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    Tottenham Hotspur 0-0 Everton: Match Report

    By Tom Regan

    Tim Howard’s heroics in the Everton goal denied the north Londoner's from registering their first win of the season during a 0-0 draw at White Hart Lane. This represents Tottenham’s worst start to a Premier League campaign for seven years, leaving the club lingering above the relegation zone in 15th place.

    In the early phases of the game, it was a tight affair as both sides were eager to take control of proceedings. The Lilywhites soon settled down and gave the Toffees backline plenty to think about. Harry Kane was guilty for wasting the first significant opportunity of the match as he shot wide.
    Nabil Bentaleb had a good chance to test Tim Howard on 15 minutes after Nacer Chadli’s clever cut-back, but the Algerian’s first time effort was dragged wide of Howard’s left hand post. Everton hit back straightaway, as Tom Cleverley dispossessed Kyle Walker and unleashed a scorching long-range drive which was pushed away by the agile Hugo Lloris.

    Spurs were starting to click, and Howard had to be at his very best to keep the home team at bay. Harry Kane, still searching for his first goal this term, wasted the best chance of the game in the 23rd minute. He timed his run to perfection to beat two defenders on the halfway line after being freed by Ryan Mason, but Kane’s lack of confidence was evident as he shot straight at Howard’s legs.
    The north London outfit finished the half in convincing fashion, and the American shot-stopper was forced into a fine save from Mason after the tenacious midfielder had latched on to Chadli’s intelligent pass. Toby Alderweireld was next to try and get the better of Howard, but yet again the keeper was in no mood to be beaten as he tipped over the Belgian defender’s firm header.

    There was a worrying moment for the Merseyside club as Tom Cleverley had to be stretchered off following a strong but fair tackle from Eric Dier. In his post-match interview, Roberto Martinez confirmed the Toffees worst fears had been realised as Cleverley suffered knee ligament damage and will face a lengthy recovery period.

    The stretcher was required once again in the second half to remove Mousa Dembele from the field after he had set Kane up for yet another shot that was blocked in the Everton goalmouth. Just like Cleverley, Dembele seemed to damage his ankle during the build up to Kane’s effort, although the seriousness of his injury has not yet been established.

    Former MK Dons star Dele Alli replaced Dembele, and he had a strong shout for a penalty kick turned down after it appeared he had been caught inside the box. Mason was presented with a glorious opportunity to send the home fans into euphoria, but Howard was proving a tough nut to crack as he saved again. From that moment on, there was a great sense that is was not to be Tottenham’s day, and the Toffees almost completed the ultimate smash and grab, but Arouna Kone’s glancing header went inches wide.

    This was a game Tottenham would probably have won last term, but so far in this campaign they seem to be lacking a cutting edge. Harry Kane, still without a goal this term, was guilty of missing a golden chance, but surely it is only a matter of time before he gets off the mark. The addition of Clinton N’Jie from Lyon and Son Heung-Min from Bayer Leverkusen will give Mauricio Pochettino some much needed attacking options.

    The transfer window comes to an end at 6pm on Tuesday 1st September, and the Lilywhites will be desperate to bring in a couple more faces, particularly a centre forward and creative midfielder. Deadline day is always a tense affair, but expect Spurs chairman Daniel Levy to be working exceptionally hard as he aims to pull off some shrewd business for his club.
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    Item Reviewed: Tottenham Hotspur 0-0 Everton: Match Report Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Tom Regan
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