JUST IN: Injury hope for Brennan Johnson and James Maddison as Postecoglou demonstrates his genuine Tottenham potential.

This Tottenham Hotspur is an unique team. Over the years, Spurs have not had much luck playing at the Emirates Stadium, and prior to the most recent North London Derby, the regular cast of former Arsenal players and analysts were joyfully projecting a humiliating defeat of the guests.

The young Tottenham team led by Ange Postecoglou, who was well attired for the occasion, had other plans. Yes, Declan Rice’s substitution at halftime and Gabriel Jesus’ stunning miss in the first half felt like turning points in their favour, but Arsenal was mostly neutralised after the anticipated good start and was occasionally even outplayed at their own stadium as the game went on.

Although it was only a point, Postecoglou was aware that the performance demonstrated how much the team has embraced his courageous, aggressive, and attacking style. His raised fist as he approached the crowd also demonstrated that, despite his era’s early stages, this was the kind of performance that could advance his goals.

The improvement over the lacklustre performance from last season, even though it was made worse by Emerson Royal’s dismissal in that game’s 62nd minute, was like night and day.

Spurs only attempted 307 passes last year compared to Arsenal’s 565, and they only had 35% of the possession. Compared to Arsenal’s 22, they only had seven shots.

The Tottenham players were not deterred by the occasion or their occasional errors this time around as they competed in front of a boisterous Emirates crowd. With Postecoglou’s support and his faith in them, it only made them stronger.

His team played more passes than their hosts (435 to 370) and enjoyed a higher percentage of possession within the Arsenal stadium (54%). They took 13 shots total, equal to Arsenal, but only five of those were on goal.

Even though they had that great Jesus chance and a few early easy stops from Guglielmo Vicario, Arsenal ultimately had to rely on an own goal and a VAR-encouraged penalty to earn a draw.

Brennan Johnson pushed David Raya into a few stops, one of which was particularly impressive, and Spurs scored two good goals as a result of fluid plays that ended with Son Heung Min scoring a captain’s finish. A Richarlison shot that was deflected in the 99th minute agonisingly missed the Arsenal goal.

Romero’s penalty decision was one of those that will be viewed from various angles by different people.

Former players claim that the Argentine’s arms are powerless to stop the shot when he launches himself into the block, while others simply claim that his arm is raised and blocks the shot. If it was at the other end, the majority of Tottenham supporters would probably demand that penalty.

“Well, as a defender, I would like to think that shouldn’t be given against me,” Gary Neville said during the Sky Sports commentary. VAR says they’re not sure after looking at it 25 times.

“The defender lays his knee on the ground and raises his arm in a desperate attempt to block the ball; try that at home; for me, that’s a natural stance. I believe that a lot of people will agree with me and a lot of people will disagree, but how can they be sure if they consider it for such a long time? To try and halt the shot, I simply believe it to be a natural action.

Postecoglou doesn’t typically argue with referees on the sidelines, but the fact that he was even shaking his head there revealed his surprise at the official’s choice after looking at his monitor.

He said in his news conference that the current handball regulation is just confusing him.

I was unable to witness the occurrence, but I have no knowledge of the handball regulation, so mate. Actually, I don’t. I witnessed it yesterday against Wolves, and it just seems like sometimes if it touches your hand it’s a penalty and other times it isn’t. I have no notion, the Australian replied.

It’s the only game rule I don’t really understand. I don’t know how you’re expected to block things and be in a natural position unless we start creating armless defenders.

“Mate, it is what it is. I don’t understand the handball rule, but you kind of hope that these things balance themselves out over the course of a year. To be honest, I don’t know how referees feel about what I’ve said to them in the past.

He responded, “I think any clarity would be good because I have got no idea, mate,” when asked if he wanted the regulation clarified. I’ve seen all different kinds of handballs given and all different kinds of handballs not given, and they all seem to me to be the same, so it’s probably just me, but I have no idea what the handball rule is. I’m not sure. I fail to comprehend it.

