When we got the draw a few weeks ago, I thought our Cup run was over before it began. We hadn’t beaten Spurs in the Cup since Queen Elizabeth, or something around then. Harry Redknapp actually takes this competition seriously, and the match date wasn’t close enough to Spurs’ Champions League duties that we could catch them distracted.
But before the game even began, there was a glimmer of hope: Redknapp’s lineup. His hand was forced a bit with injuries in the middle, and I doubt he wanted a replay — February 19; three days after the first leg tie with AC Milan — but a 4-1-4-1 with Sandro as the holding midfielder and Defoe all alone up top? Surely could this be our day?
On oue side, Hughes has settled into a groove that coincidentally Roy found success with: the triangle-esque offense that relies on a striker, striker/midfielder slotted in behind, and the wings cutting in. Last year Roy found a formula of Zamora up top, Gera just behind, and Dempsey/Duff/Davies crashing in on the wings to great success. Now it is Andy Johnson, Dembele, and the usual Dempsey/Duff/Davies trio; with Gera subbing in where needed.
The rest was history. Rich has all the tasty details in the post below so go read that again, and savor it.
Today made up for that 4-0 loss four years ago, a horrible afternoon that, to me, began the downfall of Coleman. It also made up for last year’s crushing exit where David freaking Bentley scored and put our Wembley dreams to bed. And this past fall’s game where they whined and complained enough to have the ref overturn the linesman, and win the match.
Right before the match Chopper posted on Twitter: “Dear gods of football. Please let us win today…”. Well, God answered our prayers.
Enjoy these random screen-captures, a la the ever-awesome 30fps: