Diop and Balbuena re-united, First team to win at New Spurs Stadium & More- Talking Points from Tottenham v West Ham

West Ham became the first visiting team to win at the new Spurs stadium as they secured their first away league triumph of 2019 on Saturday afternoon. Michail Antonio’s fine finish midway through the second half gave the Hammers all three points against Mauricio Pochettino’s men.

Here are our talking points from the game.

Balbuena and Diop re-united: After a long time, Fabian Balbuena and Issa Diop together played as a central defensive pair. The pairing between the Paraguayan and the young French star has been one of the bright points of West Ham’s season, and they were fantastic today as the Hammers secured a rare clean sheet. Balbuena denied Vincent Janssen a late equaliser with his clearance off the line, while Diop almost scored a great individual goal, striding from his own half into the opposition box, but was denied by Lloris.

Angelo Ogbonna has his moments, but tends to be inconsistent. Balbuena and Diop are clearly the way forward.

First away team to win at the New Spurs stadium: West Ham became the first away team to win at the new Spurs stadium, and Antonio’s goal was the first the Lilywhites have conceded at this ground. Nice little pub trivia stat in favour of the Hammers, who were also the first team to win against Arsenal at the Emirates.

All the more remarkable given that the Hammers had taken just one point from 8 league games on the road prior to this clash.

A fantastic assist from Marko Arnautovic for Antonio’s goal: Arnautovic will himself be the first to acknowledge that he hasn’t been at his best since the whole China transfer saga in the winter window. He however remains a quality player, and produced a fantastic assist for Antonio’s goal today. The weight on it was perfect enough to evade Alderweireld’s head, and Antonio applied the icing on the cake with a fine finish.

Masuaku vs Son- penalty or not: Spurs weren’t really at the races today. They however had a call for a penalty in the second half when Son went down in the box. Did the Korean go down softly? We thought so, and Anthony Taylor chose not to award them a penalty. Some would argue that it was a penalty, but had it been awarded, it would’ve been a real blow to the visitors.

A good game for Ryan Fredericks: Fredericks has had his issues- key among them mastering the offside trap, but possesses fantastic pace (a la Kyle Walker) and had a very decent game today. Spurs had Juan Foyth playing at RB today and he did a decent job defensively, but offered little going front in comparison to both Fredericks and Kieran Trippier, bar that one late run for the Janssen chance.

Just reward for West Ham after a good few weeks of footy: VAR denied them against both Manchester United and Leicester, but West Ham finally got the reward they deserved for some fantastic recent performances. Spurs don’t get beaten easily at home and the Hammers’ record on the road has been nothing short of dreadful this season. Manuel Pellegrini’s men defied all the pre-match predictions and even kept a clean sheet against Pochettino’s European semifinalists.

WHUFC starting lineup vs Spurs 2019

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