Vintage José Mourinho the Architect of Tottenham's Carabao Cup Delight

James Cormack
Jose Mourinho masterminded a game of two halves on Tuesday night
Jose Mourinho masterminded a game of two halves on Tuesday night / MATT DUNHAM/Getty Images

Tottenham have won a penalty shootout, people. The end is very much nigh.

Following a 1-1 draw after 90 minutes and nine successful spot-kicks on the bounce, Mason Mount's effort which rebounded wide via the post sent Spurs into the quarter-finals of the Carabao Cup.

The Spurs players celebrate following Mason Mount's fatal miss
The Spurs players celebrate following Mason Mount's fatal miss / MATT DUNHAM/Getty Images

And their progression into the last eight much has to do with the work of manager José Mourinho on what was a vintage night for the Portuguese string-puller; from spats with Frank Lampard to chasing Eric Dier down to the home dressing room toilet midway through the second half, it was some night for the 'Special One'.

The way he set-up his Tottenham side was typical stuff, as well. With Harry Kane on the bench and Giovani Lo Celso rested, Mourinho utilised a passive 5-3-2 with Erik Lamela and Steven Bergwijn leading the line, while Sergio Reguilon made his debut at left wing-back.

On the surface, however, uninspiring is perhaps a generous way to summarise Spurs' first-half showing.

With clear intent to limit space centrally for the Blues in their deep block, the hosts were overly reliant on Bergwijn, Lamela and the odd darting run from midfield in regards to causing Chelsea trouble in transition - their most likely method of creating chances.

Steven Bergwijn failed to provide Spurs with an outlet on a tough evening for the Dutchman
Steven Bergwijn failed to provide Spurs with an outlet on a tough evening for the Dutchman / Pool/Getty Images

But with the freedoms of Aurier and Reguilon restricted, there were a distinct lack of outlets in this Spurs side meaning they were easily pressed. With Tanguy Ndombele the only press-resistant profile in the starting XI, the Blues had tremendous success counter-pressing and winning the ball back in dangerous areas.

Fortunately for Spurs, though, they went into the break just 1-0 down, a goal which came from a Reguilon error - and eager slide - in the build-up phase. On the whole, Mourinho's side had done well to limit Hugo Lloris' workload considering Chelsea's territorial superiority.

But then the alteration came, the switch flicked for Mourinho. After sucking up 45 minutes of pretty tame Chelsea pressure, now was the time to attack a vulnerable backline and a goalkeeper making his debut.

Edouard Mendy looked very assured, by the way, and the Senegalese international was called into action early in the second period to deny Reguilon after the Spaniard met Aurier's cross from the right with plenty of conviction - a sequence, nonetheless, which epitomised Spurs' contrasting performance either side of the break.

Sergio Reguilon has his effort denied amid an energetic second-half display
Sergio Reguilon has his effort denied amid an energetic second-half display / MATT DUNHAM/Getty Images

The hosts' more enterprising and aggressive approach allowed the previously limited wing-backs to maraud down their respective flanks and both enjoyed superb second halves. Aurier impressed going both ways while the debutant showed tremendous character to bounce back from his earlier error and put in an incredibly energetic and dynamic display.

The former Real Madrid man's destined to be a fan-favourite in N17, that's for sure.

Nevertheless, despite their improvement down the flanks, increased authority out of possession and the greater control established in midfield by the ever-improving Ndombele, Spurs' equaliser remained anonymous.

That was until a certain Erik Lamela, who, despite all his ludicrous hard-work, churned out a typically infuriating display, capitalised on some unconvincing Chelsea defending to poach an equaliser following a cross from that man Reguilon with ten minutes to go.

Mourinho's master plan worked a treat; limit the damage with a deep 5-3-2, then pick the opportune moment to be aggressive late on in the game. It was no surprise that Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Harry Kane earned minutes after the break, as Spurs switched to a back four to round off the contest.

The irresistible N'Golo Kante tried his best to swing momentum back Chelsea's way, but once Lee Mason blew the full-time whistle to send the contest into penalties, there was almost a sense of inevitability about the victor - despite the justified pessimism of the Lilywhite faithful.

This is undoubtedly a Spurs side on the up, they were superb against Newcastle on Sunday - forget about the nonsense which occurred in the dying embers - and have looked pretty good ever since a certain Frenchman pirouetted his way past James Ward-Prowse to eventually set-up Son Heung-min's equaliser at Southampton ten days ago.

The feeling around the club is great; Sergio Reguilon looks a sure bet to be a star, Tanguy Ndombele's second season remontada continues - his 2:20 Twitter compilation will be a must-watch, by the way - Gareth Bale's celebrating goals in the stands and, what do you know, Jose Mourinho still knows how to coach a football team.

Maccabi Haifa await on Thursday amid their hectic September schedule in the final hurdle of their Europa League qualifying adventure.

Onwards and upwards for the Lilywhites...