No goal rating terror? Son Heung-min was the altruistic play-by-play king against Nottingham

Tottenham won 2-0 away to Nottingham Forest in round 17 of the 2023-24 English Premier League at City Ground in Nottingham, England, on the morning of the 16th (Korea time). It is the second consecutive win following the previous match against Newcastle United.

Tottenham, which recorded 33 points, tied with Manchester City (33 points), which had no match, continuously ranked fifth. The team is four points shorter than Liverpool (37 points), which is ranking first, so it has maintained its strength to continue the Big Four competition. The team is six points shorter than Manchester United (27 points), which is ranking sixth. 슬롯머신

Son Heung-min returned to the field as the left flanker who enjoyed a lot in the match against Newcastle. As Hisharlisong was deployed as the front-line striker, he assisted Brennan Johnson and Dejan Klusevski at the second line. He focused on breaking Nottingham’s Flat 3 (three-back) defense consisting of Willie Boli, Murillo and Moussa Niaquite. When the two wingbacks, Nico Williams and Harry Topolo, were demoted to the defense, Son was absolutely capable of breaking down the Flat 5 defense.

Manager Enze Postecoglou deployed Son as a left-sided striker in the match against Newcastle to help ease the imbalance in attack. Son faced off against Newcastle right-sided defender Kieran Trippier, who he once played with for Tottenham, and made two breakthroughs, helping Destiny Udogi and Hisharlisson to score goals.

Ahead of the match against Nottingham, Son said, “Don’t get drunk on victory. The duration of the match is short. Don’t be a team that easily collapses and gives up.” Postecoglou also said, “He is already a world-class player,” helping him lead the season by taking over the captaincy role.

In the match against Nottingham, Son Heung-min frequently beckoned his teammates and asked them to move boldly. Although it was an away match, he knew better than anyone that it would not be helpful to compete hard for the championship if he failed to beat Nottingham, so he tried to create opportunities by running more and moving more organically.

Son Heung-min, who received Klusevski’s penetration pass three minutes into the first half, attempted a right-footed shot, but was blocked by the goalkeeper. Nottingham, which was trying to prevent Son Heung-min’s breakthrough, formed a wall with three people sticking together. Sometimes they fought and fouled before the bold breakthrough came out.

In the 21st minute, he wasted no time in connecting to Hisarlisong with a fast pass. Son Heung-min quickly took the ballless movement, so-called “off the ball,” and focused on creating chances, with his surprised defense belatedly following suit.

A difficult situation continued for Son Heung-min. In the 28th minute, Johnson suffered a head injury and was replaced by central midfielder Oliver Skipp. It was a situation where we had to increase our offense a little more. It was useless unless it was an accurate goal. In the extra time, Hisharlisong scored a goal for two consecutive games. At the same time as the goalkeeper’s positioning was late, Hisharlisong’s header with a high RBI worked.

In the second half, Tottenham faced more difficulties. Elanga scored a goal in the 13th minute, but video review (VAR) confirmed that Elanga was a little ahead. Tottenham, which accelerated its scoring, saw Son shoot in the 19th minute, but was also saved. Still, Klusevski shook the net with a bold breakthrough in the 20th minute. At the moment, Son relieved Klusevski of the burden by putting pressure on his defense.

He ran away by two goals, but in the 24th minute, central midfielder Yves Bissouma hit Yates in the knee while competing for the ball. It was a dangerous foul and was warned, but it was corrected by a VAR send-off. The weakening of the attack was obvious, and Tottenham replaced Hissarlison and Pierre-Emile Hoivier to fill the void in the midfield.

Son Heung-min moved to the center and spent the rest of his time. If he owned the ball, he connected to his colleague, but it was only through a counterattack. It was a result of numerical inferiority. Son Heung-min broke through between four defenders in the 35th minute, but was blocked inside the penalty area. Nottingham continued to follow, so it was a burdensome situation for Son Heung-min. Later, he stepped down to the bench in the 44th minute when he had stability.

Both Son Heung-min and Tottenham were able to catch their breath while maintaining the victory. However, various British media criticized Son even when he was outnumbered. Football London, a football media outlet based in London, gave Son a rating of 6 points. Some critics say that he failed to properly touch the ball from the left side.

The Evening Standard, a free London-based magazine, also gave six points. The score was the lowest after Bisuma (five points), who caused damage to his team by sending off. Another explanation was that his shot was blocked by the goalkeeper’s defense.

However, Son’s record shows that he sacrificed himself to focus only on his team’s victory. According to the record of SPOPICK, a comprehensive prediction and analysis application, using Opta, a statistical company, Son was more likely to come down below the center line and receive the ball after Bissouma’s exit.

Compared to the match against Newcastle, where they played in the same position, they were more likely to stay in the front area. That’s true just in the same time. The match against Newcastle had many attempts to approach the penalty area to continue its attack even with a 3-0 lead until the 24th minute of the second half, and in the process, they made their own penalty kicks.

In the match against Nottingham, however, Son’s position was further pushed to the back as the ball failed to easily touch the front after the non-horse field left in the 24th minute of the second half. This means that Son made moves and blushes to protect his team in a numerical inferiority.

How much his colleagues relied on Son Heung-min is also shown on the passmap. A few passes from the front were touched or exchanged by Son Heung-min. Although he could not reach Johnson, who was far away, he was almost connected to the rest.

In particular, the passes exchanged between best friend Ben Davis and Son Heung-min are impressive. Of a total of 25 passes, 18 went to Davis to Son Heung-min. On the contrary, it was 7 times. Left-hander Udogi also exchanged passes in 12 times, and Udogi sprayed in the 10th. This is where you can see how much he trusted Son Heung-min and connected with him from the back.

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