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Man United 1-2 Tottenham
17.20 – Happy New Year, and welcome to our first liveblog of 2014
We’ll have the team news for you momentarily.
17.23 – United have been handed a boost ahead of today’s match, with Wayne Rooney being passed fit to play.
MAN UNITED: De Gea, Smalling, Evans, Vidic, Evra, Valencia, Carrick, Cleverley, Januzaj, Rooney, Welbeck. Subs: Ferdinand, Lindegaard, Hernandez, Young, Fletcher, Kagawa, Buttner.
TOTTENHAM: Lloris, Walker, Dawson, Chiriches, Rose, Lennon, Capoue, Dembele, Eriksen, Adebayor, Soldado. Subs: Lamela, Naughton, Chadli, Friedel, Fryers, Kane, Bentaleb.
17.31 – There’s been a few memorable games between these two sides in the past. Remember this one?
YouTube credit: PhantomFX91
17.32 – So how do you see this game going?
17.32 – We’re underway…
17.36 – United have started this game positively.
David Moyes’ side have spent the majority of the game so far in Tottenham’s final third, without managing to carve out any real opportunities.
17.39 – Danny Welbeck outpaces Michael Dawson, but Lloris gets to the ball played through just ahead of him.
Seconds later, Chris Smalling bursts forward from right-back, yet his powerful shot finds the side-netting via the legs of the Tottenham keeper.
17.42 – Wayne Rooney curls a free-kick from just outside the box well over the bar.
The striker has been quiet so far.
17.46 – United continue to probe and dominate possession, but Tottenham have just gone close.
Lovely through ball by Soldado to find Lennon, but his poor finish is straight at De Gea.
17.49 – Lennon’s speed is beginning to cause United problems.
He easily outpaces Vidic, but Spurs fail to carve out an opportunity after he crosses the ball into the box, and the move eventually breaks down.
17.51 – For all the talk of Tottenham’s supposedly attacking lineup, it’s been a relatively cautious performance from Spurs so far.
They have had very little possession, and have spent the majority of the game with most of their players behind the ball.
18.00 – After a promising opening, the game’s gone very quiet of late.
Surely though, with all the talent on the pitch, it won’t be too long before we see something special.
18.04 – According to BT Sport’s statisticians, Tottenham have made just 14 passes in their opponent’s final third, compared with United’s 54.
United haven’t fully capitalised on this dominance though.
18.06 – GOAL FOR TOTTENHAM!
18.08 – Tottenham 1-0 United: Emmanuel Adebayor leaps above the defender to head the ball into the net (34 mins).
The cross from Eriksen was glorious.
18.14 – Soldado misses a bit of a sitter.
Good interplay from Lennon and Adebayor enables the former to cross to the Spaniard.
Soldado, who only has one goal from open play this season, fails to connect with the ball properly and thus, blazes it over.
Just before that, Dawson makes a vital interception to stop Januzaj heading into the net.
18.18 – Tottenham are growing into this game, while United are starting to make some sloppy errors.
Smalling has just chested the ball out of play, unnecessarily giving away a corner in the process.
18.19 – HALF-TIME: MAN UNITED 0-1 TOTTENHAM
18.23 – Here’s the goal that’s put Tottenham in front.
YouTube credit: Neymar Jr
18.34 – So at half-time, it’s Tottenham 1-0 United.
Tim Sherwood’s men have played this game intelligently.
United have dominated possession, but haven’t really created many chances despite their superiority in this regard, largely thanks to Spurs’ excellent defending and pragmatic tactics.
Tottenham, in contrast with their opponents, have used the ball very well on the counter-attack, with Lennon, in particular, exposing the United backline’s lack of pace.
David Moyes’ men are in desperate need of inspiration to get back in this game. Perhaps Kagawa or Hernandez can provide it by coming off the bench.
18.34 – The second half is underway…
18.39 – Tottenham launch another threatening counter-attack at the beginning of the second half, but Adebayor goes to ground all too easily, seemingly.
