Ipswich Town. . . . 2
TOTTENHAM'S FA Cup victory at Norwich on Sunday may have raised expectations of continental competition next season, but they were undone by foreign influence last night. Second-half goals from a Bulgarian international striker, Boncho Genchev, and a Canadian international full-back Frank Yallop (though he was born in Watford), sobered the mood at White Hart Lane.
The Cup may still hold some cheer for Spurs, but the League offers them scant comfort. They have lost three matches on the trot, scoring once and conceding eight goals, and now find themselves uncomfortably in 15th place. Ipswich, in contrast, are keeping in touch with the leaders, jointly the hardest side in the country to beat with a record of four defeats in 25 games.
That record clearly contributed to the confidence they displayed in withstanding Tottenham's early flourishes, even though they were lacking the valuable services of John Wark and Steve Whitton through injury.
While Tottenham's approach work was shot through with nervous energy, Ipswich built neatly and steadily with a quiet purpose which eluded their opponents.
Spurs' high point came after 24 minutes, when a cross from Dean Austin was headed towards goal by Nick Barmby and off the line by the Ipswich centre-back Phil Whelan.
That was a rare moment of discomposure for the visitors. Two minutes after the break they reduced the Tottenham defence to chaos as David Linighan's header from a Neil Thompson corner was scrambled away. Yallop galloped onto it and returned it, into the net via the underside of the bar, from 30 yards before rearing away to celebrate his first goal in four years.
Twenty minutes from time the home side rallied to produce a left- wing cross from David Howells which eluded Teddy Sheringham but found the alert Nick Barmby, whose far-post shot was deflected away by the outstretched foot of the Ipswich keeper.
But Ipswich made sure of the result they deserved 10 minutes from time when a flowing move down the left saw Gavin Johnson supply Thompson, and his driven cross was tapped in at the far post by the unattended Genchev.
'We were very difficult to beat tonight, and always liable to do something,' the Ipswich manager, Mick McGiven, said. Unlike Tottenham, they still have the possibility of doing something in the League as well as the Cup.
Tottenham Hotspur: Thorstvedt; Austin (Van Den Hauwe, 80), Edinburgh, Samways, Mabbutt, Ruddock, Barmby, Durie (Howells, 33), Anderton, Sheringham, Allen. Substitute not used: Walker (gk).
Ipswich Town: Baker; Johnson, Thompson, Williams, Whelan, Linighan, Yallop, Genchev, Bozinoski, Dozzell, Kiwomya. Substitutes not used: Youds, Goddard, Forrest (gk).
Referee: S Lodge (Barnsley).Reuse content