Looking Forward


Oldham Athletic  (Away)

League Cup Round 2

Wednesday 22nd September 2004

I don't know a lot about Oldham Athletic to tell the truth, apart from the fact that former Spurs reserve defender Mark Arber now plays for them, as does former Crewe and Torquay front man Rodney Jack (who is quite quick) and David Eyres was playing last time we played Oldham.

Managed by former Rushden and Diamonds boss Brian Talbot, they will be well organised and up for the game.  His sides usually like to play a bit of football and seeing as how he spent a lot of last season watching our reserves at Stevenage he will know some Spurs players well, but not many of them will be taking part because of the huge number coming in during the summer.

The goalkeeper Chris Mawson has been on a month-to-month contract and has signed on for another month and will play only his third match for the Lactics against Spurs and the gap between Spurs and Oldham should see Spurs through, but they can't go there thinking it will be a formality.  With some of the Spurs squad being left back in London, we will have to hope it doesn't end up like our last League Cup trip to Lancashire !!

I think with the defence being much more solid, it will give the midfield (decimated though it is) an opportunity to be more forward thinking and I reckon the game will end ...

PREDICTION : -   Oldham Athletic  1   Tottenham Hotspur  3

For more information on the opponents and their history, including full result history of matches between the two teams, click here.





TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR : -  Sean Davis (knee); Michael Carrick (ankle); Mauricio Taricco (ankle); Erik Edman (knock); Noureddine Naybet (knock); Thimothee Atouba (knee); Jamie Slabber (shoulder)


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BBC Five Live Sports Extra - http://www.bbc.co.uk/fivelive/sportsextra/schedule.shtml



Oldham Athletic   0    Tottenham Hotspur   6      (Half-time score : 0-1)
League Cup - Round 2 Venue :   Boundary Park
Wednesday 22nd September 2004 Kick Off :  20.00 p.m.
Crowd :   8,548 Referee :   R. Beeby
Weather :  Wet, breezy
Teams : - 
Oldham Athletic : 


Holden (c)

Eyre (Barlow )

Killen (Jack 64)

Unused subs: 

Tottenham Hotspur :   



Davies (Ricketts 72)
Redknapp (c)  (Mendes 62)

Keane (Defoe 68)

Unused subs: 

Colours : -  (kits courtesy of http://www.colours-of-football.com)
Oldham Athletic Tottenham Hotspur
Scorers : -  
Oldham Athletic


Tottenham Hotspur

Kanoute  38, 92
Keane 66
Defoe 71
Bunjevcevic 88
Gardner 90

Cards : -  
Oldham Athletic 



Tottenham Hotspur  



Match Report : -  
Wrapping up what I think must be our biggest away win in this competition with three goals in the last six minutes might have been harsh on Oldham, but the gap between the clubs fifty six places apart in the league set-up was evidenced by the clinical finishing.

Oldham did give Spurs some trouble in the first half, with Jermain Johnson's physical presence giving Anthony Gardner some tough moments.  He won a number of free-kicks by backing into the tall Spurs central defender, who got drawn into giving him a bump that the referee saw.  A string of free-kicks and corners rained in amongst the persistent rain, but the home side failed to make many direct efforts on goal.

Keller was drafted in for his first game of the season, along with Mabizela and Bunjy, but he rarely looked comfortable.  From the first minute when he raced out to the corner of the box and let the ball sneak past him (through his legs), his handling was shaky from corners and the opportunities that the Lactics had came from his flapping at the corners.  

The Northern Spurs were out in force and they saw the moves founder as Robbie Keane slowed down the game when it looked like Tottenham could break at speed.  Passes went stray on both sides and the skiddy surface did not always help the weight of passing, with the ball gaining pace off the wet turf.

Robbie could have got on the score-sheet in the 15th minute, when he volleyed Kanoute's cross back across goal from the far post and then Spurs were denied a penalty when Davies' cross was hit to the far post, where Brown was poised to head home before a defender clattered into him with no hope of getting the ball.  It was weird that 17 minutes later OJ had a free-kick given against him for exactly the same type of challenge but of course, it was nowhere near the penalty area !!

In the 37th minute, Tottenham gained their first corner, which was taken by Keano.  Losing his marker on the six yard line, Fredi found some space to head home the ball unchallenged.  But the lead almost disappeared in the next minute when a low ball into the box fell behind King and Killen, standing five yards out, swung a boot at it.  Unfortunately for him and the home fans, it was a little behind him and the ball hit his standing foot on the way through, taking the pace of fit and leaving KK a simple grab at a half hit ball.

Two minutes after the goal, Spurs next corner was pulled back to Redknapp outside the penalty box, but his half volley cleared the closing defender, the goal and the stand !!  Just before the break, Tottenham had an even better chance, when Kanoute knocked a cross down in the area and Robbie got the blind side of his marker.  As he stretched for the ball, he tried to knock it in from a couple of yards out, but could only get it over the bar.

So, the break came and with a one goal lead, it could have been a nervous time in the second half.  The expected surge from Oldham did not arrive after the interval, leaving Spurs to push forward.

Three minutes into the half, Kanoute played the ball left to Jackson, who had trouble getting past his man all night.  He played it back to Brown, who curled an effort that finished about a yard and a half wide.  In the 51st minute Killen and then two minutes later, Johnson both fired shots across the face of goal.  Play was more stretched now and Spurs broke to allow Keane to set-up Fredi, who got through two Oldham defenders, but blazed his shot high on the hour.

