EPL

Tottenham 0-2 Aston Villa: Buendia and Douglas Luiz on target as Spurs begin 2023 with defeat

By Sports Desk January 01, 2023

Emiliano Buendia and Douglas Luiz condemned Tottenham to a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Aston Villa in their opening match of 2023.

Antonio Conte's side missed the chance to return to the top four as their opponents ended a run of five successive Premier League defeats in London.

Villa, who also claimed a first clean sheet in the English capital in 14 attempts, struck twice after the break at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium with neat finishes from Buendia and Douglas Luiz.

Tottenham remain fifth in the table after suffering only a second loss from their last nine matches played on New Year’s Day.

The visitors enjoyed most of the possession during the early stages of the first half.

A swift counter culminated in Ollie Watkins drilling a low 20-yard effort narrowly wide of the near post, while an important Boubacar Kamara block denied Matt Doherty at the other end after the Tottenham full-back’s strong run into the box.

Villa then had Ashley Young to thank five minutes before the break, the full-back showing brilliant reflexes to clear Harry Kane’s goalbound header off the line.

But the visitors snatched the lead within five minutes of the restart. Watkins reacted quickly after Hugo Lloris spilled Douglas Luiz's fierce long-range effort, the England striker teeing up Buendia to slot home.

The roles almost reversed in the 62nd minute when Buendia's neat through-ball found Watkins, who was blocked by the recovering Doherty.

Villa did grab the second goal to seal the points 17 minutes from time, Douglas Luiz latching onto John McGinn's precise pass before neatly beating Lloris from close range.

Related items

  • Euro 2024 social round-up: Scotland take in the views, Pepe hits top speed Euro 2024 social round-up: Scotland take in the views, Pepe hits top speed

    Saturday's Euro 2024 action was headlined by some of the game's biggest stars, with Cristiano Ronaldo and Kevin De Bruyne grabbing the attention.

    Ronaldo recorded his record-breaking seventh Euros assist – and was inundated with requests for photos from pitch invaders – as Portugal clinched top spot in Group F with a 3-0 win over Turkiye.

    De Bruyne then joined Youri Tielemans on the scoresheet as Belgium beat Romania 2-0, teeing up a tense finale in Group E.

    Georgia and Czechia, meanwhile, played out an entertaining 1-1 draw in Hamburg, leaving both teams needing a victory on the final matchday to have any chance of advancing.

    But what else was going on around Euro 2024? Here, we run through the best social media posts of the day.

    Eze and Konsa pool together

    England's social media accounts have been a trove of entertaining content throughout this tournament, and on Saturday's edition of their Lions' Den livestream, Eberechi Eze and Ezri Konsa took centre-stage.

    Eze and Konsa took on the 'what a clearance' challenge, looking to clear a pool table as quickly as possible as a pairing.

    A respectable score put them third on the leaderboard, but they were unable to match the top two pairings – Declan Rice and Ivan Toney, and Jarrod Bowen and Marc Guehi.

    Kante shows off

    France's goalless draw with the Netherlands on Friday may not have been a game for the neutrals, but we were at least treated to another tireless display from N'Golo Kane.

    Even at the age of 33 and after a season in the Saudi Pro League, Kante remains one of the game's top box-to-box midfielders, covering every blade of grass against the Oranje.

    On Saturday, France's official X account proved once and for all that a year out of the European game has not affected Kante's physique… 

    It's fair to say he remains in tip-top condition.

    Cologne turns yellow for Romania

    A sizeable contingent of Romanian fans made their opening game at Euro 2024 a real spectacle, forming a wall of yellow in Munich as they crushed Ukraine 3-0.

    On Saturday, they headed to Cologne for their second match against Belgium, which ended in defeat despite a spirited performance.

    The highlight of the day for many supporters will surely have been the pre-match scenes, as they turned the historic city centre yellow.

    Ronaldo's pride as Portugal progress

    Portugal's game against Turkiye was interrupted on several occasions as pitch invaders attempted to grab a photograph with one of the world's most famous players.

    Ronaldo had already made his mark on the pitch with an assist for former Manchester United team-mate Bruno Fernandes, as the Selecao demonstrated their credentials with a 3-0 victory.

    After the game, he took to social media to share a few snaps of his own, as well as some words of congratulations for his Portugal team-mates.

    Scotland savour the view

    Scotland's Euro 2024 adventure could come to an end on Sunday, with Steve Clarke's men requiring a victory over Hungary to have a chance of reaching the last 16.

    If they are sent packing after this weekend, they will definitely miss the scenic views at their Garmisch-Partenkirchen base camp.

    They will be hoping Saturday's training session was not their last set to this jaw-dropping mountain vista. 

    Like a fine wine

    Portugal's victory over Turkiye featured another composed performance from 41-year-old centre-back Pepe.

    The former Real Madrid man displayed his excellent reading of the game to cut out one menacing counterattack from Turkiye with the score at 1-0 and was generally excellent throughout.

    Pepe may be no slouch, but we're pretty sure UEFA have done him a favour with this picture… 

  • Page sacked as Wales manager Page sacked as Wales manager

    Wales have sacked manager Rob Page following the country's failure to qualify for Euro 2024.

    The 49-year-old was initially given the job on an interim basis in November 2020, taking over from Ryan Giggs, before being appointed permanently in September 2022.

    Page took charge of 45 games for the national team, winning 15 of those matches.

    He oversaw the team at two major tournaments, reaching the round of 16 at Euro 2020, and led Wales to the World Cup for the first time in 64 years, though they exited in the group stage after earning only one point.

    Wales were agonisingly short of qualifying for a third consecutive European Championships, losing on penalties to Poland in their play-off final in March.

    Despite being backed by the Football Association of Wales (FAW) following that result, Page then came under heavy criticism following a goalless draw with minnows Gibraltar and a 4-0 thrashing by Slovakia in their June friendlies, leading to his contract being terminated.

  • Romeu named new head coach of Barcelona Femeni Romeu named new head coach of Barcelona Femeni

    Barcelona have announced Pere Romeu as their new head coach following Jonatan Giraldez's departure.

    Romeu, who was an assistant coach at the club in the last three seasons, has signed a two-year contract until 2026.

    The 30-year-old takes over following a successful season for Barcelona in which they won the quadruple, lifting the Champions League, Liga F, Copa de la Reina and the Supercopa de Espana Femenia.

    Giraldez had confirmed in December 2023 that he would be leaving the club at the end of the campaign, and it was announced in January he would be joining NWSL club Washington Spirit.

    "I have been with the team for three seasons, and I know their day-to-day life. I'm 100 per cent ready," Romeu said in his first interview as head coach.

    Romeu coached in Barcelona men's youth set-up between 2017 and 2020 before joining Romanian side Viitorul Constanta as an assistant coach before making the move back to Catalonia to join Barcelona Femeni in 2021.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.