The choice would have been more contentious and debatable on another day, just like Eddie Nketiah’s risky challenge on Vicario, which could have broken his leg if the Spurs custodian hadn’t managed to get his foot off the ground in time. VAR seemed to vanish in that instant.

Thankfully, the Italian avoided serious harm, and this game offered much more than just those contentious moments.

This was the biggest illustration yet of how Postecoglou’s unmistakable message that he will accept responsibility for any botched ball when Spurs try to play his way had broken through the fear factor at the club.

The calibre of the younger players’ performances added to how remarkable Tottenham’s performance was.

They should have faltered in the face of such a situation and such a loud home audience, according to logic. Instead, the younger players for Spurs and the more experienced arrivals simply played football without being constrained by the past.

Nobody better embodied the character that led Postecoglou to choose them and believe in them than Destiny Udogie.

Outside of Tottenham, people are beginning to realise how talented the 20-year-old Italian is, and more eyes were on the match between him and Bukayo Saka.

Udogie made a strong start in the opening exchanges, but after 15 minutes he was sent off for a hasty, late challenge on the England international. Then, maybe startled, a minute later, he dropped a backpass that went into Eddie Nketiah’s path, but Vicario made a great low-cut stop.

After ten minutes, Udogie was facing criticism for enabling Saka to slip inside and fire the shot that Cristian Romero deflected into his own goal. In reality, White was unable to approach Brennan Johnson because of Brennan Johnson’s dash back between them when he was pursuing White.

It was crucial, nevertheless, that Udogie then displayed his personality. The Italy U21 international ended up dominating Saka, one of the top wingers in the Premier League, for the whole of the game despite receiving the yellow card. He did not run away.

Udogie was a menace moving forward in addition to making eight tackles, four clearances, and one shot block. James Maddison was put on the attack by his thoughtful header as Son prepared to score his first equaliser.

The rookie left-back may gain a lot of confidence from this performance because Saka is one of the toughest wingers in the league, and he will improve on the early errors he made in only his sixth Premier League game.

Pedro Porro, 24, is quickly dispelling any lingering concerns about his defensive prowess on the opposing wing. With his ability to play both as a regular right-back and as an inverted full-back when moving inside, the Spaniard may well be Tottenham’s biggest surprise thus far in the season.

In a busy performance that required less of him going forward than usual, Porro made five tackles, one interception, and two clearances. Pape Matar Sarr and Dejan Kulusevski down the right took on the majority of the advanced work.

Postecoglou responded, “Spot on,” when asked if Udogie’s boldness in accepting that early booking was exactly what he was hoping to see. Both of our fullbacks, in my opinion, had challenging tasks today. Outstanding wide players for Arsenal are their main points of threat.

Destiny receiving a yellow card early could have complicated things, but after seeing how he handled it, I believed he was the most important player on that side of the pitch.

“He battled with receiving a yellow card and had a pretty powerful finish. He and the other guys are both learning a lot from it. Going head-to-head with a top side, they overcame that.

“You would much rather win and wouldn’t be happy if you lost, but if you put the outcome to one side, you walk away thinking, “Okay if we continue down this road, we can be a team that competes against the best”

Micky van de Ven must be in the running as well if Maddison is being cited as one of the Premier League’s top acquisitions of the summer.

The 22-year-old played in the crucible of his maiden North London Derby with the air of a seasoned veteran.

He only had to make one tackle the entire game since he had a flawless read on the majority of the play. He did make four clearances, win two ground duels and one aerial duels, and add one interception, but largely he just moved the opposing team’s players out of harm’s way.

The huge young Dutchman is so composed and cool when he has the ball, and his pace allows him to escape the press just as easily as he can pass his way out of it, which he did with a passing accuracy of 94.2%.

Van de Ven has played 540 more minutes at Spurs this season than anyone else, which shows how much Postecoglou believes in him.

The Australian acknowledged that he handed chairman Daniel Levy very clear transfer requests and left very few options on the table during the summer, which made it both simple and challenging for him.

