MONDAY 23RD JANUARY, 2023
FULHAM 0(0) TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 1(1)
Referee:- Paul Tierney
Assistants:- Constantine Hatzidakis, Neil Davies
Fourth official:- Craig Pawson
VAR:- Michael Oliver
Assistant VAR:- Darren Cann.
Fulham (4-2-3-1):- Leno; Tete (sub Solomon, 80), Diop, Ream (Capt.), Robinson; Palhinha, Reed (sub Cairney, 65); De Cordova-Reid (sub Wilson, 87), Pereira, Willian (sub Vinicius, 87); Mitrovic
(Cairney took the armband from Ream when he came onto the pitch)
Subs not used:- Rodak; Kurzawa, Tosin; Chalobah, James
Booked:- Palhinha (foul on Hojbjerg)
Spurs (3-4-3):- Lloris (Capt.); Romero, Dier, Davies; Emerson Royal, Bentancur, Hojbjerg, Perisic; Kulusevski (sub Bissouma, 90+1), Kane, Son (sub Richarlison, 76)
Subs not used:- Forster; Sanchez, Tanganga, Lenglet; Doherty, Skipp, Sessegnon
Booked:- Son (foul on Tete), Romero (foul on Mitrovic), Bentancur (Dissent)
Kane’s record-equalling goal seals vital win
Thanks to Greg Smith for this picture
Harry Kane’s record-equalling 266th club goal in first half added time was enough to secure an important away win to put Spurs five points clear of their opponents and pursuers and within three points of the top four. Home fans will be hoping Harry has aa rest at Preston on Saturday and that he can beat Jimmy Greaves’ fifty three year old record in front of a big crowd against Manchester City! This observer has been lucky enough to witness both our record-holders in the flesh. Heung-min Son had the assist for Kane’s excellent goal, and this was the first Kane-Son combination since 8th October in another 1-0 away win - at Brighton.
Marco Silva’s Fulham were hoping for a home win which would have put them above Spurs, but that was not to be. Antonio Conte fielded an unchanged side for the first time since October. Fulham dominated the early first half possession, but once Spurs showed more aggression and got higher up the field, they caused uncertainty in the Fulham defence. Initially it had been like watching “walking football” from Spurs. The midfield duo of Bentancur and Hojbjerg was not firing properly, and Son was too often losing the ball in the middle. Kane was not going to get his goal without supply. Only Kulusevski looked able to bring the ball forward.
The match had been delayed because of public transport problems (The District Line had been suspended on the tube) and there was a further delay because referee Paul Tierney was having technical issues with his radio equipment. Spurs kicked off, playing away from the Putney End. Now that Fulham are enjoying success and attract more home fans there is less room for travelling fans in what used to be a “neutral” section. The Spurs section was in good voice throughout with support for the team, Antonio and of course Kane, but they were soon on the back of Daniel Levy (in both halves).
Eric Dier hit a speculative shot (or more likely a pass) from distance after only 27 seconds which landed on Leno’s net. Fulham worried the Spurs defence with a number of crosses aimed at top scorer Mitrovic. The first of these came from Decordova Reid on the right, but the Spurs defence cleared.
That Spurs section enthusiastically chanted the "Y word" about which the club tries to educate in every home programme, clearly to no avail.
Fulham had a shot on goal after 9 minutes when Son lost the ball around halfway and Decordova-Reid hit a shot from 25 yards, saved by Hugo Lloris diving to his right. Hugo would gain his 126th Premier League clean sheet. It was his sixth of the season, and his second in London this month after our 4-0 away win against Crystal Palace.
A free kick struck by former Manchester United man Andreas Pereira was comfortable for Lloris. Finally, after 13 minutes, Kane won a corner on the right after good work by Kulusevski who had advanced down the right flank. Perisic hit the ball deep. Hojbjerg hit a powerful pass back into the middle, where Davies fired over the target.
Decordova-Reid raced away down the right flank (he looked offside to me) and when he crossed Harrison Reed hit a reactive right footed shot which was saved by Lloris. It had not been much fun for a Spurs fan to watch so far. Mitrovic headed wide from another cross and Son was booked when his foot landed on Tete’s ankle. The VAR review was brief, and in Son’s favour.
Half an hour had passed, and Spurs got going. After good play by Hojbjerg and a good forward pass, Son found Kulusevski who went down in the box having been whacked by the elbow of Diop. The VAR review was against Spurs this time. Kane received a ball from his left, turned and made room for a right-footed shot from 25 yards, but this passed just over the target. Kulusevski made another good advance down the right and got the benefit of a rebound off the corner flag before passing inside to Emerson Royal, whose shot was parried by Leno for another Spurs corner.
Spurs had three corners in succession and were definitely in the ascendancy. However, they lost the ball again in midfield and Lloris had to save from Willian on the break. Fulham had a free kick on the right after a foul by Perisic. Pereira floated in the kick and with both Diop and Palhinha challenging it was the latter who headed over. Spurs had a free kick outside the Fulham area after a foul by Ream on Son. Kane took the kick, which was blocked by the wall.
There were three minutes of added time and Kulusevski won a corner on the right. In the end, after this corner, Hojbjerg hit a good central pass to Son who quickly put the ball in the right spot for Kane to turn and plant a lovely right-footed shot inside Leno’s left post. Club goal number 266 was Premier League goal number 199 and London Derby goal number 48. It was also Kane’s 105th away Premier League goal and the 44th Kane-Son combination. Finally, this was Kane’s 300th Premier League appearance for Spurs.
The second half also began late, at 9.25pm after more technical problems for the referee. There was an early scare when Fulham claimed a penalty for a foul by Perisic on Decordova-Reid. There was no foul, and the incident was probably outside the area anyway. Next, Fulham wanted a corner when Mitrovic rose with Dier. The goal kick decision was probably wrong. Dier needed treatment for a potential head injury.
Fulham were getting more possession again but could find no end product. The Spurs defence was strong throughout the half, but special credit must go to Emerson Royal who had one of his better games up and down the line. Kane had a great chance to score a second goal after 57 minutes. Following a corner on the right, Kulusevski crossed to the back post where Ben Davies headed back and Leno tipped Kane’s close-range header over his bar.
Spurs were seemingly in control, defending strongly and with great confidence. We wanted a second goal to breathe more easily, but the story of the game did not change. Mitrovic headed over a Cairney cross. Kane hit a right foot shot wide after Dier had returned a Hojbjerg cross into Harry’s path.
Carlos Vinicius was a late replacement for Willian and his run led to a chance for another sub Soloman. It was a swinging shot from the left and was probably passing wide, but Hugo pushed it out for good measure. Bissouma replaced Kulusevski to reinforce the defence for the six minutes (plus) of added time. Antonio Conte displayed great passion in celebrating the win towards the away fans.
· Spurs record in recent London Derby League matches
· Squad numbers,appearances,bookings & goalscorers
· Read the preview for this game.
· All the Spurs Stats you could hope for here! THFC6061 Sports Stats
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