Sorry Spurs slump in Italy
Tottenham's disastrous run continues as they lost 2-0 to Udinese in the Uefa Cup.
By Pete Oliver
Last Updated: 23/10/08 11:15pm
Tottenham's disastrous start to the season continued in Italy as they opened their Group D campaign in the Uefa Cup with a 2-0 defeat to Udinese.
And to make matters worse for under pressure manager Juande Ramos, their latest loss was largely self-inflicted as goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes conceded a needless penalty and Jamie O'Hara was sent off with more than half an hour to go.
Gomes made a terrible mistake when he failed to deal with a simple back-pass and then pulled down Fabio Quagliarella to concede the spot-kick, which Antonio Di Natale converted in the 24th-minute.
The Brazilian tried to make amends with two fine saves in the second half but the damage had been done and Tottenham's woes were increased by a red card for O'Hara which left them chasing the game with ten men.
The midfielder was cautioned twice in the space of 52 seconds to become the third Tottenham player to be dismissed in their last two games.
O'Hara had started the game in preference to David Bentley, who didn't even make the bench following his critical comments regarding Tottenham's early season form.
Despite that wretched run, Tottenham started in upbeat mood with Jermaine Jenas and Aaron Lennon both stretching the Italian defence as Darren Bent had a chance with his head and Lennon shot at goalkeeper Samir Handanovie.
But all their good work was undone by Gomes's moment of madness which appeared to drain much of the belief from the Londoners.
The beleaguered Ramos sent on Luka Modric at the start of the second half and the Croatian briefly threatened to spark a revival.
But O'Hara's lack of discipline looked to have snuffed out any comeback hopes and Udinese would have added to their lead but for saves from Gomes to deny Maurizio Domizzi and Di Natale.
Tottenham barely mustered an attack in the second half but six minutes from time Bent almost scored an unlikely equaliser.
His header from a Giovani Dos Santos cross was superbly saved by Handanovie and Udinese immediately broke away to make sure of victory through a cool finish from substitute Simone Pepe.
|Udinese||Team Statistics||Tottenham Hotspur|
|1||1st Half Goals||0|
|8||Shots on Target||2|
|2||Shots off Target||5|