Brighton vs Tottenham: Full Match Review, Score & Update
The Mauricio Pochettino crisis deepens: 10 goals conceded in the space of five days and this time not all the holes in this Tottenham Hotspur team were punched through by a team as good as the champions of Germany.
After the seven-goal Bayern Munich apocalypse on Tuesday night, this fragile Spurs team was demolished anew in Sussex by a Brighton and Hove Albion side of relative inexperience but a lot of heart and bravery. There were two goals from the outstanding Irish teenager Aaron Connolly on his first Premier League start for the club and strong evidence in his finishing that he had paid attention to Serge Gnabry’s one-man demolition of Spurs in the second half of Tuesday’s Champions League game.
Hugo Lloris was carried off in the eighth minute, still crying out in pain as he was carried down the tunnel being administered oxygen for what looked like a horribly broken left arm that crumpled under the Frenchman as he fell into his goal. It mattered less that the accident had been prefaced by another howler from Lloris, misjudging a cross and having to let go of it on his goalline right in front of Neal Maupay who headed the loose ball in for the first in less than three minutes.
The Brighton striker is a much less famous Frenchman that the World Cup winner who may now miss the rest of this crisis-season for Pochettino. Maupay was second in the goalscorer race in the Championship last season before he left Brentford and was another of those in whom Graham Potter put his faith on this Saturday lunchtime to earn the club their first league win since the opening day of the season.
So too Steven Alzate, who was on loan at Swindon Town last season and against Spurs was making just his second Premier League start. Adam Webster, another new boy signed from the Championship, was solid in defence. Brighton were excellent: comfortable on the ball and aggressive when they needed to be, the vision that Potter has for his team coming together perfectly.
For Spurs, however, this was dreadful. Pochettino began with a new 4-2-3-1 formation which he then abandoned at half-time when he replaced the ineffective Tanguy Ndombele with Harry Winks. He went to three at the back to little effect. The Spurs manager was booed when he replaced Heung-Min Son with Lucas Moura on 72 minutes. If it could go wrong then it did go wrong.
The first for Connolly came when substitute Paulo Gazzaniga could only parry the 19-year-old’s first touch from Pascal Gross’ cross and the Irishman buried the rebound. For his second goal, Connolly cut in from the left on his right foot past Toby Alderweireld, as Gnabry did on Tuesday and found the bottom corner of the Spurs’ goal.