Tottenham in for Ange Postecoglou rollercoaster after brilliant Man Utd win

Tottenham Hotspur vs Manchester United in pictures

Strap yourself in Tottenham fans. Life under Ange Postecoglou is not going to be dull. If anyone was wondering what things were going to be like at Tottenham Hotspur AH (after Harry), then the answer is – harum scarum. There will be plenty of exciting, attacking football – but boy, will there be some chewed fingernails.

It was Pape Matar Sarr who grabbed the winner last night at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium – just 24 hours after Harry Kane had opened his account for Bayern – and it rewarded a display that saw Spurs fight their way into a game they had been woeful in to start with. As for Erik ten Hag’s United, they created plenty of chances, but missed them all.

They simply had no Plan B when Tottenham finally found their game. Mason Mount, all £60million of him, looked utterly lost. Around 200 fans protested outside the ground before kick-off against Spurs chairman Daniel Levy and the raising of ticket prices, with banners proclaiming “Greed is a choice” and chants of “I’m Tottenham ‘til I’m skint.” It was the only blot on a fine evening for the club.

Harry Maguire was left out of the United squad altogether – and new £72m striker Rasmus Hojlund was ruled out with a hamstring problem. They look like they will need him. Ten Hag’s side actually took charge early on, as Tottenham started nervously. First Pedro Porro lost the ball, and Antony flashed his shot over the bar, and then Alejandro Garnacho saw his drive saved.

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Postecoglou’s side at times look very open at the back, and when Antony sped into the box, Marcus Rashford stepped in to shoot, and Guglielmo Vicario had to pull off a fine save. Spurs simply had not got going, and Rashford missed a golden opportunity, nodding Bruno Fernandes’ cross over when unmarked. United then thought they might have had a penalty when Garnacho’s shot hit Cristian Romero’s hand, but VAR said no.

Spurs though were finally waking up – and when Heung-Min Son poked the ball through, Sarr stole in to force Onana into a fine save. But Fernandes should have put United ahead – nodding wide from six yards when completely unmarked. It was a glorious chance.

Spurs then hit back as Son’s run set up Porro, who smacked the bar with his shot from the edge of the box. Sarr’s cross then deflected off Luke Shaw into the post, and Lisandro Martinez finally hacked it clear. Suddenly United looked unsure. Postecoglou’s side were growing into the game – though there is always that worry that they will drop a clanger at the back.

But three minutes after half time they were ahead. Dejan Kulusevski got away on the right. His low cross looped up off Martinez – and there was Sarr at the far post reacting quicker than anyone to ram the ball home. Barely used last season, the lanky Senegalese is getting his chance under Postecoglou.

United could have been level minutes later, when Fernandes put Antony clear, but he hit the post with a curling shot. At the back, United were collapsing, as Destiny Udogie sneaked through, and Onana had to save with his legs. Then Romero was brought down by Martinez, but referee Michael Oliver waved away claims for a penalty.

And as ever though, there was room for error, as Casemiro found space from Fernandes’ free kick, but Vicario brilliantly tipped over his header. He pulled off another save in the final minute, pushing Varane’s header onto the bar. Yves Bissouma, who bossed the midfield and kept Spurs ticking in those moments when they wobbled, then dribbled through, only to poke his shot wide.

Tottenham second goal summed up United’s worrying decline. Substitute Ivan Perisic crossed low, Ben Davies took a swing and just about touched the ball, and it flicked in off Martinez. Back to the drawing board, Erik.

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