Barclays Premier League
Tottenham Hotspur vs. Manchester United
Venue: White Hart Lane
Date: Sunday, 10 April 2016
Kick-off: 16:00 BST
Manchester United suffered a second 3-0 loss in North London of the season, as Tottenham Hotspur scored three times in six second half minutes to claim the victory.
Dele Alli, Toby Alderweireld and Erik Lamela bagged the goals that keep Spurs’ title hopes alive whilst United’s top four hopes have been severely dented.
This result leaves United four points behind Manchester City with six games to play in the race for fourth spot.
After a delayed kick-off by half an hour due to traffic congestion, United actually started off the better of the two sides, dominating the first 20 minutes, but only having a deflected shot fall behind after Timothy Fosu-Mensah cut inside onto his right foot to show for it.
This invited the hosts back into the game, with Christian Eriksen curling an effort just wide of David De Gea’s left-hand post.
The Spanish goalkeeper then fumbled a cross, but Fosu-Mensah slid in to take the ball away from Harry Kane, only for Eriksen’s cross to keep the move alive, but Lamela glanced a header wide from close range.
A blistering run from right-back Kyle Walker saw him burst past Marcos Rojo, but his toe-poke towards goal was cleared by Fosu-Mensah, with the game goalless at the interval.
Looking to strike early after the break, Eriksen’s near post effort was beaten away by De Gea, as Eric Dier’s deflected attempt and Kane’s low shot were both held.
Jesse Lingard then dragged a shot wide as Anthony Martial breezed past three Tottenham players, only to see his resulting effort palmed away by fellow Frenchman Hugo Lloris.
Then came the opening goal, with Lamela winning the ball amongst some scrappy play despite being grounded, which allowed Kane to set Eriksen free, and the Dane’s awareness saw him play the perfect pass across goal for Alli to tap home.
Substitute Matteo Darmian was then booked for a foul on Kane, with Lamela’s resulting free-kick glanced in by Alderweireld as Spurs quickly doubled their lead.
If that wasn’t enough to shell-shock the visitors, Danny Rose’s low cross from the left was swept into the back of the net by Lamela with a first time finish.
The rest of the game was a non-event; with Lamela bending wide before full-time ended a miserable afternoon for United.
It would be silly to deny the late arrival as being instrumental in the disruption of United’s pre-game preparation, but it is the club’s duty to arrive on time.
The late kick-off on a Sunday allows plenty of time for travel, and another trip to London awaits this coming Wednesday, with a 7pm kick-off at Upton Park as Louis van Gaal’s side take on West Ham United in the FA Cup quarter-final replay.
Manchester United: De Gea; Fosu-Mensah (Darmian 68), Smalling, Blind, Rojo; Carrick, Schneiderlin, Mata (Memphis 77), Lingard, Martial; Rashford (Young 46).
Subs: Romero, Darmian, Young, Valencia, Herrera, Fellaini, Memphis.
Manager: Louis van Gaal
Spurs: Lloris; Walker, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Rose; Dier, Dembele; Lamela (Chadli 87), Eriksen, Alli (Mason 90+3); Kane (Son 89).
Subs: Vorm, Son, Mason, Trippier, Chadli, Wimmer, Carroll.
Manager: Mauricio Pochettino