Tottenham produce worst performance of season to set alarm bells ringing

There was no denying that when Tottenham lost 3-0 to Fulham at Craven Cottage last month, they had just delivered their worst performance of the season. Make way for a new nadir.

That day was a rout, but this 4-0 defeat to Newcastle came dangerously close to becoming a free-for-all as those in black and white stripes scythed Tottenham’s defence open at will. There were more than shades of Spurs’s 6-1 defeat here last season; they were so very close to being every bit as bad.

Micky van de Ven must have been tempted to change shorts at half-time, the Dutchman sent tumbling onto his backside twice in two minutes as Alexander Isak and Anthony Gordon effectively settled the game after half an hour.

If the score-line had not been so utterly rampant, more air-time would be spent pondering how Tottenham managed to be quite so toothless in front of goal.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

They had so few chances at St James’ Park yet spent so much of the match queueing up outside Newcastle’s box, boasting over 70 per cent possession. The first goal was a rapid counter-attack started when the off-colour duo of James Maddison and Heung-min Son collided with each other in Newcastle’s area, losing the ball, and soon conceding at the other end.

But, while Spurs lacked ingenuity in front of goal, it was the often cataclysmic defending that would have so stunned those high up in the away end.

Van de Ven, as mentioned, was sent twice to the turf and Porro’s nightmarish no-look back-pass led directly to Newcastle’s second. It was alarming how easily Isak turned the former for the third and then, to sum up a miserable after, just how Fabian Schar was left totally unmarked to head home the fourth from a late corner.


It is a straight shootout between Spurs and Aston Villa for fourth spot and, unless England gets an extra spot next season, for Champions League football.

Spurs have a game in hand on Villa and, with Unai Emery’s side visiting league leaders Arsenal on Sunday, this weekend felt a glorious opportunity to tighten their grip on fourth. Produce another display like this and Spurs will have no chance.