Blues should have won – AVB

Blues captain John Terry weathered an early Spurs onslaught and the

loss of his central defensive partner – on top of the merciless

taunts of the White Hart Lane crowd – to help his side secure a

point in their final Premier League game before Christmas. Playing

barely 24 hours after being charged with a racially aggravated

public order offence over October’s altercation with QPR defender

Anton Ferdinand, Terry turned in one of his most impressive

performances of the season at White Hart Lane. Villas-Boas was

glowing in his praise of his skipper’s resilience, but also took

time to hail all his players. Only when the game was finished did

Terry acknowledge his off-field travails by approaching the away

supporters, tearing off his shirt and tossing it into the crowd for

what was an early Christmas present for one of the fans who backed

him throughout the game. They should also have been celebrating a

victory, with the visitors wasting a glut of chances to claim all

three points after falling behind inside eight minutes. Adebayor

pounced on yet more hesitancy from Blues goalkeeper Petr Cech to

give Tottenham the lead but Daniel Sturridge levelled. Chelsea then

took charge, despite defender Branislav Ivanovic and midfielder

John Obi Mikel both limping off with hamstring injuries that meant

Jose Bosingwa playing as an emergency centre-half. Villas-Boas

said: “Today showed our character, personality, excellent levels of

resilience and adaptation to circumstances. “Our passing game

exploded today to wonderful levels. “It’s fantastic to watch this

team play when they find each other in possession as they did and

create opportunities. It’s remarkable, outstanding. “It should have

been a Chelsea win.” The fact that it was not left the Villas-Boas’

side 11 points behind Manchester City but the Portuguese refused to

concede the title. “If you had said at the beginning of December

that we’d go through these games with two wins and two draws, I’d

have taken it running into the home fixtures,” he said. “In terms

of the title challenge, it keeps it alive.” Ivanovic and Mikel both

look set to miss the Boxing Day west London derby with Fulham but

Villas-Boas was optimistic David Luiz would be fit to return. He

confirmed he would not recall Alex – who is on the transfer list –

to his first-team squad even if it meant continuing to play a

full-back or midfielder out of position.