Eriksen earns point for Spurs, who finish in fourth after entertaining home draw
PUBLISHED: 17:04 12 May 2019 | UPDATED: 17:04 12 May 2019
PA Wire/PA Images
Premier League: Tottenham Hotspur 2 Everton 2
Christian Eriksen scored a wonderful free kick to provide a timely reminder of how important he is to Tottenham Hotspur as Spurs played out a 2-2 draw with Everton on the final day of the Premier League season this afternoon.
The Lilywhites took the lead early on through Eric Dier, but goals by Theo Walcott and Cenk Tosun stunned the hosts in the space of five second-half minutes in London.
Mauricio Pochettino thankfully saw Eriksen produce the goods with a stunning goal in the 75th minue for his 10th of the season for the club.
It may prove to be his last on home soil unless Spurs can come to an agreement with the Denmark playmaker, who will see his contract expire in June 2020.
Eriksen has been in talks with the club for a while, but not much progress appears to have been made and if this does turn out to be his final goal in Tottenham, it was a special way to finish.
Spurs ended the campaign in fourth, after Chelsea earned a draw at Leicester City, and it concluded another encouraging Premier League term for the club whilst the Everton supporters were also happy after Manchester City piped Liverpool to the title.
Wednesday's heroics were still on the tip of everyone's tongue as the Lilywhites played at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium for one last time this season.
It was not the final match of the campaign though, as Pochettino's men produced yet another Champions League miracle earlier in the week in Amsterdam.
When the big screens inside the stadium showed Lucas Moura's decisive third goal it received massive cheers from the fans inside the ground.
Spurs' preparation for their first ever European Cup final would get underway next week, but first of all they had the small matter of taking on an rejuvenated Everton.
Marco Silva had improved the Toffees fortunes in recent months and optimism was rife again at Goodison Park.
After recently defeating Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United, Everton wanted another top-six scalp and were out to spoil the party in N17.
Pochettino made five changes to the team which won 3-2 against Ajax with Heung-min Son suspended, Jan Vertonghen and Danny Rose injured and Kieran Trippier and Victor Wanyama on the bench.
Fernando Llorente led the line alongside man of the moment Moura while Erik Lamela, Ben Davies, Dier and Kyle Walker-Peters earned starts.
Tottenham got proceedings underway with a party feel atmosphere inside the stadium, but there was still work to be done with Spurs knowing a win could see them finish in third position for a second consecutive season.
It didn't take them long to take the lead and delight the jubilant supporters as the opener arrived in the third minute.
Lamela whipped in a corner which bounced around in the Everton area and dropped for Dier and he lashed home from close range.
It was similar to the early goal he scored against Cardiff at Wembley Stadium earlier in the season and Tottenham were hoping to kick on now and sign off at home with a flourish this term.
After a tough campaign, the fans singing 'I love Eric Dier, Eric Dier loves me' was a touching moment for the England midfielder after a difficult six months where he has struggled with illness more than anything following appendicitis in December.
Silva's team showed their threat in the 10th minute when Gylfi Sigurdsson picked out Michael Keane inside the area from a free kick, but his header was straight at Hugo Lloris.
Despite Tottenham's extreme efforts in the Netherlands, they looked sharp from the off and Dele Alli fired over with 13 on the clock after robbing Keane of the ball deep into Everton's half.
Spurs' players were popping up in various positions with Moura, Alli, Lamela and Eriksen all fluid during the opening 25 minutes.
Dier had a scare moments later when Bernard superbly turned away from Moussa Sissoko and chipped towards Tosun, who appeared to fairly hold off Tottenham's number 15, but referee Andre Marriner blew his whistle for a foul.
It seemed harsh at the time and a closer look on second reflection showed the Lilywhites had been given a let off by the man in the middle.
Bernard showed his class again on the half an hour mark when he controlled Walker-Peters header and fired towards goal from 16-yards, but a combination of Lloris and the post denied the Brazilian a leveller in the capital.
Everton were more than holding their own now and Pochettino's team needed to step things up to ensure they held onto a lead at the break.
Fortunately they did and nice link up play between Lamela and Alli created an opening for the Spurs number 20, but he dragged wide from 22-yards with 33 played.
The visitors came back again with Keane nodding Lucas Digne's free kick well wide and Sigurdsson then tried his luck against his old side, but fired straight at Lloris from 25-yards in the 38th minute.
