Son hattrick guides Spurs into semis
LONDON, England (AP):
Son Heung-min grabbed a hat trick as he seamlessly filled the void left by Harry Kane's injury-enforced early departure, powering Tottenham into the FA Cup semifinals with a 6-0 rout of third-tier Millwall yesterday.
The South Korean made it six goals in four English FA Cup games this season and he even set up fellow forward Vincent Janssen to end a seven-month wait for a goal from open play since joining Tottenham.
Christian Eriksen, who replaced Kane after 10 minutes, provided the cross for Son's third after scoring the opener and also set up Dele Alli's second-half strike.
But the joy at sealing Tottenham's trip to the semi finals for the first time in five years was tempered by Kane's ankle injury. Tottenham's top scorer missed 10 games after twisting the same right ankle in September and manager Mauricio Pochettino fears the worst again after he left in a protective boot.
"We cannot cry, we have to try to be positive," Pochettino said. "We have enough players to replace him."
Son can never be sure of a starting spot but he has netted 13 goals this season.
"Son can play like a striker," Pochettino said. "If you remember one of our best performances was a game against Manchester City here and he was the striker here when Harry was injured (and set up Alli's goal).
Son was also the target of abuse from some Millwall fans when he touched the ball in the first half at White Hart Lane, with chants of "DVD" and "selling three for a fiver" aimed at him. Millwall manager Neil Harris was asked in the post-match news conference about such chants being racially offensive Asian stereotypes.
WRONG IN FOOTBALL
"I'm sure it will be investigated and left to the authorities," Harris said. "We want people dealt with harshly. ... It's wrong in football and wrong in society."
Herman Ouseley, the Millwall-supporting chairman of anti-racism group Kick It Out, was unaware of the offensive interpretation of the "DVD"-related chants.
"If complaints are made they will have to be looked at to see if they have any validity to see if it stirs up racial hatred," Ouseley told The Associated Press.
Tottenham joins north London rival Arsenal and Manchester City in a strong semi final line up that will be completed after Chelsea hosts Manchester United today.