NK Maribor 1-1 Tottenham
Tottenham remain in danger of failing to reach the last 32 of the Europa League after being held to an uninspiring draw in Slovenia.
Spurs' third straight draw in the competition leaves Andre Villas-Boas's side third in Group J, behind Lazio and their unheralded opponents NK Maribor.
The Slovenians went ahead against the run of play three minutes before half-time when Robert Beric poked home.
Gylfi Sigurdsson equalised close to the hour but Spurs could not find a winner.
This was a lacklustre display from Tottenham who produced a performance that epitomised their faltering progress in this competition: style but no substance, panache but no penetration.
Villas-Boas has made no secret of his desire to win the Europa League and yet with Spurs still to win a match it appears his players do not share their manager's passion. With two home games to come there is time to turn the tide but performances must improve.
So far, Spurs have simply failed to find their rhythm. At the Stadion Ljudski, Villas-Boas's side were again strangely subdued; despite toying with their opponents for much of the 90 minutes, they never looked like delivering a decisive blow.
The first 40 minutes were a case in point. Jan Vertonghen had a header saved, Sandro fizzed a fierce shot narrowly wide from 25 yards and Jermain Defoe fired over as Spurs probed. But for all their possession, they lacked cohesion, confidence and sustained threat.
The Slovenians, beaten home and away by Birmingham last season, chased shadows and yet somehow found themselves a goal up at the interval.
There was an air of complacency about the way Andros Townsend lost possession in his own half, allowing Ales Mejac to set off on a run that took him all too easily beyond both Kyle Walker and Tom Huddlestone and into the Spurs area. A neat flick across goal followed and Beric tucked the ball away from two yards.
From nowhere, Maribor had something to cling to. Hope surged through the stadium as Marcos Tavares and Goran Cvijanovic tested Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris in the opening moments of the second half. But just as optimism was building, Spurs struck back.
Townsend had made way for Iago Falque at half-time and the substitute made an immediate impact, combining with Sandro before his shot-cum-cross was pushed away by goalkeeper Jasmin Handanovic. Defoe thumped the loose ball goalwards only to see it blocked by Mejac but Sigurdsson bundled the rebound in from a yard.
The goal restored belief to the Tottenham side, but Maribor were in no mood to give in as the game came to life.
Kyle Naughton might have won a penalty with 20 minutes remaining when he fell under a challenge from Milec but the referee chose to book the Tottenham full-back for what he saw as a dive.
Maribor continued to surge forward when the opportunity presented itself. Aleksander Rajcevic burst down the right and found Mejac, who sent a fine low cross towards the penalty spot where Beric failed to make good contact with the goal apparently at his mercy.
Vertonghen thumped a 30-yard shot inches wide as time ticked away but in truth a Spurs' winner would have been unfair on a valiant Maribor side.
- 33 J Handanovic
- 26 Rajcevic
- 44 Arghus
- 06 Milec
- 07 Mejac
- 08 Mezga Booked (Filipovic - 73' )
- 20 Cvijanovic
- 70 Mertelj
- 09 Tavares (Komazec - 90' )
- 10 Ibraimi
- 32 Beric
- 12 Pridigar
- 05 Filipovic
- 28 Viler
- 29 Dodlek
- 31 Lesjak
- 21 Komazec
- 27 Ploj
- 25 Lloris
- 05 Vertonghen
- 16 Naughton Booked
- 28 Walker
- 33 Caulker
- 06 Huddlestone
- 07 Lennon
- 22 Sigurdsson (Dempsey - 75' )
- 30 Sandro (Livermore - 84' )
- 31 Townsend (Falque - 46' )
- 18 Defoe
- 23 Cudicini
- 13 Gallas
- 39 Smith
- 02 Dempsey
- 27 Falque
- 29 Livermore
- 58 Parrett
Live Text Commentary
Substitution Marcos Tavares leaves the field to be replaced by Nikola Komazec.88:50
Shot by Yago Falque from just outside the area goes over the net.87:32
Jan Vertonghen takes a shot from long distance which goes wide of the right-hand post.82:46 Substitution
Substitution Jake Livermore replaces Raniere Sandro.82:46
Kyle Walker produces a right-footed shot from long range that goes harmlessly over the bar.82:06
Agim Ibraimi takes a shot. Martin Milec gets a block in.80:22
Raniere Sandro fouled by Zeljko Filipovic, the ref awards a free kick. Kyle Walker takes the free kick.78:56
Foul by Jan Vertonghen on Robert Beric, free kick awarded. Ales Mertelj takes the direct free kick.78:20
Clint Dempsey takes a shot. Save by Jasmin Handanovic.77:44
Shot from outside the area by Ales Mejac misses to the left of the goal.76:01
Robert Beric produces a right-footed shot from deep inside the six-yard box which goes wide of the left-hand upright. The ball is crossed by Yago Falque, Jasmin Handanovic makes a save.74:56
Soares Arghus fouled by Jermain Defoe, the ref awards a free kick. Jasmin Handanovic restarts play with the free kick.72:56 Substitution
Substitution Dejan Mezga goes off and Zeljko Filipovic comes on.72:21 Booking
Booking Booking for Kyle Naughton for unsporting behaviour.70:13
Tom Huddlestone takes the outswinging corner, Martin Milec makes a clearance. The offside flag is raised against Jermain Defoe. Jasmin Handanovic takes the indirect free kick.69:06
Gylfi Sigurdsson takes a shot. Soares Arghus gets a block in.66:44
Effort from 30 yards by Ales Mertelj. Save made by Hugo Lloris.64:28
Tom Huddlestone produces a right-footed shot from long range which goes wide right of the goal.63:44
Effort on goal by Agim Ibraimi from inside the penalty box misses to the right of the target.62:14
The offside flag is raised against Agim Ibraimi. Free kick taken by Jan Vertonghen.