Cheers did occur from the Everton fans in the corner of Tottenham Hotspur Stadium seconds later when they realised Manchester City had gone ahead at Brighton & Hove Albion - therefore moving back ahead of Liverpool in the title race.
It was an interesting footnote to the afternoon in London with the Toffees not the only club looking at results elsewhere.
As things stood with Leicester holding Chelsea, Spurs were on course to come third and it remained this way until half time despite some late Everton pressure with Digne hitting the wall with a free kick from 22-yards.
Tottenham made a change at the break with Wanyama replacing Alli, who looked to be holding his groin after the initial warm-up before the game.
Everton got the second period underway and Walker-Peters immediately attacked via the right, but his cross was deflected behind for a corner and then a pitch invader ran on to halt proceedings.
After he had been ejected, the game was able to resume and the away side forced a corner which Davies had to be alert from to block Walcott's shot.
Moura, who had been quiet, but perhaps that was understandable after Wednesday, was in the action with 54 played when he took a quick throw and it set Eriksen away, who cut inside and let fly yet his effort sailed wide.
Back came Everton and they perhaps should have equalised just before the hour mark when Wanyama lost possession and Tosun found Bernard, who had peeled off Walker-Peters, inside the area, but he poked wide.
Chances were still coming for Tottenham and Llorente should have done better in the 65th minute though he could only head straight at Jordan Pickford from a corner.
Silva made a double substitution after and introduced Ademola Lookman and Andre Gomes for Bernard and Idrissa Gueye with Gomes entering the pitch to chants from the home supporters after reports this week he is close to signing for Spurs.
Minutes later and Everton supporters started chanting 'we're all going to have a party, we're all going to have a party, we're all going to have a party, when Tottenham win the cup' which soon had the Lilywhites supporters joining in.
The Toffees then did give their fans something of their own doing to celebrate when they levelled and of course it had to be former Arsenal man Walcott.
Sigurdsson found the one-time England winger and he cut inside smartly before firing low into the bottom corner from 12-yards in the 69th minute.
It sparked wild scenes in the away end and three minutes later the Evertonians were up in arms again.
Again Sigurdsson was involved with his corner picking out Keane and although Lloris saved on the line, Tosun bundled the ball over from close range to make it 2-1 to the visitors in the 72nd minute.
With City grabbing a fourth at Brighton, the Everton fans had plenty to shout about, but this game had now turned into another bizarre final-day fixture with a fourth goal occurring with quarter of an hour left.
Tottenham won a free kick around 25-yards-out and after failing to make the most of his previous effort, this time Eriksen made it count.
Spurs' number 23 whipped the effort up and over the wall and into Pickford's bottom corner to grab his 10th goal of the campaign and level the scores in N17.
Given his ongoing contractual situation, it could be his last home goal for the club, but it served as another timely reminder of his talent.
Pochettino made his final roll of the dice with 13 minutes to go as Oliver Skipp and Vincent Janssen were brought on for Lamela and Llorente, who - like Eriksen - could be off in the summer after the Champions League final on June 1.
It failed to produce more late drama, however, as Tottenham and Everton had to settle for a share of the spoils in the end.
Spurs finished the campaign in fourth, above Arsenal for a third consecutive year, but not ahead of Chelsea, who ended on 72 points compared to the Lilywhites tally of 71.
Given everything Pochettino and this squad have had to deal with this season, it has been a successful 12 months and of course there is one more game to play; the small matter of the Champions League final against Liverpool on June 1.
The Lilywhites could conclude a memorable campaign with one final high if they can win in Madrid, but whatever happens the biggest thing to take from the last year is the importance of Pochettino. He has to be here come August.
Tottenham Hotspur: Lloris (C); Walker-Peters, Alderweireld, Dier, Davies; Sissoko, Eriksen; Alli (Wanyama 46), Lamela (Skipp 77), Lucas; Llorente (Janssen 77).
Unused substitutes: Gazzaniga, Aurier, Trippier, Marsh.
Everton: Pickford; Zouma, Keane, Mina, Digne; Walcott, Schneiderlin, Gueye (Gomes 65), Bernard (Lookman 65); Sigurdsson; Tosun.
Unused substitutes: Stekelenburg, Baines, Jagielka, Gomes, Kenny.
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