Free-scoring Spurs smash United for six
Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho praises his team for going 'for the jugular' in record-breaking 6-1 victory at Old Trafford
05 October, 2020 — By Dan Carrier
MANCHESTER UNITED 1 (Fernandes 2 pen, Martial sent off 28)
SPURS 6 (Ndombele 4, Son 7, 37, Kane 30, 79 pen, Aurier 51)
SPURS boss Jose Mourinho said his team had “gone for the jugular” in this record-breaking 6-1 thrashing of Manchester United.
On an afternoon where Tottenham were simply irresistible, Mourinho’s project came good. His team have got their act together following the opening day defeat by Everton.
Spurs were merciless before the break, and merciful after.
Perhaps already having so many minutes in their legs – having played Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday and then Sunday again – their generosity in front of goal in the second half at Old Trafford was understandable.
They had the extra man after Anthony Martial was sent off on 28 minutes, and it meant they could take the foot off the gas.
After the game, Mourinho said: “I can imagine some anti-Spurs people will say it was 11 against 10 for the second half, but we were so much better for the whole of the first half, when it was 11 against 11. We had lots of confidence, despite losing 1-0 to a silly penalty.
“The team just played, played, played, and reacted. When we felt weakness, we went for the jugular, and you don’t do that if you are not ultra-confident.”
The Spurs boss added: “So, an amazing performance, historic result and very important three points because we go up in the table.”
On social media in the build up, fans joshed about what time United would be awarded their weekly penalty. As it turned out, it would be in the first 30 seconds. Davinson Sanchez’s clumsy challenge on Martial was penalised and Bruno Fernandes stroked home.
It was merely a prelude for a wonderful attacking response by Mourinho’s men.
Within minutes, a weak back header from Harry Maguire put Luke Shaw in trouble. The snapping Erik Lamela put United under pressure, and the ball fell loose and Tanguy Ndombele steadied to pounce and thrash home.
Three minutes later it was 2-1. Harry Kane was clattered by Maguire on the halfway line, and the quick-thinking Spurs striker got up, put one hand on the ball to signal it had stopped moving, and then played an instant pass for Heung-Min Son to chase. Son’s quick feet were equal to Kane’s quick-thinking, and Tottenham were ahead.
It was from a corner on 28 minutes when United’s afternoon really hit the deck. Lamela and Martial tussled, the Argentine went down theatrically and the referee went straight for the red.
Lamela made the most of not very much at all. But it was a piece of gamesmanship that reflects the spirit Mourinho has installed.
In the Amazon documentary All Or Nothing, Mourinho told his players he thought they were too nice and that had to change. Well, not any more.
Lamela set about United with venom to disrupt their rhythm, and it worked. There is no surprise that the midfielder has become a talisman for Mourinho.
The pummelling continued when Kane got one after combining with Son and drilling home. Son made it 4-1 before the break when he clipped in at the near post.
Spurs spent the second half holding on to the ball and making their extra man count. It was five on 51 minutes when the re-invigorated Serge Aurier smashed an effort in from the right. Kane then made it six from the spot after Ben Davies was tripped by Paul Pogba.
Mourinho has had nearly 11 months and two transfer windows to shape the squad. This is now his side.
With the mouthwatering prospect of Gareth Bale making his debut after the international break, this tub thumping victory is a sign that the painful rebuild Mauricio Pochettino said was needed looks nearly there.
Manchester United: De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Bailly, Maguire, Shaw, Matic (McTominey 45), Pogba, Greenwood (van de Beek, 67), Fernandes (Fred, 45), Rashford, Martial
Substitutes not used: Henderson, Lindelof, Lingard, Mata
Spurs: Lloris, Aurier, Dier, Sanchez, Reguilon, Hojbjerg, Sissoko, Ndombele (Alli, 69), Lamela (Moura, 45), Son (Davies, 73), Kane
Subs: Hart, Doherty, Alderweireld, Winks