Micah Richards and Roy Keane disagree over ‘confusing’ Chelsea vs Tottenham incident

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Micah Richards and Roy Keane had a fiery debate on Tottenham Hotspur’s defending for Chelsea’s opening goal in their 3-0 home defeat to the Blues. After a solid opening 45 minutes, Nuno Espirito Santo’s side were completely outclassed by Thomas Tuchel’s side in the second half.

Two goals in eight minutes courtesy of a precise header by Thiago Silva and a deflected effort by substitute N’Golo Kante took the game away from the North Londoners, before Antonio Rudiger swept home a late third goal to confound Tottenham’s misery.

While Keane and Richards both agreed Chelsea were excellent in the second period, they were at odds against each other on Santo’s side’s defending for Silva’s opening goal.

Keane was scathing about Spurs’ defending, accusing the defence of a lack of commitment and desire to attack the ball and defend the corner.

“A lot of the time it’s about who wants to head the ball?” Keane said sternly.

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“We’ve seen his (Silva) defending, he had a tough start if you remember last season, for one or two games he was shaky.

“But he’s had a year in the game, he’s used to the pace, he’s surrounded by brilliant players.

“When the ball goes into these areas, some people want to defend and head the ball, Spurs don’t have that. People not doing the basics, stopping runners, being strong.”

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Silva ghosted into the box before getting in front of Dele Alli to head home Marcos Alonso’s looping, out-swinging corner.

Richards countered the former Manchester United captain; believing the goal was more down to the Brazilian’s intelligent and experienced movement, as opposed to poor defending on Tottenham’s part.

“It’s very intelligent the way he hangs out at the edge of the box,” said Richards. 

“He was always going to get the advantage, take nothing away from the header. “If you’re a Spurs player you think he’s going to be on the edge of the box. He comes in, it’s where he makes the run from.”

“By the time he [Ali] engages, the ball is in the back of the net. 

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“Not just the goal, his performance was outstanding, the way he was leading it, talking, he constantly pushes defenders up high when he signed from PSG, I was thinking why don’t PSG want to keep him 36, you’re thinking is he over the hill? He’s still a top, top defender.”

Keane did not take exception to Richards’ contradiction and proceeded to rip into the Spurs defence even more.

He accused Tottenham of failing to do the basics and show some heart to try and get to the ball first.

“It’s not confusing Micah. It’s somebody going to attack the ball and head the ball,” said a very frustrated Keane.

“Good delivery, he put it in the right area of course but who really wants to head the football and that’s it.”

Tottenham must dust themselves off ahead of a League Cup tie against Wolves, before traveling to fierce rivals Arsenal for the first North London derby of the new Premier League season.

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