one on one with Bunn. His fierce shot was parried away and bounced over the onrushing Bale before being cleared.
With City leading at half time, things were looking good for the home side.
The second half was different as you might expect. Spurs were well below par in the first 45 but AVB was able to gee them up and they became more of a threat as the half wore on.
For City, Martin and Pilkington both went close with shots while Defoe fired over at the other end.
The excellent Snodgrass was always a threat and his chipped pass to Martin on the right wing sent the full back surging towards the Spurs area.
He crossed the ball and Holt seemed certain to score but was foiled by a lunging Spurs defender.
At this point though, I still couldn’t see the visitors scoring but you can’t plan for what happened in the 80th minute.
Defoe found Bale, who spent most of the second half playing centrally, in the centre circle.
The Spurs man turned on the after burners and sprinted forward. Alex Tettey had a nibble and although he wobbled, Bale stayed on his feet.
As he surged towards the City area, Bale turned Garrido inside out before smashing a left foot shot across goal and into the net.
Turner and Bassong were also there but it was a touch of class from a great player.
It was tough on City and it felt like two points dropped. But, I would’ve taken a draw beforehand so it shows how well City performed here.
In the last ten minutes, City tired and could’ve lost it but Bunn made a terrific save to deny Sigurdsson.
It was a world away from the performances against Liverpool and Luton and hopefully shows that things may be on the turn.
With new arrivals expected today, we need to push on and make sure of our PL status.
Well done to the lads – a great effort all round.