Inswinging corner taken by Yago Falque from the right by-line, Jasmin Handanovic makes a save.57:54 Goal scored
Goal! - Gylfi Sigurdsson - NK Maribor 1 - 1 Tottenham Gylfi Sigurdsson fires in a goal from close range to the bottom left corner of the goal. Maribor 1-1 Tottenham.57:54
Soares Arghus gets a block in.57:52
Jermain Defoe takes a shot.56:44
The referee blows for offside. Free kick taken by Kyle Naughton.54:19
Corner taken right-footed by Tom Huddlestone from the left by-line, Aleksander Rajcevic makes a clearance.51:29
Shot by Goran Cvijanovic from just outside the area goes over the net.50:17
Short corner taken by Tom Huddlestone.49:34
The ball is sent over by Yago Falque.48:18
Marcos Tavares takes a shot. Save made by Hugo Lloris.47:04
Tom Huddlestone takes the direct free kick. Jermain Defoe is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Jasmin Handanovic takes the indirect free kick.47:04 Booking
Booking Booking for Dejan Mezga for unsporting behaviour.46:56
Dejan Mezga gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Kyle Walker.45:56
Robert Beric challenges Kyle Walker unfairly and gives away a free kick. Tom Huddlestone restarts play with the free kick.45:10 Substitution
Substitution Andros Townsend leaves the field to be replaced by Yago Falque.45:01
The game restarts for the second half.45:00 +64:16 Full time
Full Time The referee blows his whistle to end the game.45:00 +1:02 Half time
Half Time The whistle is blown to end the first half.42:43
The referee gives a free kick against Robert Beric for handball. Tom Huddlestone restarts play with the free kick.41:01
Dejan Mezga provided the assist for the goal.41:01 Goal scored
Goal! - Robert Beric - NK Maribor 1 - 0 Tottenham Robert Beric fires in a goal from close range to the bottom left corner of the goal. Maribor 1-0 Tottenham.39:58
Gylfi Sigurdsson takes a shot. Raniere Sandro is penalised for handball and concedes a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Ales Mejac.36:31
Tom Huddlestone challenges Robert Beric unfairly and gives away a free kick. Goran Cvijanovic takes the free kick. Effort on goal by Ales Mejac from outside the box goes harmlessly over the bar.35:52
Effort on goal by Jermain Defoe from inside the box misses to the right of the target.33:12
Raniere Sandro has a shot on goal from outside the area which misses left.29:49
Foul by Ales Mertelj on Jan Vertonghen, free kick awarded. The ball is swung over by Tom Huddlestone, Jan Vertonghen takes a shot. Save made by Jasmin Handanovic. Robert Beric is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Jan Vertonghen restarts play with the free kick.27:54
The ball is swung over by Aaron Lennon, outswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Tom Huddlestone, Aleksander Rajcevic manages to make a clearance. Clearance by Marcos Tavares.25:04
Kyle Walker produces a right-footed shot from just outside the penalty box that misses to the left of the target.21:30
Lobbed left-footed shot by Agim Ibraimi. Save by Hugo Lloris.20:10
Unfair challenge on Gylfi Sigurdsson by Ales Mertelj results in a free kick. Tom Huddlestone restarts play with the free kick. Jan Vertonghen challenges Jasmin Handanovic unfairly and gives away a free kick. Jasmin Handanovic takes the free kick.19:14
Free kick awarded for a foul by Gylfi Sigurdsson on Ales Mertelj. Aleksander Rajcevic restarts play with the free kick.14:03
The ball is crossed by Kyle Naughton.12:15
The ball is crossed by Dejan Mezga.9:24
The ball is swung over by Andros Townsend, Aleksander Rajcevic manages to make a clearance.5:44
The referee blows for offside. Hugo Lloris takes the free kick.1:45
Effort from the edge of the area by Gylfi Sigurdsson goes wide of the left-hand upright.1:24
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Jermain Defoe by Goran Cvijanovic. Tom Huddlestone takes the free kick.0:00
The game begins.
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