Robbie Keane spurs wrong chant for Sunderland supporters
07 March 2009 06:36
Those who travelled up to Wearside were left joyously celebrating Robbie Keane's goal-scoring prowess and his fist-clenched salute following the final whistle at a ground where compatriot Roy Keane used to be hero-worshipped with that ditty at a place where photos of their former manager have been removed from the walls.
His namesake salvaged a point for Tottenham with an 89th minute that showed why Tottenham were so keen 'pardon the pun' to bring him back from Liverpool and why manager Harry Redknapp installed him as captain on the prodigal son's return. The Irishman came to Tottenham's rescue just moments after Dowd had ignored appeals for a Sunderland penalty following King's ungainly challenge on Jones as defence was seamlessly turned into attack following a corner for the home side.
Keane expertly finished off a counter-attack by timing his run into the area to perfection and smacking a first-time shot beyond Marton Fulop following Darren Bent's cross.
"I couldn't have wished it to have fallen to a better person than Robbie because he's a good finisher and he's earned us a vital point that kept our excellent run going," Redknapp said.
"I ended up with three at back and even forwards. There was always a chance they would break away and score but we had to go for it. They could have picked us off but I had to take that chance."
Redknapp added: "I couldn't be angry with way we played we dominated game from the third minute. We had all the possession but couldn't open the door. I was frustrated we couldn't get the goal our play deserved
"We had good chances and got into great positions couldn't finish off.Â We were camped in their half but in the end we finally got what we deserved. We'd dominated the game and so I was starting to worry because there were only two minutes left when Robbie popped up."
Earlier, just over two minutes had elapsed when the Tottenham defence was caught off guard and Kieran Richardson stylishly took maximum advantage of fortuitous circumstances.
An excellent first touch saw him burst past a wrong-footed Jonathan Woodgate when the ball looped over the defender when Steed Malbranque's pass to Djibril Cisse ricocheted off Ledley King and Richardson guided a right-footed shot past Heurelho Gomes.
It was a turn of pace, purpose and assured finished that secured Richardson England recognition during his Manchester United days and was reward for what he called a â€˜Rocky-style' training regime last summer.
However, Richardson went from hero to zero in manager Ricky Sbragia's eyes as his tenth caution this term will trigger a two-match ban.
"Kieran was running round like a chicken with no head trying to get himself booked," Sbragia said. "He became undisciplined and sometimes we think we are bigger than the game. He was on nine booking and we're going to lose him for a month they way things are going. He continues to get involved with the referee and continues to make harsh tackles. That didn't please me."
Sbragia, who admitting taking off Djibril Cisse because he "couldn't retain the ball" also had harsh words for left-back George McCartney.
"In the end we blew it," Sbragia added. "We got carried away and started losing our discipline. We should have taken a short corner to see out a bit of time but my left-back is in the box and I don't understand why but his job is to defend and let the others get into to box. I can't understand it.
"Tottenham threw caution to the wind and changed their system. We rode our luck and kept them at bay but for some reason shot ourselves in the foot for the third or fourth time at corners this season.
"It's the same story. We've got to learn. I don't b*****k them, I just state the facts. We were f*****g s**t." We should have seen it out."