Party Poopers West Ham Deserved to Beat Tottenham & the Credit Must Go to Manuel Pellegrini

​A brisk, cold afternoon at Tottenham Hotspur's new stadium.

A warmth and buzz around the place on the way to the ground, with the home faithful delighted to be marching towards their glorious new home. So many things going well right now. Champions League semi-finalists, pretty much dead certs for a top four finish and Mauricio Pochettino still the man at the helm.

What could possibly go wrong after four consecutive wins at home in all competitions, scoring eight goals and conceding none?

I'll tell you what. West Ham. Wonderful, wonderful ​West Ham.

Michail Antonio

The perennial party poopers who love a good day out in north London. 

Let's not forget, we were the last team to win at Highbury back in 2006, courtesy of a 3-2 win. Fast forward almost a year and we were at it again, stunning the Emirates Stadium into silence with a cheeky 1-0.

So it was time to create some more beautiful history. Time to go to ​Tottenham's brand spanking new ground and play them off the park with some wonderfully attractive, counter-attacking football.

Okay, it wasn't quite that today. But it was an open game that, quite frankly, we were well worthy of winning in the end. 

Admittedly, the sight of an absurdly high line caused unnecessary early panic in my heart, but it showed Manuel Pellegrini's intent. We were not going to be afraid to leave numbers forward, and would be happy to allow Spurs to come onto us in the first half. We knew they would have most of the possession, but that was okay - we thought we could soak it up and hit them on the break.

Admittedly, Spurs wasted chances - Son Heung-min was denied by Lukasz Fabianski and Christian Eriksen decided to wind the clock forward to December, gifting us a left off when he inexplicably failed to square the ball to Dele Alli six yards out.

But things changed after half-time. We had a spring in our step and the intensity was upped. Marko Arnautovic, who was anonymous in the first half, was suddenly seeing more of the ball and both Michail Antonio and Felipe Anderson were dangerous on the flanks.


It was a masterclass from Pellegrini, that demonstrated that he will never abandon his footballing principles. We were expected to lose today, so why not go out and have a go ourselves? Truth be told, that surprised Spurs a bit. Our willingness to pile forward caught them out and our goal was more than deserved after beginning the second half in such positive fashion.


Only Jose Mourinho (5) has beaten Pochettino more often in the Premier League than Pellegrini (4).  

Arnautovic, who gradually improved as the game went on, clipped a splendid ball into Antonio and he did the rest. Spurs' new home? Silent. Apart from a pocket of wonderful supporters going absolutely mental to my left. Oh how I wanted to be in there with them.

From then on, I feared the worst - a usual West Ham collapse. Rolling over and allowing our bellies to be tickled until we could no longer soak up the pressure. But it didn't happen. We didn't back down and cower into our shell, instead driving forward to try and double the lead.

We could, and perhaps should, have wrapped it up with another. We didn't, but that's okay - because we're the history boys who have only gone and done it again.

Declan Rice

North London, we love you and we can't wait to come back and spoil your days again.


Source : 90min

Source: 90min