While it would be better to see Spurs hold onto a lead than fight from behind, Tottenham Hotspur showed resolve in a massive 2-3 come back win over Bournemouth.
It was a must-win game for Tottenham after dropping two straight in the League, but after falling behind 2-0 at Bournemouth, things did not look good for Spurs. Fortunately, for the second straight match, Tottenham showed the fighting spirit necessary to come back and, even better, finished the job in a 2-3 win.
Despite controlling the ball, Tottenham could not control the game
Tottenham is learning as the season progresses because Spurs played with a more aggressive approach against Bournemouth, as they dominated possession. In the first half, Tottenham had over 65% of possession – whoscored.com – yet only had one more shot than Bournemouth, and worse, Spurs were behind 1-0.
A poor turnover up the pitch from Pierre Hojbjerg led to a Bournemouth counter, and a textbook goal as the worst case for Spurs occurred. The easy finish from Kieffer Moore put the Cherries exactly where they wanted to be and left Spurs in a hole.
Unfortunately for Tottenham, the start of the second half led to an even bigger deficit. While controlling 70% of the possession to start the last 45-minutes, Spurs still managed to concede. As Moore beat Emerson Royal to the cross and Davinson Sanchez just stood there, Spurs found themselves down two goals.
If there was anything unlucky about the situation for Bournemouth, they left Tottenham too much time, as Spurs finally started their comeback.
Sessegnon and substitutes save Spur’s bacon
Less than ten minutes after falling behind by two, Tottenham finally had their breakthrough. A pretty through-ball from Hojbjerg hit Ryan Sessegnon on the run up the left, and the young Englishman finished calmly to the far post past Mark Travers.
They were down only one goal with over 30 minutes to play in the match, and Tottenham had it all to play for; thankfully, Spurs played like it.
During the last 32 minutes of the match, Tottenham had almost 78% of possession and, more importantly, sharpened their passing, connecting on 90% of their attempts.
Slowly and methodically, Spurs worked the ball looking to leverage as many scoring chances as they could find, with the best approach being corner kicks.
Tottenham was pushing with such intensity that they had 11 of their 19 corner kicks after the Sessegnon goal. And fortunately, the Lilywhites have been working on their set pieces.
Spurs were able to score on corners twice, with substitutes playing a significant role.
Ivan Perisic – who came on for Royal – hit the corner, and Ben Davies headed home. Then it was Rodrigo Bentancur scoring for the second match, running as a corner almost three minutes into extra time fell right in front of him, and Rodrigo neatly finished for Spur’s third goal.
You never like to fall behind as Tottenham did. However, the nature of the comeback will hopefully be something Spurs can build on, as they have a big week coming. With the final Champions League group stage game in France on Tuesday and Liverpool on the weekend, there is no time for rest.