Conte, Tuchel see red as Kane snatches Spurs draw at Chelsea

Published August 15, 2022
<p>Tottenham Hotspur’s Italian head coach Antonio Conte (R) and Chelsea’s German head coach Thomas Tuchel (L) shake hands then clash after the English Premier League football match between Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur at Stamford Bridge in London on August 14. — AFP</p>

Tottenham Hotspur’s Italian head coach Antonio Conte (R) and Chelsea’s German head coach Thomas Tuchel (L) shake hands then clash after the English Premier League football match between Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur at Stamford Bridge in London on August 14. — AFP

<p>LONDON: Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane (C) heads to score the equaliser during the Premier League match against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.—AFP</p>

LONDON: Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane (C) heads to score the equaliser during the Premier League match against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.—AFP

LONDON: Harry Kane snatched a 96th minute equaliser to salvage a 2-2 draw for Tottenham from a feisty London derby against Chelsea on Sunday.

Both managers Antonio Conte and Thomas Tuchel were sent-off after the full-time whistle for their second physical altercation of the match.

Chelsea looked set to get a new era at Stamford Bridge off to the best possible start as they twice led through Kalidou Koulibaly and Reece James.

Tottenham were well off the level required if they are to live up to hopes of challenging Manchester City and Liverpool for the title, but showed the newfound character instilled by Conte to fight back for a point.

The Italian and Tuchel were both booked in the aftermath of Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg’s first equaliser.

Tempers then flared again during a handshake after Kane nodded in with virtually the last action of the game.

Tottenham have still only won once at Stamford Bridge in 32 years in the league, but Conte will be delighted to escape with a share of the spoils against his former club.

New Chelsea chairman Todd Boehly was welcomed by a huge banner from the Chelsea support and saw an early return on the near 170 million ($206 million) investment in the transfer market since he sanctioned a 2.5 billion takeover to buy the club from Roman Abramovich.

Despite the drastic changes in the boardroom, on the field it was like the old times under Abramovich as Chelsea outthought, outplayed and outmuscled Spurs for the first 45 minutes.

Two of Chelsea’s new signings combined for the opening goal as it was from Marc Cucurella’s corner that Koulibaly found space to volley home.

Conte again resisted the temptation to start any of his six new signings, but it was not until the introduction of Richarlison just before the hour mark and a switch of formation that Tottenham began to threaten.

Kane had a glorious chance to level when he uncharacteristically dragged wide with only Edouard Mendy to beat.

Spurs did level 22 minutes from time in controversial fashion to light the spark between the two managers.

BRENTFORD’S Bryan Mbeumo (C) scores past Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea during their match at the Brentford Community Stadium.—AFP
BRENTFORD’S Bryan Mbeumo (C) scores past Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea during their match at the Brentford Community Stadium.—AFP

Kai Havertz looked to be clearly fouled by Rodrigo Bentancur before Tottenham broke forward and the ball eventually fell to Hojbjerg to fire low and hard past Mendy.

Tuchel reacted furiously to the decision and Conte’s overzealous celebration.

The German fought fire with fire as he sprinted down the touchline to celebrate when James thrashed home Raheem Sterling’s pass to restore Chelsea’s lead 13 minutes from time.

However, Kane had the final say as he flicked in Ivan Perisic’s corner deep into added time.

Earlier, Nottingham Forest celebrated their first home game in the Premier League for 23 years by beating West Ham United 1-0.

The two-time European champions have made 14 new signings in a bid to maintain their top-flight status and two of those making their home debuts were the stars as Taiwo Awoniyi scored the only goal and Dean Henderson saved Declan Rice’s penalty.

Forest had fortune on their side as the Hammers also had a first-half goal controversially ruled out and hit the underside of the crossbar twice after the break through Pablo Fornals and Said Benrahma.

But that mattered little to a jubilant 30,000 crowd at the City Ground, who revelled in their first three points back in the big time.

BRENTFORD HUMILIATE UNITED

A shambolic Manchester United side conceded four goals in the opening 35 minutes in a 4-0 drubbing at Brentford on Saturday as their woeful start to the Premier League season continued.

United’s seventh successive away league defeat was assured long before the interval as Brentford took ruthless advantage of a catalogue of errors by the visitors.

The rout began in the 10th minute when United keeper David de Gea allowed a weak shot by Josh Dasilva to slip past him.

Things got worse for United eight minutes later when De Gea played the ball out to former Brentford player Christian Eriksen who was caught in possession and Mathias Jensen slotted home.

When United’s defence failed to deal with a corner and Ben Mee glanced in a close-range header to make it 3-0 the Brentford fans were ecstatic while United’s new manager Erik ten Hag looked ashen-faced in his technical area.

Brentford’s fourth was a gem as Ivan Toney delivered a diagonal ball to Bryan Mbeumo from a counter-attack and Mbeumo calmly beat De Gea.

Ten Hag made three substitutions at halftime with Raphael Varane, Tyrell Malacia and Scott McTominay coming on but despite a slight improvement United offered little fight.

Brentford’s fans serenaded their players with “Hey Jude” at the final whistle while United’s players looked crestfallen as they trudged off rock bottom of the table having also lost their opener at home to Brighton & Hove Albion.

It was the first time since 1960 that United have conceded at least six goals in their first two matches of a top-flight season and the first time they have lost their opening two matches since 1992 when they went on to win the title.

This side, however, looks woefully inadequate to mount any kind of challenge and Ten Hag, who was taunted by the Brentford fans, appears to have a huge job on his hands.

The Dutchman is the first Manchester United manager to lose his first two games in charge since John Chapman in 1921.

“It’s easy to dismantle this United side, just be organised and fight and you’re there,” said former United player and Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville said.

For Brentford, whose starting line-up cost in the region of 55 million compared to the more than 400 million of United’s, have picked up four points in their first two games.

United has Cristiano Ronaldo back in their starting line-up but the Portuguese forward barely got a look in.

The confidence drained out of United from the moment De Gea allowed Dasilva’s shot to end up in the back of the net.

Eriksen, who got a mixed reception from Brentford’s fans, then inadvertently gifted his former club their second as United looked shell shocked by the energy of their hosts who went on to record their biggest top-flight victory since 1938.

Published in Dawn, August 15th, 2022

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