Tottenham 'as good as any team we’ve played' says Crystal Palace boss Alan Pardew

Crystal Palace 1 Tottenham 3
Alan Pardew believes Spurs are as good as any Premier League team when they are in possession.

Another away win kept Mauricio Pochettino’s side in touch at the top of the table despite falling behind to Jan Vertonghen’s first-half own goal.

They recovered through Dele Alli volleying potentially the goal of the season after Harry Kane’s header had made the score 1-1, before substitute Nacer Chadli curled in their third in stoppage time.

A trademark of Pochettino’s teams is their intense pressing without the ball, but Pardew felt it was in possession Spurs most impressed him, while displaying some weaknesses out of it.

“They have a lot of attributes,” the Palace manager said. “The two centre-halves (Toby Alderweireld and Vertonghen) being so natural on the ball. 

“I watched them at Ajax many years ago, it feels like 20 years ago but I was probably only about six.

“They rotate the ball well, and in possession they’re as good as any team we’ve played. 

“Out of possession, maybe that’s where they just need to tighten up a bit.”

After his recent inconsistent form, Palace goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey impressed and was overshadowed only by Tottenham’s Hugo Lloris producing a collection of world-class saves, but his manager praised both and expressed his satisfaction at Hennessey’s performance.

Pochettino hailed Dele Alli’s “amazing” goal after the world-class finish further demonstrated his outstanding potential and importance to this promising Spurs side.

“He showed tremendous quality, it will be shown around the world on every TV,” he said. “I think Dele shows his quality in every game. 

“He’s capable of that. He has fantastic potential, (he’s) difficult to price like Harry Kane.

“They have big potential because they are very young. “

There was one concern for Spurs as Vertonghen was substituted with ankle and knee problems.

“We need to assess him,” Pochettino said.

“It’s dIfficult to explain. I prefer to wait. It was difficult from my position to see (his condition).”

Vertonghen was replaced shortly after his leg seemed to buckle under him following an elbow from Palace’s Connor Wickham, but Pardew claimed he had not seen the incident before criticising Alli’s conduct and also praising the 19-year-old’s goal.

“I haven’t heard anything from my analysts about that (challenge),” he said. “I certainly do know that I was in front when Yohan Cabaye got stamped on by Dele, so you know... These things happen, I’m not into retribution. 

“It’s just honest challenges I think and we move to the next game.

“It’s something that he (Alli) needs to cut out of his game, I don’t know why he did it. It was something he shouldn’t have done. He is a great player though. I’m not going to moan about spilt milk.

“It was a great goal. Spurs have that individual talent to produce a goal out of nothing. It’s something we’re lacking at the moment.

CRYSTAL PALACE: Hennessey, Ward, Dann, Delaney, Souare, McArthur (Jedinak 79), Ledley, Puncheon, Cabaye (Campbell 86), Zaha, Wickham.

Subs not used: Speroni, Lee, Mutch, Chamakh, Kelly.

TOTTENHAM: Lloris, Trippier, Alderweireld, Vertonghen (Wimmer 75), Rose, Dier (Chadli 56), Dembele, Son, Alli, Eriksen (Bentaleb 89), Kane.

Subs not used: Lamela, Vorm, Carroll, Davies.

Referee: Martin Atkinson


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