Tottenham defeated ten man Marseille 2-0 as Champions League action returned to North London.
It was a first half of few chances as Spurs lacked a killer pass and the creativity to unlock the defence of the Ligue 1 outfit. They did excellently to frustrate the hosts and silence a noisy crowd dictating the ball for large periods.
The second period started with a bang as Heung-min Son charged through on goal only to be brought down by a sliding Chancel Mbemba, who was sent off for denying a goalscoring opportunity.
The deadlock was eventually broken after 76 minutes with Antonio Conte’s side’s first shot on target. Ivan Perisic crossed in for Richarlison to head home to spark wild celebrations.
The Brazilian then got his second of the night minutes after powering in another header.
TALKING POINT – RED CARD CHANGED THINGS
Spurs were far from their best tonight. Marseille did a great job of frustrating the hosts for large periods of the game. In the first half they dominated the ball and had over 60% possession when the half-time whistle was blown. However, things changed when Mbemba was sent off. Igor Tudor’s side had to sit deeper and not press as high but continued to make it tough for Spurs to create a clear cut chance. Eventually, the pressure told and quality deliveries along with quality headers were the difference makers.
PLAYER OF THE MATCH – RICHARLISON
Richarlison came alive in the box in the last 15 minutes of the game. Spurs put a fair few crosses in that no player in white could get their head on. But the ex-Everton man’s movement was brilliant to find space, he showed strength to hold off his marker in the air and generated so much power with both headers. It was an emotional moment for Richarlison scoring a brace on his Champions League debut and he went to see his family in the crowd after the game and was in tears.
Tottenham: Lloris 6, Romero 6, Dier 6, Lenglet 6, Emerson 7, Hojbjerg 7, Bentancur 6, Perisic 8, Son 5, Richarlison 9, Kane 7.
Subs: Kulusevski 7, Tanganga 6, Davies 7, Doherty 6, Bissouma 6.
Marseille: Lopez 5, Mbemba 4, Gigot 6, Bailly 6, Clauss 6, Rongier 6, Guendouzi 7, Veretout 6, Tavares 7, Gerson 7, Suarez 6.
Subs: Balerdi 5, Kolasinac 6, Harit 6, Gueye 6, Under 6.
47′ – RED CARD (MBEMBA) – Kane plays it through to Son and he is in on goal. Mbemba slides in – gets none of the ball and he has to go. It’s not in the penalty area.
76′ – GOAL (RICHARLISON) – There it is. Richarlison! Perisic cuts in from the left and stands a cross up with his right. Richarlison is unmarked and uses his neck muscles to power it into the goal.
80′ – GOAL (RICHARLISON) – He strikes again. It’s a wonderful cross by Hojbjerg and again Richarlison beats his man in the air to power it home. He scores a brace and his second Spurs goal.