Fulham 1-2 Tottenham: Vital derby win for Harry’s lads
Written by Viorel Mesca
Spurs secured a vital London derby win, thanks to Tom Huddlestone’s controversial goal.
Redknapp lined up a strong first XI ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League clash with Inter and started the brightest missing two chances through Pavlyuchenko.
Spurs’ brazilian Sandro had been impressive on his full Barclays Premier League debut, as he went close a few minutes later. Huddlestone’s second half strike had originally been ruled out by referee Mike Dean, who overturned his decision to anger the hosts, who ended an unbeaten run against Spurs in the Premier League that stretched back to March 2002.
But it was Fulham who should have scored when the unmarked Diomansy Kamara headed Davies’ corner narrowly wide.
It was mostly one-way traffic with Aaron Hughes nodding over Danny Murphy’s cross and Carlos Salcido firing a glorious 25-yard shot just the wrong side of the post.
Fulham’s fans were angered minutes later, when the ball appeared to strike the arm of Alan Hutton in the penalty area. Soon afterwards, Kamara opened the score.
Spurs leveled the score immediately as Van der Vaart chipped the ball against the crossbar with Pavlyuchenko stroking the ball into the net.
Three minutes before the break, Gomes made a magnificent fingertip save from Kamara’s volley. Ledley King suffered a knock on his knee and was replaced by Bassong, as his presence for Wednesday’s clash remains doubtful.
At half time Sandro was replaced by Aaron Lennon, allowing van der Vaart to move into a role just behind Pavlyuchenko. Lennon made an immediate impact, his cross finding Van der Vaart who was denied from close range by the frame of Schwarzer.
As Spurs continued to press, the moment of controversy arrived. Huddlestone blasted a cannon-shot from 25 yards into the corner of the net, which was ruled for offside. After consulting one of his assistants though, the referee overturned the decision and awarded Spurs the goal, much to the home side’s fury.
Spurs missed the chance to put the game beyond doubt with Van der Vaart scoffing a volley wide and Lennon blazing over from 18 yards.
Kamara then had his chance to level as he improvised a flicked finish leaving Gomes with a comfortable save to make.
The home side poured forward in the closing momentsbut they were unable to find the goal that would have leveled the game.
Harry Redknapp took the time to praise the character of the team after the game.
According to tottenhamhotspur.com, he said:
“This is a difficult place to come, a very hard place to pick up a result, especially after going a goal down.
Fulham have been in great form as well and they are difficult to beat.
This is the third time this season we’ve come from behind and that doesn’t happen often in the Premier League.
That shows the character we’ve got, that we can go behind and still come back and win games.
Overall I felt we deserved it. We played well, kept the ball well and just about edged it.”
We need to continue winning league games and try to get into the top four again. We have to look to have another great season in the league.”
Thanks to this London derby win, Spurs are just 5 points behind leaders Chelsea and fancy their chances against European defending champions Inter.
Dear readers, have your say! Can Spurs get into the top four again?
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