Tottenham DUMPED out! Richarlison goes missing as Sheffield United stun Spurs to reach FA Cup quarter-finals
- Spurs frustrated by resolute United
- Richarlison in particular wasteful
- Moment of magic from Ndiaye the difference
TELL ME MORE: Sheffield United secured passage to their third FA Cup quarter-final in the last four years and looked at home in the competition from the off. Tottenham's efforts in the first half were epitomised by Lucas Moura successfully finding row Z - much to the delight of the Bramall Lane faithful - while Richarlison also blazed a golden opportunity over the bar. The Blades should have gone in front just before the break when Ismaila Cheick Coulibaly panicked after being afforded a clear run through on goal, firing well wide from Pierre-Emile Hjojberg's mistimed backwards header.
The home side were perhaps lucky not to go down to ten when George Baldock escaped punishment for a high challenge on Ivan Perisic, but the gritty nature of the match suited Paul Heckingbottom's side to a tee, who was watching on from afar having picked up a suspension himself. In the end, it took a moment of magic from substitute Iliman Ndiaye to win it, who danced through a number of Spurs defenders before beating Fraser Forster at his near post. Harry Kane - a 65th minute substitute - then wasted a free header in the dying embers, sealing his side's fourth elimination from the fifth round in as many years.
THE MVP: There were several standout performances for Sheffield United on the night, including from Tommy Doyle and Ben Osborn, but how about that winner from substitute Ndiaye?! Barely five minutes after being brought on for the injured Andre Brooks, the Blades midfielder had the confidence to take on one, two, three Spurs defenders in a majestic slalom before coolly slotting past Fraser Forster. Yes, the Spurs keeper may have helped him out with some questionable positioning, but Ndiaye deserved it for the sheer enterprise and ingenuity in the build-up.
THE BIG LOSER: Antonio Conte and Christian Stellini will have raised a few eyebrows for benching Kane for an FA Cup fifth round tie, but the decision gave Richarlison the opportunity to shine as Spurs' focal point in attack. However, the Brazilian looked a shadow of his World Cup self and crashed his best chance well over the bar when one-on-one. It was perhaps fitting, then, that five minutes before being inevitably substituted for Kane, Richarlison slashed a wild effort that nearly went out for a throw-in. Cue ironic whistles from the crowd, in what was a forgettable night for the Brazilian.
MATCH IN THREE PHOTOS:
WHAT NEXT? The defeat means Spurs end their run of two consecutive 2-0 victories, and will look to bounce back when they travel to Wolves in the league on Saturday.
MATCH RATING (OUT OF FIVE): ⭐⭐⭐