Simple as that Van de Ven is a brilliant illustration of why you should trust Postecoglou’s discernment because he knows exactly who he wants and who he can see fitting and succeeding within his team. He is aware of what he wants because he is familiar with the final result.

Brennan Johnson, who cost £47.5 million to acquire from Nottingham Forest, made his complete debut in a North London Derby.

The 22-year-old showed off just how dynamic a player he will be moving forward for Spurs. He constantly made positive movements and gave White a lot of trouble on that flank.

Although his shot could have been more precise, his mobility to get to those spots demonstrated how much the young Welshman has going for him. He possesses all the physical qualities and natural talents that his new head coach needs to mould him.

Postecoglou, who appeared to be just as thrilled about his acquisition as anyone, will turn to him frequently because to his versatility on the front line.

With what football.london understands to be a tight hamstring, Johnson did pull up holding his left leg in the 62nd minute because he did not want to make the situation worse.

That the Spurs physio could be seen stretching his left leg out appeared to add further weight to it not being a serious problem, but it will be looked at this week to check there is no underlying issue.
Johnson has been playing catch-up with his fitness this season after an ankle injury on international duty last summer wiped out much of his pre-season.

Postecoglou will be hoping the Wales international can face Liverpool next weekend because he offers a different option to his attacking team-mates. Manor Solomon did make a nuisance of himself though after he replaced him with his dribbling ability.
Another young player who showed no nerves on the day was Sarr, who turned 21 this month.

Johnson has been playing catch-up with his fitness this season after an ankle injury on international duty last summer wiped out much of his pre-season.
Postecoglou will be hoping the Wales international can face Liverpool next weekend because he offers a different option to his attacking team-mates. Manor Solomon did make a nuisance of himself though after he replaced him with his dribbling ability.
Another young player who showed no nerves on the day was Sarr, who turned 21 this month.
Like Udogie, the Senegal international plays like he was born to play Premier League football and defies his years. Sarr is the definition of a box-to-box midfielder because of how much ground he covers. He has the drive to shoot at goal or throw in a cross before sprinting back to make a tackle on the perimeter of his box.

“There’s a real will and desire to become the team we want to be, which includes making sure that you’re disciplined and you’re buying into the team ethos, and we had a really young team out there today,” Postecoglou said to football.london.v

Vic, who was playing in his first derby, Destiny, Van de Ven, Pape Matar Sarr, Brennan, who is in his early 20s, Porro, and even Kulusevski, who is only 23 years old, were all members of a young team, but we should be extremely happy of the veteran players we did have on board.

“Sonny was just on a different level, not just his goals although they were outstanding, but his work rate, his work ethic was incredible,” said Maddison of Sonny. “Romero was outstanding, Bissouma has been brilliant all year.”

Young attacker Alejo Veliz made his debut on the bench as well after impressing Postecoglou and his coaches in training this week with his lethal finishing.

Spurs have put together a young player group that may wind up being a golden generation, and Ange Postecoglou is the perfect manager to help them along the road.

The leaders

To steer a bunch of young players in the proper way, every group needs a few leaders strewn throughout.

When Spurs most needed it, Son Heung-min and James Maddison took it upon themselves to get their team back into the game twice.

According to Postecoglou, neither player entered the game in peak physical condition, but based on their effort and intensity level, you would never have known.

They played with quality as well; Maddison made up for being taken out of the picture for Jesus’ opportunity in the first half by turning and teeing up Son to deftly flick home inside the right-hand post.

Later, after sprinting on and playing in Son with a superbly weighted pass, Maddison outran the hesitant Arsenal substitute Jorginho. This time, the South Korean star coolly rolled his first-time finish inside the left-hand post.

The fact that the goal was scored just one minute after the hosts’ penalty, which they successfully converted, stunned Arsenal. Mikel Arteta later acknowledged that it “emotionally” impacted his team.

Following the game, Postecoglou praised his skipper Son in great detail.

Both as a player and a leader, he has been great. Now that we have him playing the position of nine, he just works so hard,” he remarked. He has such a strong focus on the team, it is amazing. His first consideration is always what is best for the team, and when he places himself in those situations, he has the ability to succeed.

