Tottenham Hotspur was in FA Cup action for the first time this season in a close but comfortable 1-0 win over Portsmouth; how did the players perform?
After a couple of months of struggling, Tottenham Hotspur is slowly finding their rhythm. Spurs followed up their midweek win over Crystal Palace with an essential but not-pretty win over Portsmouth in the FA Cup. The win moves Tottenham forward in the competition and hopefully builds some player confidence ahead of the north London derby next weekend.
Rating Spurs Defense
After ten straight matches without a clean sheet, Tottenham was hardly troubled defensively by Pompey and now has back-to-back shutouts.
Ben Davies – 6.5
Back in the starting line-up for Clement Lenglet, the Welshman was good defensively and looked to get forward often. Davies occasionally found himself in the box but never could make that final play. He committed a late foul that picked up a yellow card and gave Pompey a chance. Disappointing that he did not attempt any long balls into the box, as we have seen from Lenglet in recent games.
Davinson Sanchez – 7
Starting in the middle of the back three, Pompey rarely tested Sanchez in the game. It looked like Sanchez committed a big late foul, but the card and foul both went to Davies. Sanchez provided excellent depth for his fellow defenders, making it easy for Spurs to control possession against a primarily toothless attack.
Japhet Tanganga – 7.5
Maybe the most active of all the Tottenham defenders, Japhet Tanganga, gave us what we have come to expect from the young defender, good, hard-nosed defense. Locked in a battle with Colby Bishop for most of the game, Tanganga gave the Pompey forward no room to operate, limiting the goalscorer’s chances. Tanganga looked to push forward, but there was little room with Portsmouth deep and Gil and Royal on the right.
Fraser Forster – 7
Largely unnecessary for most of the evening, Fraser Forster made the one save he needed to, which kept the game solidly in Tottenham’s favor. When Fraser palmed away Reecco Hackett-Fairchild’s attempt off the corner, it essentially closed the book on Forster’s evening just 12 minutes into the game. The clean sheet does Forster and the entire team some good.