Echo Jury: Richard Smith reflects on Saturday’s draw with Spurs

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IT was a hard-earned point against a good Spurs side, but this game won’t go down as a classic by any stretch of the imagination, with neither side really creating any chances of note.

O’Neill seemed happy to let Spurs have possession for most of the match as once again we had two solid banks of four, with Sessegnon in the free role. And he was the one who was going to cause any damage, with a few excellent runs.

However, it was Tottenham who had the best chance of the match in the second half. Following a lovely flick inside by Lennon, Van der Vaart clipped the ball past Mignolet, but Turner was on hand to clear the ball a yard in front of the line.

Both sides had penalty shouts, though both would have been harsh had they been given.

The only real highlight came in the final 10 minutes. After Colback’s clearance had been blocked, Bale was through on goal and with Gardner as the only defender he made as good a tackle as you will ever see on the edge of his own box.

The game against Everton today is our fourth this season. Hopefully we will pick up a win in this one, after two draws and a defeat.

You know what you’re getting with Everton. They are a very well-organised side, who are on a good run of form at the moment.

That said, they have a cup semi-final five days after this game and for that reason, they may well rest a couple of their “big-name” players, which could give us the advantage we need to finally beat Everton for the first time in a long time.

To read the rest of the Echo Jury, please see tonight’s Sunderland Echo.