32 min “Spurs seem less focused today than v Arsenal or Liverpool,” says Ron Stack. “Passes off target, pace a bit slower. They aren’t going to do it again, are they?”
I’d say it’s a bit early for that, though a 0-0 draw with 48 world-class saves from Nick Pope wouldn’t be a surprise.
31 min Token not to Arsenal fans.
30 min “Relegation this, Champions League that, I just want to see Son win the Golden Boot,” says Phil Podolsky. “Not because I don’t like Salah but because I really love Son. One of the true Big Game Players in addition to being one of the great finishers, one of the best players in the world, probably the most likable footballer of all time and so on and so forth.”
Tell it to Twitter mate. That place had Son pegged from day one.
28 min: Good save from Lloris! Burnley are coming into this. Collins strolls out of defence, keeps going and then slides a marvellous pass around Sanchez to put Cornet through on goal. He cracks a shot towards the near post that is pushed away by Lloris, a smart reaction save.
27 min Roberts is booked for kicking the ball away.
25 min Taylor breaks down the left and curls a brilliant cross towards McNeil, who is about to head towards goal from six yards when Sessegnon gets round to clear. Vital defending. Burnley have looked less uncomfortable in the last few minutes.
22 min Barnes slips Bentancur neatly but has only Cornet in support and the attack is over almost before it started. Burnley can’t get out.
21 min “Any info on the players down the end of the list on Burnley’s bench?” says Brian Gissane. “They’re made-up names, right? Reads like a Pro Evo teamsheet.”
I think that attitude is very disrespectful to Napoleon Vennegoor of Hesselink.
18 min A swirling long-range shot by Emerson Royal is pushed over by Pope. It was a comfortable enough save, but Pope is having far too much to do for Burnley’s liking.
17 min: Off the line by Collins! Lucas Moura, who has started superbly, waves a pass across to Sessegnon with the outside of the foot. His deep cross is headed back across goal by Kane, and Collins stretches like an arthritic ninja to shin it behind for a corner. I’m not entirely sure Kane’s header was going in, though Collins didn’t know that.
15 min Davies shoots straight at Pope from distance.
14 min Passes so far: Spurs 106-10 Burnley.
14 min “Burnley – always loved them,” says a bald-faced Charles Antaki. “Terrific team. It would do every Arsenal fan’s heart good to see them stay in the Premier League, preferably by winning today and then… actually I don’t care much what happens after that. All good luck to them. May several goals go in off a Burnley forward’s arse, several times.”
13 min Moura scoots past Taylor and stands up a cross to Kane, whose header is saved to his right by Pope. There wasn’t much pace on the cross, good though it was, and Kane did about as well as could be expected.
11 min Son takes a short corner on the left, gets it back and whips an inswinging cross-shot that is pushed behind by the diving Pope. He was out of position, expecting a deep cross, and I suspect that was a clever effort from Son rather than a mishit cross.
10 min Spurs have had 88 per cent possession. Emerson Royal runs at Taylor and drives a low shot that is kicked away by Collins in the six-yard box. He’s a really promising defender for both Burnley and Ireland.
9 min No chances yet for either side, though Burnley continued to defend a little uneasily. Kane is about to appeal for a penalty when he realised he’s been flagged offside. It was a soft push from Long, probably not a foul.
8 min “Hi Rob,” says Jon Collin. “Re: alternatives to ‘in control of their destiny’, how about ‘masters of their own domain’?”
Haha, I think we have a winner.
6 min Most of the game so far has taken place in the Burnley third. The average positions graphic must look like a beehive.
4 min Sanchez has a long-range shot blocked. It’s been all Spurs so far. They won’t be playing on the counter-attack today.
3 min “My online Collins has a mildly amusing second def for DEFENESTRATION,” says Rob Jacques, “as a defiant act of uninstalling the Microsoft operating system.”
Is that true? That sounds suspiciously like WORDPLAY, or maybe even BANTER.
2 min Scratch that, it’s a back five. They trained with a back four in the warm-up. I love this burgeoning culture of tactical subterfuge.
Burnley (5-3-2) Pope; Roberts, Collins, Long, Lowton; Taylor; Brownhill, Cork, McNeil; Cornet, Barnes.
1 min Peep peep! Burnley get the game under way. They’ve started with a back four, with Connor Roberts in midfield.
Burnley (4-4-2) Pope; Lowton, Collins, Long, Taylor; Roberts, Brownhill, Cork, McNeil; Barnes, Cornet.
A reminder of the teams
Spurs (3-4-3) Lloris; Sanchez, Dier, Davies; Emerson Royal, Bentancur, Hojbjerg, Sessegnon; Lucas Moura, Kane, Son.
Substitutes: Gollini, Austin, Rodon, White, Winks, Craig, Kulusevski, Bergwijn, Scarlett.
Burnley (possible 5-3-2) Pope; Roberts, Lowton, Collins, Long, Taylor; McNeil, Brownhill, Cork; Barnes, Cornet.
Substitutes: Hennessey, Bardsley, Thomas, Dodgson, Lennon, Gomez Mancini, Weghorst, Costelloe, McGlynn.
Referee Kevin Friend.
“Instead of ‘in control of their destiny’,” begins Phil Grey, “how about spinners of their own web? Navigators of their own carrack? Producers of their own BBC miniseries set in Lancashire?”
“Defenestration,” says Alan Rowley. “I don’t think you know what the word means.”
I love the smell of fan mail before kick off.
Twenty years ago today
It’s nothing to do with this game but come on, even Tony Soprano wouldn’t begrude a bit of remember whenning on the anniversary of Zinedine Zidane’s volley against Bayer Leverkusen.
Nostalgia tricks us into thinking that great sporting moments have been in our mind’s eye from the, er, moment they happened, but that’s not always the case. I reckon I saw this goal three or four times at most before YouTube. I know for sure I didn’t see it live as I was watching The Distance from Here at the Almeida, a play that the Guardian just adored.
Lucas Moura replaces Dejan Kulusevski in the only Spurs change from the defenestration of Arsenal.
Mike Jackson makes three changes from the Burnley team that lost at home to Aston Villa last weekend. Kevin Long, Matt Lowton and Maxwel Cornet come in for James Tarkowski (injured), Aaron Lennon and Wout Weghorst. It also looks like they will start with a back five.
Hello and welcome to live coverage of Spurs v Burnley at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. It’s a collision of two very different worlds with not dissimilar obsessions. Spurs are desperate to finish fourth from top; Burnley would sell their soul – arguably already have – to finish fourth from bottom.
Though Spurs had their biggest party in years on Thursday night, they’d rather not be playing on Thursday evenings next season. Champions League qualification is their world entire, chiefly because it would guarantee that the wonderful Antonio Conte stays for next season. Spurs find themselves in a strange position: high on life, but with their fate is in somebody else’s hands. Their hands. All Spurs can do is win both remaining games – today and Norwich away next weekend – and hope Arsenal drop points against either Newcastle or Everton.
Burnley are level on points with Leeds but with a game in hand. Their goal difference is so superior (-17 to Leeds’ -38) that they will remain in control of their destiny* whatever happens today. Leeds play Brighton at 2pm, so Burnley could be in the bottom three before the Sunday roasts have been digested. Or they could be safe with two games to spare.
Kick off 12pm.
* Yeah I know, ‘in control of their destiny’ is an awful phrase; a particularly nasty cliche. If you can think of a better alternative, I’ll happily pass it off as my own in future liveblogs.