VAR and injuries provided the main talking points at the Vitality Stadium as Bournemouth and Tottenham Hotspur played out a goalless draw. Tottenham were in need of points to keep in touch of the European places whilst Bournemouth were in desperate need of points as they fight relegation.
VAR and Injuries Take Centre Stage As Tottenham Hotspur Struggle
Adam Smith Head Injury
Adam Smith and David Brooks both had to go off with injuries in the second half for Eddie Howe’s men. The injury to Adam Smith was most concerning as he clashed heads with Ben Davies. It was a genuine challenge that floored Smith and Last Word on Football send best wishes for a speedy recovery.
VAR was at the centre of controversy yet again for Spurs when on four minutes, Josh King pushed Harry Kane in the back. The first question was how on-field official Paul Tierney managed to wave the penalty claims away. He was looking right at the incident and it seemed to be a clear penalty. Michael Oliver was the VAR official and backed up his colleague with the no penalty decision. It left Jose Mourinho fuming at yet another poor VAR decision.
VAR needs to change. It is there to make sure decisions are correct. Currently it is simply a tool for one official to protect another. That must stop otherwise the whole system is totally flawed.
In the 90th minute, Callum Wilson thought he had earned Bournemouth a vital three points but a handball by Josh King was picked up and the goal disallowed.
Bournemouth Hanging On
A point after five defeats was better than nothing for Bournemouth. It leaves them three points away from safety with Leicester up next. With Manchester City their next away game, if Bournemouth are going to survive, they are going to have to do it the hard way.
Eddie Howe will have seen some positive signs but the fact his team have scored only 15 goals is a huge reason why they are in trouble.
Tottenham Talent Failing
During the match, Tottenham at different times had Steven Bergwijn, Harry Kane, Erik Lamela, Lucas Moura, Son Heung-Min, and Giovani Lo Celso on the pitch. Between them and the rest of the team, they failed to manage one single shot on target. Not one. That is a statistic that should worry Jose Mourinho. A total lack of creativity, no imagination, laboured performances and toothless in attack.
The only positive for Spurs was a second consecutive clean sheet. There are too many players not showing interest and looking for the season to desperately end. With Arsenal up next at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, Spurs must do more than just improve. There are problems with this squad and unless things change before nest season, Tottenham will continue to travel backwards.