Ryan Mason’s second interim spell in charge of Tottenham Hotspur got off to a strong start as his side came from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Manchester United in the Premier League on Thursday.
It was a game of two halves as United controlled the first half before a switch flipped for Spurs and they took the game to the hosts in the second half and did excellently to rescue a point. The hosts even had enough chances to complete the ultimate comeback and snatch a vital three points in their chase for the top four, but United had their chances too to put the game to bed when they were on top.
From Spurs’ point of view it was night and day between this performance and the shambolic display they gave against Newcastle United on Sunday. One thing you are guaranteed from Mason’s side is fight and this comeback will have given the supporters some much-needed hope for the remaining fixtures of the season.
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United went ahead early on in the game as Jadon Sancho scored his fifth Premier League goal of the season inside the opening 10 minutes. The winger received the ball on the left side of the box and dispatched his effort into the bottom-right corner to give the visitors the lead.
The former Borussia Dortmund star has spent almost two years in the Premier League since his highly-anticipated move from the Bundesliga, and for several reasons we haven’t quite seen him hit his Black and Yellows form for the Red Devils yet. This includes his first season at Old Trafford being a turbulent one due to managerial changes and the team underperforming, and other aspects including a mental health break which took place earlier this term.
That being said, we are seeing a player becoming more assured of his abilities again and as we know if he can reach the levels that made him a superstar at Dortmund, United will boast one of the best wingers in the league. Sancho, like United, is still evolving in the top flight and another pre-season under Erik ten Hag in the summer should do wonders for his game next year as the club will want to close the gap on rivals Manchester City and Arsenal.
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United attacked well in the first half and Spurs didn’t know how to handle them. Bruno Fernandes tested Fraser Forster from range before the Portuguese midfielder set Marcus Rashford away and he fired his side two goals ahead to register his 29th of the campaign in all competitions.
The hosts gave themselves a lot to do in the second half but they managed to pull a goal back early through a smart finish from Pedro Porro. Moments after, however, United almost restored their two-goal advantage as Fernandes rattled the crossbar with a shot before Aaron Wan-Bissaka followed up with a diving header which was parried away by Forster.
Son Heung-min was later provided a great opportunity to level the scoreline when was picked out perfectly by Harry Kane, but his first-time effort went wide of the far post. Minutes later, Eric Dier had an even greater chance to equalise when he was found unmarked for a header and yet somehow didn’t hit the target.
As the match approached the final 10 minutes, Son was able to make amends for his earlier miss by being given a similar chance, once again set up by Kane, and fired past David de Gea to bring Spurs level. This intensified the contest for the final minutes of the match with both teams desperate for the three points which would hugely boost their top-four claims.
Spurs deserved something from the game for their drive in the second half and there is a lot of positives for them to take in their remaining matches as they face a huge battle with the Red Devils for that final Champions League spot - as it looks like Newcastle United are going to finish in the top four. United will be concerned that they let their two-goal advantage slip but they will be well aware that six points still separate them from the north London club.