The second of my three major battles in Tottenham’s 2-0 victory over Newcastle is between these two central midfielders who both had significant effects on how the game panned out.
Luka Modric vs. Cheick Tiote
These two players seemed to cancel each other out in the first-half and you even saw the Spurs man get stuck in, throw himself around and break up the play which we are not very familiar with. Tiote as we know is that type of player and he showed it, he dispossessed Wilson Palacios in a good area but his shot was a tame one straight at Gomes.
Modric was pulling the strings and Alan Smith, Joey Barton and Tiote at times were literally chasing shadows. Tiote could have been sent off for two poor challenges after he had already received a booking and he was involved in Younes Kaboul’s dismissal for what looked to be a headbutt by the Frenchman.
Modric just oozes class when he has the ball at his feet. He showed his qualities at Aston Villa on boxing day and was involved in the quick-fire counter attack which saw Gareth Bale kill the game off we an excellent finish. Cheick Tiote looks like a decent player, possessing many good attributes but today the Croatian was on another level.
My Verdict: Luka Modric
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