This just in . . . methinks Mr. Curry isn't very happy . . .
Tuesday, August 21, 2001
Doherty and Poyet see red as Spurs hold out
By Steve Curry
Everton 1 - 1 Tottenham Hotspur
Footballers and their managers should, on occasion, be forgiven for losing their composure. Having David Elleray officiate your match might be one of them.
Glenn Hoddle and Walter Smith watch as David Elleray gets his cards out
The notorious Harrow housemaster ruined this match as a spectacle, demonstrating that the performance of referees can be as critical as that of the players in putting on public entertainment.
Tottenham lost Gary Doherty and Gustavo Poyet to questionable red-card decisions and their manager Glenn Hoddle was relieved that his nine men withstood Everton in the last 25 minutes.
Ironically, the worst tackle of the game - a challenge by Mauricio Taricco that put Thomas Gravesen out of the game - went unpunished but will doubtless earn him a fine from his club and a firm rebuke from Hoddle.
On top of that there was an Everton goal that Elleray disallowed for an infringement only he saw and Darren Anderton's strike that was deemed legal despite a Spurs player, Steffen Iversen, being clearly offside.
A crowd of 29,503 went home frustrated when there were enough good players on the pitch to have made this a match to remember for the right reasons.
Everton, after battling relegation for five of the last nine seasons, have started this campaign brightly and another three points on Merseyside should have followed Saturday's victory at Charlton.
With Danish midfielder Gravesen and his Uruguayan counterpart Poyet illuminating Goodison with their skills, there was some bright and bristling football in the opening phase, during which Alan Stubbs struck the woodwork.
Tottenham's two young central defenders - Ledley King in particular - had an exceptional night in negating the aerial advantage of Everton's 6ft 8in centre forward Duncan Ferguson.
But Spurs took the lead against the run of play with a goal that reminded everyone of the talent Anderton has denied the game through his prolonged absences.
Old Sicknote embarked on a dazzling run through the middle, exchanging passes with Teddy Sheringham, and though Iversen appeared to be offside when the ball was directed to him, it came back for Anderton to give Spurs an unlikely lead.
In the meantime, Gravesen had hobbled from the action, the victim of a dreadful two-footed challenge from Taricco that would have produced a red card had either Elleray or one of his assistants seen it.
But the real explosion was to come during a period of madness midway through the second half.
Kevin Campbell and Gary Doherty had been engaged in honest man-to-man combat for much of the game and when they fought for possession on the run again, Doherty was judged to have pulled Campbell back.
Everton got the penalty and Doherty the red card, which even Goodison manager Walter Smith thought was not a case of the punishment fitting the crime. In any event, Ferguson sent Neil Sullivan the wrong way.
Spurs then had Poyet dismissed within five minutes for a foul on Steve Watson that was clearly nothing more than a yellow-card offence.
Since players are now judged by video, let the powers that be examine this tape and give the housemaster six of the best.