Howard Webb is unimpressed, and waves play on.
18.42 – Danny Welbeck has just missed a decent chance.
Dawson fails to clear the ball properly, and it falls to the Englishman, but his volley fails to test Lloris.
18.44 – The groans around the ground are audible, as Wayne Rooney gives the ball away sloppily.
The home side are looking increasingly frustrated.
(Tottenham Hotpsur’s Mousa Dembele [centre] and Etienne Capoue [right] battle for the ball with Manchester United’s Tom Cleverley – Martin Rickett/PA Wire/Press Association Images)
18.51 – Howard Webb has just rejected a United appeal for a penalty and he gets the decision spot on, as Welbeck goes down far too easily.
Chiriches did give him a problem though, by dangling out a leg.
18.53 – Kagawa has come on for United, with Rooney dropping back into midfield, as Carrick leaves the pitch.
Meanwhile, Bentaleb is set to replace Capoue for Tottenham, with the teenager making just his second senior appearance for Spurs.
18.54 – GOAL FOR TOTTENHAM!
18.56 – GOAL FOR UNITED!
19.00 – Tottenham 2-1 United: Phew! Two quick goals there.
Firstly, Eriksen nips ahead of Valencia to head home following a superb Spurs counter-attack (64 mins).
Straight away, Januzaj plays a superb through ball, which Welbeck finishes consummately (65 mins).
Meanwhile, Chadli has replaced the injured Adebayor.
19.03 – Tottenham are currently reeling, with their defence looking overworked since United’s goal.
Moyes’ attacking changes seem to have belatedly paid off, with Tottenham now playing five in midfield to combat the pressure.
19.05 – Harry Kane replaces Soldado to take over the lone frontman role.
This finally few minutes looks set to be a tough watch for Tottenham and United fans alike.
19.07 – Great work from Chiriches to stop a Kagawa cross. The Romanian has arguably been the man-of-the-match today.
Shortly thereafter, Welbeck scuffs an excellent chance from close range, after great play from the increasingly influential Januzaj.
19.10 – Here’s a look at the most recent two goals.
YouTube credit: irir99irir
YouTube credit: Neymar Jr
19.14 – 10 minutes remain, and United continue to threaten, though Tottenham have steadied the ship somewhat in recent minutes.
As I type, Lennon goes on a good individual run, before his tame shot is comfortably saved by De Gea.
Meanwhile, Cleverley is replaced by Young, as United go all-out attack.
19.18 – Another close shave for Spurs, as Lloris needlessly comes off his line and Young chips the ball over the goalkeeper, only for the recovering defender to clear the ball off the line.
There are also penalty claims, as Lloris appeared to take out Young after he chipped the ball over him.
19.21 – Rooney’s shot is parried away by Lloris after a mazy dribble by Januzaj.
Shortly thereafter, the Englishman’s effort from a dangerous corner played into him is cleared off the line by Lennon.
19.22 – Januzaj wins a free-kick in a dangerous position near the corner flag.
The youngster has easily been the best player on the pitch in the last half an hour.
19.24 – Chiriches has been named man-of-the-match by BT Sport’s Michael Owen. Can’t argue with that.
Meanwhile, Lloris, in typically unconventional style, has just headed the ball away from danger.
19.25 – FULL-TIME: MAN UNITED 2-1 TOTTENHAM
19.26 – It’s all over!
United have suffered their fifth defeat of the season.
19.28 – Owen Hargreaves has ruled United out of the title race.
They’re now in seventh position, with Tottenham leapfrogging them in the table.
19.33 – So, another bad day for United.
They were perhaps a little unfortunate in the last few minutes, missing numerous chances and seeing two penalties turned down.
However, Tottenham played a big role to help make it a fantastic game, defending resiliently and showing a level of ruthlessness in front of goal that United lacked.
Aaron Lennon was perhaps the visitors’ most prominent weapon, continually posing the United defence problems with his pace and trickery.
19.39 – Right, that’s it from me!
Thanks for reading and commenting, and enjoy the rest of the holidays.