Tottenham Hotspur

Castrol Game Changer Award nominee - Steven Bergwijn

Steven Bergwijn bagged an incredible late double at Leicester
Steven Bergwijn bagged an incredible late double at Leicester / 90min | Castrol
Brought to you by
Castrol
facebooktwitterreddit

Steven Bergwijn has been nominated for the new Castrol Game Changer award - which will be awarded to the player with the single most game-changing performance during the 2021/22 Premier League Season.

Click here to vote for your 2021/2022 Castrol Premier League Game Changer.


When Steven Bergwijn came on in the 79th minute of Tottenham's trip to Leicester in January with his side trailing by two goals to one, no one could have predicted what was going to happen.

With less than 20 seconds of time remaining, still no one could have predicted what was going to happen.

The initial fixture was rearranged due to a Covid-19 outbreak in the Spurs camp, and despite putting in one of their best performances of the season (totalling a season-high 4.14 xG come full-time), Antonio Conte's men looked to be spiralling towards defeat.

They had dominated Brendan Rodgers' side for long stretches, but found themselves 2-1 down with just over ten minutes of normal time remaining.

Conte turned to Bergwijn, who has been a peripheral figure for much of his career in north London, to help turn the tide.

Barring the injured Son Heung-min, all of Spurs' available attackers were on the pitch, but without a system to follow, Leicester looked capable of keeping them at arm's length.

In fact, Bergwijn's best chance of becoming the hero looked to have come and gone when he was brushed aside by Caglar Soyuncu in the box with stoppage time looming. The towering Turkey international lashed out at Spurs' number 23, implying he had dived and was looking for a penalty.

But Bergwijn would have the last laugh.

Five minutes were added on, and Spurs launched what would seemingly be their last attack with 20 seconds of that time remaining. Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg's clever diagonal found the marauding Matt Doherty striding into the Leicester box, but he was unable to cleanly bring the ball down.

Bergwijn was, however. With one quick swing of his right leg, the Dutchman lashed an instinctive shot into the far corner. Tottenham had rescued a point in the final seconds of additional time.

And yet they weren't done there.

Bergwijn wheels away in celebration
Bergwijn wheels away in celebration / GEOFF CADDICK/GettyImages

Seemingly expectant for referee Jon Moss to blow his whistle there and then, Leicester threw nearly every man forward in one last attempt to restore their lead. But Youri Tielemans' pass forward was unforgivably flat, playing it straight into Hojbjerg's path.

The Dane then quickly shifted possession to Harry Kane, who in turn had noticed Bergwijn sprinting in behind the helpless duo of Soyuncu and Hamza Choudhury.

Kasper Schmeichel was reluctant to meet possession outside of the box, allowing Bergwijn to take a touch round him and find the net again, sitting Soyuncu on his backside in the progress and getting his ultimate revenge.

Bergwijn was on the pitch for just under 20 minutes but he only needed 90 seconds to almost single-handedly turn zero points into three for Tottenham.

It was impossible for Bergwijn to have had a better impact than he did, the perfect super-sub Game Changer performance in which he won the game from a losing position at the latest point possible.

facebooktwitterreddit