Search

Lennon on song for Spurs to put the pressure on Arsenal and Chelsea

15:05 29 December 2012

Tottenham players celebrate their second goal, scored by Aaron Lennon during the Barclays Premier League match at the Stadium of Light, Sunderland. Photo credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire.

Tottenham players celebrate their second goal, scored by Aaron Lennon during the Barclays Premier League match at the Stadium of Light, Sunderland. Photo credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire.

Premier League: Sunderland 1 Tottenham 2

Aaron Lennon was on form as Tottenham claimed a vital three points at Sunderland to put the pressure on top four rivals Arsenal and Chelsea, who play tonight and tomorrow respectively.

Spurs had fallen behind to John O'Shea's strike on the half-hour mark, having been the better side in the opening exchanges.

But they produced a quick-fire comeback early in the second half to lead 2-1 after Carlos Cuellar turned Lennon's corner into his own net and the winger got on the scoresheet two minutes later.

Gareth Bale, although superb, courted controversy when he was booked for diving for the third time in five games, while under pressure from Cuellar meaning he will miss the game with Reading on New Year's Day.

The Lilywhites were able to hold off a late charge from the Black Cats to take all three points back to north London.

Tottenham had the first opportunity and Bale, who blasted a hat-trick against Aston Villa on Boxing Day, was at the heart of it.

The Welsh wizard burst down the left flank, turning Craig Gardner and leaving him for dead, before crossing the ball for Emmanuel Adebayor. However, the Togo international's shot was weak and easily dealt with by Simon Mignolet.

Sunderland hit back just after the 15-minute mark and Spurs defender Michael Dawson was needed to clear Adam Johnson's cross from the danger zone.

The Lilywhites had a golden opportunity to take the lead when Lennon played Adebayor through on goal but Mignolet narrowed the angle and turned the frontman's shot behind for a corner.

The right winger nearly teed up Bale but the Welshman's header looped over the bar with just under half an hour gone.

Tottenham should have taken the lead a minute later when Jermain Defoe tried to curl the ball into the far corner.

Sunderland defender Cuellar then mis-kicked it presenting the ball to Adebayor, but with Mignolet closing him down, the striker inexplicably fired the ball onto the crossbar from two yards out.

With 10 minutes to go until half-time, the Black Cats then gave Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris a scare as Cuellar turned Johnson's free-kick just over the bar with a looping header that landed on the roof of the net.

And two minutes later the home side had the lead. Kyle Walker lost possession in his own half and in the process of trying to win the ball back, conceded a free-kick.

Sebastian Larsson's set play caused problems and the ball fell to Steven Fletcher, whose shot was expertly blocked by Lloris. But the ball fell to O'Shea, who side-footed the ball home from four yards to give his side the lead.

Despite going into half-time trailing, Spurs were leading inside six minutes of the second period starting, and it was a gift from the Black Cats.

Lennon's corner caused problems and Cuellar turned the ball past Mignolet and into his own net to give Tottenham the equaliser.

Just three minutes later the comeback was complete as Lennon took the ball thanks to a deflection off Matthew Kilgallon. The winger then pushed the ball past O'Shea and tucked the ball home to give his side the lead.

Spurs should have had a third when Bale broke and had the Sunderland defence panicking. The Welshman teed up Defoe but Mignolet raced across his line to produce a fantastic save to deny the England striker.

A one-goal cushion looked vulnerable and Sunderland were not giving up and Lloris had to be alert to turn Cuellar's free-kick behind.

Bale was, once again, booked for diving when he went down without being touched by Gardner as the match entered the final 10 minutes.

Moments later, Clint Dempsey sent Adebayor clean through but Mignolet kept him out with his feet once again.

The Black Cats kept coming and Kyle Naughton was calm in the middle to clear Johnson's cross with four minutes remaining.

Lloris had to be alert to palm away another corner in stoppage time but Spurs were able to hold on for a vital three points in the race for a Champions League position.

Sunderland: Mignolet, Larsson (Wickham 80), Gardner, Kilgallon (Campbell 62), Colback, O'Shea (Bramble 68), Johsnon, McClean, Cuellar, Fletcher, Sessegnon.

Unused Substitutes: Westwood, McFadden, Vaughan, Dong.

Tottenham: Lloris, Lennon (Parker 83), Adebayor, Bale (Sigurdsson 90), Naughton, Defoe (Dempsey 76), Dembele, Dawson, Walker, Sandro, Caulker.

Unused Substitutes: Friedel, Vertonghen, Huddlestone, Livermore.

Referee: Martin Atkinson.

Attendance: 41,168.

Related articles

0 comments

Latest Hampstead & Highgate Sports News

16:20

Mauricio Pochettino says Tottenham are “1,000 miles ahead” of where they were in his first season at the club, and he believes his side are “looking like the best team in the world” as the Lilywhites prepare to visit Manchester City on Saturday.

15:16

Mauricio Pochettino says Jan Vertonghen’s ankle injury is not as serious as was first feared – but he admits there is ongoing concern about Erik Lamela’s lack of progress after almost three months on the sidelines with a hip problem.

07:00

Head coach Peter Breen says there is a growing feeling at Hampstead that the club can win the league and secure promotion after Saturday’s results took them to the top of the table.

Yesterday, 16:00

It was another majestic display from Tottenham against West Bromwich Albion on Saturday as they secured a sixth consecutive Premier League victory – and right at the heart of it was Mousa Dembele.

Yesterday, 14:54

Manager Gary McCann admits Hendon have a huge battle on their hands to retain their Ryman League Premier Division status and believes they need to acquire another 24 points to avoid the drop.

Yesterday, 14:47

Wingate & Finchley secured their second successive league victory on Saturday as Tommy Tejan-Sie struck a last-minute winner away against basement boys Grays Athletic.

Tue, 13:07

The Under-13 boys’ team from University College School took top honours at the Jack Petchey London Schools’ Team Finals on Saturday.

Tue, 11:42

Draws are relatively rare in rugby so it is certainly unusual that Saracens have now had two in a row – but the character and resolve they have displayed in both matches has been entirely familiar.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Most read Hampstead & Highgate sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now