Haringey Community Press

Haringey Community Press

Match report: NS Mura 2 Tottenham Hotspur 1

Tottenham Hotspur succumb to defeat against NS Mura at The Stadion Ljudski vrt.

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The Stadion Ljudski vrt (credit Alen Istokovic/Wikimedia Commons)
By Haran Naresh 25 November 2021

Tottenham Hotspur’s chances of qualifying for the Europa Conference League last 16 hang by a thread as they were defeated by NS Mura.

The Slovenian outfit took an early lead through Tomi Horvat before the visitors were reduced to 10 men when Ryan Sessegnon was sent off for a second bookable offence.

Spurs equalised in the second half through Harry Kane but conceded the winner at the death, with Amadej Marosa securing a famous victory for the lowest-ranked side in the competition.

With nine minutes gone Tomi Horvat hit a volley that sailed over the bar.

NS Mura took the lead in the 11th minute. Horvat received the ball in the right channel and cut inside past Davinson Sanchez and curled a shot into the corner.

Spurs wasted an excellent chance to equalise shortly afterwards when Tanguy Ndombele played a pass over the top for Bryan Gil but the winger blazed well off target.

Spurs struggled to string attacks together and regularly played errant passes in the final third which killed their momentum.

In the 26th minute Ryan Sessegnon hit a scuffed effort which was easily saved.

The visitors were reduced to 10 men on the half hour mark. Sessegnon received a second yellow card after he lunged in on Horvat and missed the ball.  

Harry Kane put in a cross from the right flank which forced NS Mura goalkeeper Matko Obradovic to push the ball away.

With 37 minutes on the clock, Oliver Skipp played the ball into Kane and he turned before steering his shot narrowly off target.

Some wonderful interplay from NS Mura ended with Nik Lorbek firing just wide from the edge of the penalty area.

Detecting that his side badly needed a spark, Tottenham manager Antonio Conte made four changes in the 53rd minute.

One of these substitutes was Heung-min Son and in the 57th minute he went on a strong run before releasing a shot that Obradovic tipped over the bar.

From the resulting corner, Kane found space for a free header but he could only direct his effort straight at Obradovic.

Tottenham’s substitutes had an immediate impact and pushed the home team onto the back foot.

Tottenham equalised with 72 minutes on the clock. Lucas Moura played in Kane and he waited for Obradovic to come off his line before playing a delightful chip over the goalkeeper and into the net.

Son attempted a shot which hit Ndombele in the box and went wide.

Despite having had a man advantage for most of the game, NS Mura appeared to be tiring.

Kane cut inside before having his shot deflected behind off Marin Karamarko.

In the 89th minute Moura received the ball in space and took a couple of touches before firing over.

Son sent in a free-kick in the closing minutes which was headed behind by Japhet Tanganga.

NS Mura scored the winner with just seconds remaining. Ben Davies slipped and the ball was played into Amadej Marosa, who cut inside past Sanchez and hit a shot that took a deflection off the defender and went into the net.

Spurs delivered a lacklustre performance that has left them in a precarious position ahead of their final Europa Conference League group fixture.

They are in second place in Group G on seven points and a victory over Rennes at The Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on 9th December will guarantee qualification to the preliminary knockout round.

However, if they fail to pick up three points and Vitesse beat NS Mura then Spurs will be eliminated from the competition.

Spurs return to Premier League action when they visit Burnley on Sunday.

Tottenham Hotspur manager Antonio Conte speaking in his post-match press conference: “I did not like what happened tonight, the performance. I must be honest and tell you that after three and a half weeks, I am starting to understand the situation. It is not simple because in this moment for sure the level of Tottenham is not so high.”

“There is an important gap to the top teams in England. Of this we must not be scared. I am here to work, here to improve the situation. I know we have to work hard but we have also to improve the quality of the situation, if we want to be competitive.”