Tottenham

Crawley stun Leeds in shock of the round in FA Cup

League two side Crawley, produced one of the biggest shocks in recent FA Cup history, with an emphatic 3-0 against Leeds.

The Lillywhites who are in mid-table in the Premier League, were fielding a weaker side. Having said that, the Yorkshire side did include Rodrigo, Kalvin Phillips and Ezgjan Alioski in their side.

So they did have some of their first team squad at their disposal. What would have been alarming for the visitors, is that the League Two underdogs Crawley could have scored even more.

There was no such look for Morecambe, the Lancashire side were well beaten by Premier League side Chelsea 4-0.

Goals from Tino Werner (His first since November), amongst others helped The Blues through in this one.

Former winners Manchester City capped off a good week, with a convincing 3-0 win over Birmingham.

City’s rivals Tottenham, who were facing Non-League Marine, ended up winning 5-0 in a match that could have been difficult for Spurs.

Marine, did well to get this far and were rewarded with a glamour tie with North London side Tottenham.

In a show of respect by Spurs boss Jose Mourinho, the Portuguese boss did field a starting line up that has 402 international caps between them.

The beauty of the cup, is still alive and going going strong. We will bring you the FA Cup fourth and fifth round draw, which takes place on Monday 19:00.

Tottenham, are through to final after Brentford win

Tottenham Hotspur booked their place in the final of the Carabao Cup after a 2-0 win over Brentford. The West London side, did beat Premier League side Newcastle 1-0 in the last round to get here.

With that in mind, it was evident that The Bees would be no pushover in this game. Brentford have had to rebuild after the sales of Said Benrahma and star forward Ollie Watkins.

To their credit after an arguably slow start, are competing within the higher reaches of the Championship again.

Key to this, has been Ivan Toney, the 26-year old former Newcastle and Peterborough striker has scored and impressive 16 goals this term.

The homeside Tottenham, knew that if they were to progress in this one, they will need to keep Toney quite and star forwards Harry Kane and Son Heung Min will need to perform.

Perform they did. Despite Brentford having, bright moments in this game, Spurs through goals by Mohammed Sissoko and Son, are through to the final, at the expense of the visitors Brentford, who were in their first competitive semi-final in their history.

A red card for Brentford’s Josh Da Silva, effectively ended any chance that the visitors had in progressing to the final.

For Tottenham, this is their chance to get their hands in silver for the first time since 2008, when they won this competition by beating Chelsea 2-1 that day.

Despite losing this semi-final, Brentford exit this tournament, with their heads held high.

They have clearly shown by their performances this year in the Championship and Carabao Cup, they are a very capable team and are a match for any one.

Come May, they will be back in the promotion race for sure.

This Tottenham team, have gone some way to show that they’re now ready to move to the next level. Jose’s back, Manchester City or Manchester United … you’re next are you ready?

Unpopular opinion, Liverpool bottle it?

Hello and good evening, I hope you’re all well and looking after yourselves. Thank you for your readership, it’s appreciated for sure. I have written a few pieces in what I call the unpopular opinion series.

The first piece was about Leeds and their chances of staying in the Premier League here it is;. https://ayyazmalik.com/2020/12/24/unpopular-opinion-why-leeds-will-get-relegated/

And Frank Lampard maybe getting the sack? That can be viewed here; https://ayyazmalik.com/2021/01/03/lampard-for-the-sack/

In this article, after Liverpool’s defeat tonight against Southampton, I want to discuss the possibility of The Reds, last year’s Premier League winners, winning the league this year.

Jurgen Klopp’s men after impressing for large parts of the season last year to win the league after a 30-year wait, just have quite been themselves of late.

I am not mentioning the 7-2 defeat by Aston Villa, that was earlier in the season, I am talking about the last month.

Draws against Fulham West Brom and now this defeat to The Saints is showing signs that the Merseysiders are a club struggling compared to their high standards.

This maybe a tad harsh, as during this hectic period The Anfield side have beat Crystal Palace 7-0 at Selhurst Park, and ground out a 2-1 win over Tottenham Hotspur at Anfield, who have impressed this year.

But, the injuries to Virgil Van Dijk and Joe Gomez, just might be starting to affect Jurgen’s men.

In tonights game, I argue that The Reds lacked the dynamism of Fabinho and the engine of captain Jordan Henderson in the middle of the park. Both were deployed as centre backs, due to the chronic shortage at the back for Liverpool.

Avid readers of my blog, would remember my piece where I was quite critical of Liverpool’s spending.

To their credit Thiago, and Diogo Jota were signed after that article was published, so I will go on record saying I need to apologise for that. That article can be found here; https://ayyazmalik.com/2020/06/26/dear-jurgen-a-letter-from-the-sports-buff/

What I want to stick by, is that Liverpool won’t win this year’s Premier League. The 19 time domestic League title winners, do arguably have the best squad in the country.

Manchester City won the Premier League title back to back, but The Citizens were first team to do this since Manchester United do so, when they had their legendary manager Sir Alex Ferguson in charge.

My thinking is, that as good as this Liverpool team has been, their lack of defensive cover will prove costly. Am I wrong? Let me know in the comments.