Spurs Seal Bielsa’s Fate: Leeds United 0-4 Tottenham Hotspur
Tottenham Hotspur were relentless on Saturday afternoon and came out 4-0 winners away at Elland Road. The fourth consecutive defeat for Leeds United left question marks over Marcelo Bielsa’s head, and the Argentine was relieved of his duties on Sunday morning.
Despite conceding six goals to Liverpool in midweek, Leeds stuck to their game plan and came firing out the blocks, looking to take the game to Tottenham.
Their high intensity press left them exposed at the back and allowed Tottenham to take advantage.
Goals down the right-hand side from Matt Doherty and a wonderful solo run from Dejan Kulusevski in the opening 15 minutes left Leeds with a mountain to climb.
Things went from bad to worse for the hosts when Harry Kane expertly finished from an acute angle. Pierre-Emile Højbjerg found himself with plenty of time and space in the middle of the park and floated a ball over the defence. Harry Kane never took his eyes of the ball and allowed it to drop onto his weaker left foot. The Englishman managed to adjust his body and put it back across goal, giving Illan Meslier no chance.
Tottenham managed to gain a quick lead, but Leeds had plenty of opportunities to bring themselves into the match.
Robin Koch struck Hugo Lloris’s post, Raphinia created numerous opportunities and Dan James wasted a glorious opportunity inside the penalty area.
Tottenham sealed the game with 5 minutes left on the clock.
Harry Kane had dropped deep to get more involved in the build-up and managed to send Heung Min Son on his way. Son kept composed and lifted the ball over Meslier, giving the visitors a well-deserved victory.
Son’s goal, assisted by Kane, broke the record for the most amount of direct goal combinations in the Premier League. The Tottenham duo have now overtaken Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba who previously held the record with 36 goal combinations.
The disappointing defeat left Leeds looking weary, rundown, and – more importantly – facing a very real relegation battle.
After three incredibly successful years at the reins of Leeds United, Marcelo Bielsa has now left his role and the American coach, Jesse Marsch was announced as his successor on Monday night.
#LUFC can today announce the appointment of Jesse Marsch as our new head coach, pending international clearance
— Leeds United (@LUFC) February 28, 2022
City Saved by VAR: Everton 0-1 Manchester City
Manchester City extended their lead at the top of the Premier League thanks to a late Phil Foden goal, but Pep Guardiola will be thankful for VAR’s inconsistency.
Everton looked to take what they could out of the game as they continue to fight for survival in the Premier League.
Manchester City were frustrated with Everton’s robust defensive work and were struggling to create any clear cut opportunities throughout the 90 minutes.
When City did look to break through, Jordan Pickford was equal to everything with a fantastic double save coming in the second half.
What looked to end up being a frustrating day for Manchester City, ended up being a lifeline for the league leaders.
A low driven cross from the left-hand side took a small deflection, leaving Michael Keane flat footed and off balance. Keane done his best to adjust but was unable to get his foot behind the ball leaving a simple tap in for Phil Foden in the 82nd minute.
Less than five minutes later, a controversial handball by Rodri was not punished and the away side got a lucky escape. VAR did intervene and decided that the images provided were “inconclusive.”
Should Everton have had a penalty after this potential Rodri handball? 🤔 pic.twitter.com/hqrZjCWrrO
— ESPN UK (@ESPNUK) February 26, 2022
Everton will feel hard done by VAR and will feel like a possible point has been lost.
Pep and co. will have no worries over the decision as they have now extended their lead at the top of the table to 6 points, with Liverpool playing in the Carabao Cup Final on Sunday.
Best of the Rest
Aston Villa secured a 2-0 away win at Brighton thanks to goals from Matty Cash and Ollie Watkins.
Southampton’s fine run of form continued this weekend as they came out 2-0 winners over Norwich on Friday night.
First half goals from Joelinton and Joe Willock guided Newcastle to a 2-0 away victory at Brentford, who are now winless in eight and struggling to score with Ivan Toney on the sidelines.
West Ham took three important points at home with a 1-0 win over top four challengers Wolves.
Burnley picked up another important point in their relegation fight with a 1-1 draw away at Crystal Palace as Manchester United were left frustrated in their 0-0 draw at home to Watford.
Player of the Week – Harry Kane
For the second match week in a row, Harry Kane picks up our player of the week award. A sublime finish and an inch perfect pass to set up Son, lead Spurs to a massive 4-0 win away at Leeds. Kane has picked up form at a perfect point in the season as Antonio Conte looks to get a top four finish for Spurs.