“I believed Sonny was there to finish them off, and Madders was brilliant with both assists. He truly cares about what we’re doing, so I’m happy for him.

It is wonderful that he is receiving his reward because he, Madders, and Romero, as well as players like Bissouma on the pitch, are largely responsible for the team environment I discuss.

Postecoglou’s approach

Whether they knew it or not, Tottenham Hotspur were desperate for Ange Postecoglou.

The Australian has given Spurs an identity they had seemingly forgotten or even sold out in their fruitless pursuit of titles by any means necessary, from the top of the club to the players in the first team and then below in the academy.

Although Antonio Conte helped Tottenham in his first season there, one criticism that has always been thrown at him is that it is unclear whether players the much-praised manager genuinely helped grow and improve personally.

Kulusevski and Bentancur provided an instant boost upon their arrival, though it was brief. Kane and Son provided more of the same in their first season under Conte, despite the fact that the latter won the Golden Boot under him before drastically deteriorating in his system the following year.

Postecoglou is without a doubt the best. Even though the Premier League season has just had six games, every starter has improved. Those who returned from last season have improved—in particular, Bissouma, Romero, Porro, and Son—and those who have joined have absorbed his straightforward instructions, gotten right to work, and raised the bar on their performances.

The team has renewed faith in kids. Postecoglou insists on it and dispels all of their trepidation by taking responsibility for their errors. The new head coach isn’t concerned with protecting his own reputation; he always knew his own value, even when others would ignore and undervalue him. He also likely realises that courageous, confident players will inevitably make themselves and him appear good.

“They are a tremendously good side, in my opinion. After the game, Arteta said, “They are really well coached. “You can sense the team’s spirit and energy, but I don’t think it’s appropriate for anyone to start talking about [what they will be vying for at the end of the season] after only six games.”

Under the Australian, Maddison thinks Tottenham is a different team.

The midfielder stated, “When neutrals talk about Tottenham, they frequently say soft, wimpy, bottle it, Spursy, all that nonsense. “I believe the past few weeks indicate that we might be moving in a different direction.”

Postecoglou hopes that this performance against Arteta’s title contenders and the mood created by the players will continue the fast-tracking of his present work, but he is not getting carried away despite a significantly quicker start to life at Spurs than at many of his previous clubs.

It doesn’t alter my opinion of where I believe we are right now, in my opinion. Regardless of the outcome, I stated before the game that we still had six games left. The fact that the players have developed a genuinely positive environment where they challenge one another daily has perhaps delighted me the most, he remarked.

They will follow what we try to provide them in terms of information and structure if it helps them become the team we want them to be. It increases growth, in my opinion, when the players’ group expresses that kind of belief.

“From that perspective, the start is still the start for me, but I’m simply extremely proud of the way the players have embraced the notion that we’re going to be this kind of football team,” he said. “We still have a long way to go.

Regarding the game on Sunday, he continued, “For me, it wasn’t about the result; it was about the performance. You could come away from this game knowing that the score was a draw, as I previously stated, but I don’t feel that way right now.

“From that perspective, the start is still the start for me, but I’m simply extremely proud of the way the players have embraced the notion that we’re going to be this kind of football team,” he said. “We still have a long way to go.

Regarding the game on Sunday, he continued, “For me, it wasn’t about the result; it was about the performance. You could come away from this game knowing that the score was a draw, as I previously stated, but I don’t feel that way right now.

He will have time when the road bumps do show up thanks to the unbeaten start to life in the Premier League and the amazing change in the way football is played.

The outcomes have also swiftly improved his ability to effectively push through the adjustments that he thinks are fundamentally necessary, both for his team and for the entire club.

The effective Jurgen Klopp The crowd in the stadium will be louder and more connected when Liverpool plays against Tottenham the following Saturday.

This young Spurs team will face yet another difficult test, but they now possess the confidence that comes with competing against one of the league’s greatest teams and demonstrating that Postecoglou’s method is effective.

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