Two late goals from Richarlison helped Tottenham shrug off the Marseille challenge in their first Champions League group stage game on Wednesday.

Marseille looked to be on course towards sharing the spoils with Tottenham Hotspur, but Richarlison was not ready to leave to rue in his first UEFA Champions League start.

The visitors were definitely the better team in the first half as they did all the running and pushed Spurs to the brink of an uncharacteristic defeat. But the home side held the fort as their backline stood still in front of a disciplined Marseille side.

Just after the break, Marseille endured a severe blow as Chancel Mbemba was brandished the marching order for tripping Son Heung-min outside the penalty area, and they had a tough task to cut out for the remaining half.

Spurs lacked the cutting edge, but it was their number nine who brought a pale of joy to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Ivan Perisic cut the ball back in and sent a lovely cross to the box. An unmarked Richarlison jumped the highest and sent the ball past a hapless Pau Lopez.

Richarlison clinched the game with another header as he met Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg’s pinpoint cross to seal a much needed victory. Tottenham were not clinical but still managed a scrappy win which has been the case this season, and it might be the indication that they are in for something very precious this season. The Hard Tackle runs the rule over Antonio Conte’s men.

Hugo Lloris: 6/10

Lloris did not have to labour much throughout the game. He showed his shot-stopping skills to deny Matteo Guendouzi’s effort in the penultimate moment of the first half.

Cristian Romero: 5.5/10

Romero looked like a pale shadow of his past, and if it was not for Emerson Royal to help him when he lost the battle against Nuno Tavares, it would have been a disaster for the Argentine international.

Eric Dier: 6.5/10

Unarguably the best Tottenham central defender among the three. Dier marshalled the backline quite well and did not concede a chance to the Marseille attackers. His passing needs to be sharper in the coming games.

Clement Lenglet: 6/10

Lenglet did his duties with utmost sincerity and did not get engaged in an unnecessary brawl. The Barcelona loanee seems to be the preferred option on the left side of the defence, and Conte subbed him off in a bid to keep him fresh for Saturday’s much anticipated clash with Manchester City.

Emerson Royal: 7/10

Emerson remained defensively astute throughout the game and even won his duel with Nuno Tavares. But the full-back did very little to help his attacking colleagues as he had almost nothing to offer in the final third.

Ivan Perisic: 7/10

Perisic provided the first joyous moment as his right-footed cross was successfully converted by Richarlison. His dangerous deliveries should be a source of many goals in this ongoing season.

Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg: 7/10

The Danish midfielder has been ever present in the Tottenham midfield and did all the dirty work against Marseille. His drive from the midfield helped Spurs in crucial times, and he also provided a pinpoint delivery for Richarlison’s second goal.

Rodrigo Bentancur: 8/10

On a more gloomy night, he was perhaps one of the shining lights for the home side. Bentancur consistently tried to grind in something and covered almost every inch on the pitch.

Richarlison: 9/10

Definitely the man of the match for his two well-timed goals. Richarlison will take some load of Harry Kane, and the Brazilian seems to be enjoying his life in North London. He scored two important headers to keep the ball ticking in Spurs’ favour.

Son Heung-min: 5/10

Except for being involved in the event that led to Chancel Mbemba’s dismissal, Son was way off colour. Antonio Conte might have to start thinking about dropping him from the side as he barely had a sight of the goal.

Harry Kane: 5.5/10

A very rare poor outing for star striker. Kane looked clueless, and although he did try his best, he never was going to score with this instinct.


Dejan Kulusevski: 7.5/10

Kulusevski produced a very impactful cameo as he injected pace into the game and troubled the defenders with his deadly crosses.

Ben Davies: 6/10

Davies made a brilliant block in the dying minutes to keep the clean sheet intact.

Japhet Tanganga: 6/10

The defender was calm and composed on the ball.

Yves Bissouma: N/A

Did not play enough to warrant a rating.

Matt Doherty: N/A

Did not play enough to warrant a rating.

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