Alan Shearer has told BBC Sport that he believes Jose Mourinho’s decision to bring on Brazilian duo Carlos Vinicius and Lucas Moura provided the difference during Tottenham Hotspur’s late win over West Brom.
Spurs were frustrated for almost the entire 90 minutes by Slaven Bilic’s side, who are yet to win their first league game of the season since gaining promotion from the Championship. The Baggies had plenty of chances, too.
Karlan Grant should have netted a header, while Conor Gallagher’s long-range strike flicked the outside of the post. But it was a Matt Doherty cross that finally found the breakthrough, allowing Harry Kane to head in his 150th Premier League goal.
On 78 minutes, both Moura and Vinicius entered the fray as replacements for Gareth Bale and Moussa Sissoko – and Shearer believes those changes provided the difference for Tottenham, who finally secured three points.
“Credit has to go to Spurs boss Jose Mourinho, though, because of the positive change he made 12 minutes from time, when he took Moussa Sissoko and Bale off and brought on Lucas Moura and Carlos Vinicius,” Shearer said.
“That’s what won them the game in the end. I know Harry secured the three points but it happened because Mourinho was looking to win the game, and it worked.”
TBR’s view – What do Spurs need to do to turn into title challengers?
Tottenham have the players. Gareth Bale has bolstered their attack, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg has provided Spurs with a midfield general and Eric Dier is getting better and better at centre-back. They have the manager, too.
What Spurs need is consistency, and it looks as though they are starting to get that as well. The real test will be when they come up against Liverpool, Manchester City and other top-six teams. Until then, they need to keep the momentum high.