Tottenham's underwhelming start to the new year continued with a 0-0 draw against in-form Watford at Vicarage Road. Astonishingly, the result saw Jose Mourinho's men register their first goalless draw in 93 Premier League matches, but both sides desperately lacked quality in front of goal.
Paulo Gazzaniga saved Troy Deeney's penalty, after a handball from Jan Vertonghen, while Spurs came within millimetres of snatching all three points in stoppage-time, but Ignacio Pussetto hooked the ball off the line spectacularly.
Tottenham started brightly, and the likes of Dele Alli, Erik Lamela and Giovani Lo Celso all looked dangerous during spells of link-up play, with Alli so nearly crafting the opener after threading through Lucas Moura with a remarkable pass. Gazzaniga earned a clean sheet with a good save from Deeney's spot-kick, and that should improve his confidence.
Spurs will be disappointed at the manner in which they allowed Watford to fight their way back into a contest that threatened to be heavily one-sided in the early stages. They were guilty of some wasteful finishing and it was a very average performance which saw Watford end the stronger of the two sides.
Manager rating (out of 10)
5 -- Mourinho recalled Lo Celso and Jan Vertonghen, with Japhet Tanganga operating at left-back. The latter has impressed in recent weeks but was out of his depth here against Ismaila Sarr, although Spurs are now winless in four and are yet to score a Premier League goal in 2020.
Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best, players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)
GK Paulo Gazzaniga, 7 -- The Spurs keeper could have turned up 40 minutes late and still found the scores level at 0-0. He had to deal with a couple of looping Deeney headers, but he did so comfortably and denied the same man from the spot with a dive to his right.
DF Serge Aurier, 6 -- The Ivorian was troubled as Etienne Capoue caused his old club problems on the flank and his first-half attacking contribution wasn't great either, although he improved significantly after the break and did superbly to get a toe in as Gerard Deulofeu surged towards the defender at speed.
DF Toby Alderweireld, 6 -- The skipper stood firm as Watford grew in confidence and did just about enough to stop Deeney connecting with Sarr's cross properly.
DF Jan Vertonghen, 6 -- Returned to his favoured position in the centre, he channelled his inner Virgil van Dijk as he looked to unleash his wingers with some delightful floated balls out to the flanks. But the Belgian gifted the hosts an opportunity from the spot when his flying block struck his arm -- though he was bailed out.
DF Japhet Tanganga, 5 -- The versatile youngster started well and had the better of a fascinating personal battle with Sarr early on, but after his booking, he was embarrassed by the same player for most of the second half.
MF Harry Winks, 6 -- Had his work cut out as the only naturally defensive player in a five-man Tottenham midfield and struggled to provide any meaningful resistance. In fairness, that was partly down to Alli neglecting his defensive duties, while Winks picked out Son Heung-Min with a stunning crossfield ball. Picked up a booking after a fiery exchange with Abdoulaye Doucoure, but no harm done.
MF Dele Alli, 6 -- Asked to play in a deeper role, he was still involved in some delightful exchanges -- particularly with Son. The England man wasted a glorious chance when he headed Son's cross over and he left Winks exposed defensively. Was NOT happy about being subbed.
MF Erik Lamela, 6 -- Issued an early statement of intent with a dangerous run, but the midfielder couldn't hit the target and that proved to be his best opportunity. He was involved in some neat passing exchanges with the likes of Lo Celso thereafter but couldn't break through.
MF Giovani Lo Celso, 7 -- Spurs might have a good player on their hands if he is given more game time. His directness and energy seemed to help his side move up a gear, and he picked out Son on several occasions with some exquisite, pinpoint passing, although he faded after the break.
MF Son Heung-Min, 7 -- The South Korean always looked the most likely to make the net bulge. He tested Ben Foster with a deflected effort, but he blazed over after a lightning burst that caught the entire Watford defence on their heels.
MF Lucas Moura, 5 -- Had a poor game and should have done better when he was beautifully threaded through on goal by Alli, firing straight at the outrushing Foster. He's no Harry Kane.
FW Gedson Fernandes, NR -- Replaced Lo Celso in the 79th minute and instantly found himself in the thick of it, but his shot from a wide position was smacked away by Craig Dawson.