Spurs ripped apart by Little
Burnley 2 Tottenham Hotspur 1
Thursday 07 November 2002
Anyone who regards this result as another Premiership side falling victim to a half-hearted approach to the Worthington Cup can think again. Tottenham Hotspur, runners-up last February, went out of the competition last night and the result was as bona fide as any cup shock.
Spurs fielded a strong side, dominated the first half when they should have won the tie but succumbed to their First Division rival's revival. The disappointment in the body language of the Spurs players spoke eloquently of the importance the visitors attached to the defeat.
The more so because the outcome seemed inconceivable after the first 25 minutes when Spurs had taken a 1-0 lead through Gus Poyet's header and had a comfortable superiority that suggested an easy evening. Some comfort, because Burnley, suddenly alive where they had been supine, went through to the fourth round thanks to goals from Robbie Blake and captain Steve Davis.
"I didn't rant or rave at half-time, I was just normal," Stan Ternent, the Burnley manager, said as he tried to explain his side's contrasting halves. "I just asked them if they thought they could do it and the response was fantastic."
Burnley had prepared for this re-run of the 1962 FA Cup final byconceding 12 goals in three defeats and needed quickly to recall how to defend as Tottenham began with a real urgency that had the Burnley barricades creaking. They collapsed after 16 minutes when no one bothered to go with Poyet when he made his charge toward the near post from Stephen Carr's corner. The Uruguayan used his liberty to crack a fierce header past Marlon Beresford.
Burnley had barely figured but were transformed after the interval. Glen Little, an increasingly influence, cut in from the right after 56 minutes and passed to Blake, whose initial touch appeared too heavy but was more than made up for with his second, which crashed a shot past Kasey Keller. Four minutes later it was 2-1 when Davis rose above two Tottenham defenders to meet Graham Branch's corner, thumping his header low to Keller's right.
That set up a finale which veered from side to side with Blake hitting a Tottenham post after 63 minutes and Robbie Keane twice going through clear on the Burnley goal. The first he pulled wide but the second, after 76 minutes, ended almost embarrassingly as he lamely chipped the ball straight into Beresford's arms. Even then Tottenham could have taken the tie into an extra 30 minutes when Keane crashed a volley on to the bar in injury time.
"I can't believe what happened," Glenn Hoddle, the Spurs manager, said. "But no excuses. We should have won it having gone 1-0 up but every credit to Burnley, they deserved their win."
Burnley (4-4-2): Beresford; West, McGregor (Little, 26), Gnohere, Branch; Weller, Davis, Grant, Briscoe; Taylor, Blake (Papadopoulos, 84). Substitutes not used: Cook, I Moore, A Moore.
Tottenham Hotspur (4-4-2): Keller; Carr, Perry, Gardner, Bunjevcevic; Davies, Clemence, Poyet, Etherington (Anderton, 60); Iversen (Doherty, 81), Ferdinand (Keane, h-t). Substitutes not used: Hirschfeld (gk), Acimovic.
Referee: D Gallagher (Banbury).
Latest in Sport
Arsenal vs Manchester City: With Arsene Wenger missing a number of key players, who could start the Community Shield clash?
Malaysian cyclist could face disciplinary action after 'Save Gaza' gloves protest
Manchester United: Five things we've learned so far about Louis van Gaal, including his ability to accommodate Juan Mata, Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney
Liverpool transfer news: Reds 'in talks' to sign Benfica winger Nicolas Gaitan as summer spending threatens to exceed £100m
Manchester United transfer news: Angel Di Maria set to choose between Old Trafford and PSG in next few days
- 1 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 2 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
- 3 Satellite full of sexually experimental geckos adrift in space, Russia loses control of mission
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: victims’ bodies bundled in black bags and loaded onto trains
John Barrowman praised for Commonwealth Games opening ceremony gay kiss