Then five minutes later, a long free-kick from Keller was headed on by Kanoute into the Oldham box.  The keeper came for it, Arber, the former Spurs reserve defender, nudged the ball past him and Robbie picked it up.  He snuck towards goal and blasted it past the man on the line from a narrow angle to give Spurs a 2-0 lead.

Keane was replaced by Jermain Defoe a minute or two later and what followed was not in the script of either team.  A corner to Oldham floated into the box, Keller flapped and the ball then pinged about the box with King and Mabizela blocking shots.  It finally got cleared to the right and the ball was played forward and Jackson played a difficult ball out to the left, where Defoe collected it and as the keeper came out, passed it past him into the net, just under the foot of a defender and just inside the post.  The third goal killed Oldham off, even though there was still 20 minutes left.  

Spurs went on attacking and Defoe struck a quick-fire shot into the side-netting and Fredi had a shot blocked.   From a corner, Tottenham got a fourth from a most unlikely source.  The ball was flicked on at the near post by Eyres, with his keeper right behind him, leaving the ball landing in the middle of the area where Goran Bunjevcevic was standing.  His left foot volley found it's way through the vacant gap in the middle of the goal for his first strike for Spurs in the 88th minute.

Weirder was still to come, as Gardner nipped in front of Jack to collect a clearance from the Oldham defence and strode forward unchallenged to hit a low shot off the greasy turf from 20 yards that hit the stanchion inside the net for Tottenham's fifth.  But credit to Oldham, they still tried to salvage something from the game and Eyres' injury time drive had to be tipped over by Keller to retain the clean sheet from this tie.

But from the corner, Spurs broke away once more and Ricketts played in Kanoute on the right corner of the box and as the defender backed off him, Fredi let fly with a powerful drive that ripped into the top right hand corner of the net.

It was a professional job well done and although the first half saw Spurs stutter rather than fire on all cylinders in the second, Oldham rarely threatened seriously and although the goal rush at the end lakes it look like a heavier defeat than perhaps Athletic deserved, it showed that given the chances you have to put them away.  So, a trot up to Bolton in the next round and I am sure that Jacques will be getting his tactics worked out for that one over the next few weeks.


The Funky Phantom




Oldham is a  bloody long way.  It's North, but it is a long way North.  And it rains.  A lot.  Just like it did back in 1988 for the FA Cup tie.

But we were not worried about that when we were on our way home with six goals to warm us on the way back to the Beautiful South.  And it was the thought that other Spurs sides of the past might have succumbed to Oldham's physical approach, but this team stood firm.  

The surprising thing is that apart from Mendes, when he came on, the rest of the players who took the field were all at Tottenham last season under David Pleat.  So why the big change ?

It is down to some shrewd tactical work and astute purchases by Santini, Jol and Arnesen to form a side that is hard to beat.  Keller's fumbles did cast doubt on whether we might get out of this tie still in one piece, but the team shut the door to the home side's advances and made sure that there was not event he hint of a consolation goal.

The finishing was a bit lax in the first half and if it had been better, the Spurs side would have been more than the one goal ahead at the break.  Keano missed two from inside the six yard box and a penalty that we should have had was not spotted by the ref or linesman.  So it was Fredi's bullet header from a corner after he lost his marker very well that was the difference between the two sides and it might not even have been that had Killen not mis-kicked in front of goal straight after Kanoute's opener.

The rain and tough Oldham approach had Spurs losing it sometimes in midfield and the breaking from the back was sometimes lacking support, but that was all put right in the second period.

A neat finish after Robbie had tip-toed between Mawson and Arber to collect a loose ball made it two and then his replacement Defoe finished in Greavesie style to put Spurs three up.  Bunjy and Gardner joined the scoring party from the back with a volley and a low skidding drive, before Fredi wrapped it up with a thumping sixth.

Wet, but happy, we made the trek home with the knowledge that Bolton in the next round will mean a return to rainy Lancashire, but with a potentially stronger side able to be fielded and a few more games to bed in before then means we could yet see a solid Spurs side opening up to be as successful.

Ted Maul


Other scores in his round :
Aston Villa 3 QPR 1 Wednesday
Birmingham City 3 Lincoln City 1 Tuesday
Blackburn Rovers 3 Bournemouth (a.e.t - won 7-6 on pens) 3 Wednesday
Boston United 1 Fulham 4 Wednesday
Bristol City 2 Everton (a.e.t - won 4-3 on penalties) 2 Tuesday
Burnley (a.e.t - won 4-2 on penalties) 1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 1 Tuesday
Colchester United (after extra time) 2 West Bromwich Albion 1 Tuesday
Coventry City 1 Sheffield Wednesday 0 Wednesday
Crewe Alexandra (a.e.t - won 4-2 on penalties) 3 Sunderland 3 Tuesday
Crystal Palace (after extra time) 2 Hartlepool United  1 Tuesday
Doncaster Rovers 2 Ipswich Town 0 Tuesday
Grimsby Town 1 Charlton Athletic 2 Tuesday
Leeds United 1 Swindon Town 0 Tuesday
Manchester City 7 Barnsley 1 Tuesday
Milton Keynes Dons 1 Cardiff City 4 Tuesday
Northampton Town 0 SCBC 3 Wednesday
Norwich City 1 Bristol Rovers 0 Tuesday
Nottingham Forest (after extra time) 2 Rotherham United 1 Tuesday
Reading 0 Watford 3 Tuesday
Tranmere Rovers 0 Portsmouth 1 Tuesday
West Ham United 3 Notts. County 2 Tuesday
Wrexham 2 Sheffield United 3 Tuesday
Yeovil Town 0 Bolton Wanderers 2 Tuesday


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