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Tottenham 2-1 Southampton: Spurs cope without Kane

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  • Spurs win 10-straight PL home games
  • Tottenham cut Chelsea’s lead to 10 points
  • Saints lose Gabbiadini through injury
  • Spurs remain unbeaten at home this season

Tottenham Hotspur beat Southampton 2-1 on Sunday in the Premier League as Mauricio Pochettino‘s men rode a strong first half performance to victory and proved they can grind out wins without the injured Harry Kane.

Christian Eriksen put Spurs ahead and then Dele Alli doubled the lead from the penalty spot to make it 2-0 at the break. Southampton came back into the game strongly in the second half with James Ward-Prowse pulling a goal back to make it 2-1 but Saints couldn’t break through a stubborn Tottenham defense to snatch a point.

With the win Tottenham move on to 59 points and cut Chelsea’s lead atop the Premier League to 10 points, while Saints remain in 10th place on 33 points.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays

Spurs started brightly as Heung-Min Son got in-behind Southampton’s defense after a brilliant ball from Eriksen but Fraser Forster saved superbly as he rushed off his line.

Tottenham took the lead inside the opening 15 minutes as Eriksen cut in from the right side of the box and drilled a low shot into the bottom corner. 1-0 to Spurs.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings

Southampton responded well to going behind and Oriol Romeu smashed a fine effort just wide of the far post as Saints searched for a way to get back into the game. Toby Alderweireld then sent a powerful downward header in on goal from Eriksen’s corner but Forster produced a fabulous save to claw it away.

Saints then had two quick chances as Dusan Tadic combined with Manolo Gabbiadini and the latter lashed an effort inches wide of the post and then Tadic had a horrendous miss from close-range but was saved by the linesman stating that the ball had gone out of play before Nathan Redmond pulled it back. It clearly hadn’t. A huge let off for Spurs and they took full advantage of it.

Gabbiadini hobbled off injured after his snapshot, then moments later Saints gave away a penalty kick as Steven Davis connected with Alli and the Tottenham midfielder put home the spot kick to make it 2-0. Spurs cruising but the PK award was a little harsh on Saints.

Saints had a shout for a penalty kick of their own right on half time as Tadic was taken down by Ben Davies in the box but referee Andre Marriner waved away the calls.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

In the second half Saints pushed hard and found themselves back in the game soon after the interval.

Ryan Bertrand‘s cross from the left flank was finished superbly by Ward-Prowse at the back post and Southampton had a way back into the game. 2-1.

Buoyed by that goal Saints dominated possession but failed to create many chances as Shane Long battled hard but timed his runs incorrectly on multiple occasions.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score

Late on Saints searched for an equalizer as nerves increased among the home fans at White Hart Lane but Tottenham held on to keep their top four hopes well and truly alive and keep the pressure on Chelsea.

Lopetegui, Casemiro, Marcelo react to Super Cup loss

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Real Madrid fell apart in extra time of the UEFA Super Cup on Wednesday, losing 4-2 at the hands of cross-town rivals Atletico Madrid.

And new manager Julen Lopetegui says it was not down to desire, even considering how many trophies Real has lifted in recent seasons.

[ MORE: Austin approves MLS stadium ]

“These players have won a lot of titles but I do not think that their hunger for titles was missing tonight,” he said. “Last year in La Liga things did not go right for them. We want to get the best out of the team and start picking ourselves up after losing this title. We were all excited for this trophy.”

Losing his first serious match doesn’t bode well for Lopetegui, though his club sold Cristiano Ronaldo, didn’t start Luka Modric, and still came close on Wednesday.

Marcelo didn’t want to talk about transfers.

‘”We need to change our mindset because we have a whole season ahead of us,” he said. “I don’t make the signings. The squad looks good to me. We are united as a group. We played a good game until extra time.”

Casemiro has his coach’s back.

“Any team is bound to miss Ronaldo,” he said. “He is a great player, but he left and we cannot talk about him now, the same with Zidane. We have to talk about the coach, Lopetegui, he is doing a great job. We did good things and we must improve other aspects. The players here are trying to do our best to win titles for Real Madrid.”

Rooney bags two more, including free kick (video)

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Wazza has done it again.

The 32-year-old DC United forward scored for his MLS side against the Portland Timbers, days after producing the tackle/cross heard ’round the world (or at least England and MLS).

Rooney’s perfect run met a terrific ball from Yamil Asad and restored a deadlock between the two sides.

[ MORE: Austin approves MLS stadium ]

And this one, well, it doesn’t need much explanation (except to ask if the walls and goalkeeping in MLS are that substandard?

Report: NISA to join USL D-III in applying for USSF sanctioning

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The National Independent Soccer Association will join the USL D-III in applying for Division III sanction from United States Soccer Federation sanctioning by the Sept. 1 deadline for Fall 2019 play, according to Soc Takes.

The nascent league has been quiet since founder Peter Wilt left his post in order to run the new USL D-III side in Madison, Wisconsin.

[ MORE: Austin approves MLS stadium ]

The report says there will be as many 10 clubs, and that the league will utilize the European soccer calendar.

Where will the teams be, Soc Takes has some clues:

Soc Takes was previously provided a list of eight cities with their identities embargoed. Three of those cities were in California, while the other five were spread across the country. NISA may have “As many as 10” teams in their application. The source remains confident of a submitting a successful application.

Soccer in America is going to be a complicated follow soon, as NISA is one of at least three groups attempting to compete against the very strong MLS-USL-USL3-PDL alliance. Get your proverbial popcorn ready.

Porter: I should be “in the mix” for USMNT job after Vermes

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Caleb Porter is feeling recharged after a season away from soccer, and would be interested in the United States men’s national team job if the federation is interested in hiring him.

The Athletic’s Paul Tenorio spoke with Porter about leaving Portland, his decision to decline the Orlando City job, and the vacant USMNT.

[ MORE: Austin approves MLS stadium ]

As for his level of interest, the canny operator only put the thinnest veneer on it. Look no further than his endorsing Peter Vermes, who has signed a new Sporting KC deal since the American job opened up. From The Athletic:

“If you’re going American, Peter Vermes, for me, he is the guy that deserves the shot,” Porter says. “I believe that. That guy deserves to carry the torch of our national team. Peter Vermes, in my opinion, based on what he’s done in our league, he’s proven it as an American coach. If you don’t go with Peter Vermes, I think, based on what I’ve proven, I’m in the mix with another two or three guys who deserve consideration and I’d be open to talking.”

Porter says he doesn’t know what his next job is, though he’s assumed it will be in club soccer, and used some salty language to say there’s only job he wouldn’t take: Portland’s Cascadian rival, the Seattle Sounders.

The club that lands the MLS Cup and NCAA College Cup winner will have a fantastic and inspired coach, but let’s hope that USMNT general manager Earnie Stewart goes in a different direction. Porter may ultimately succeed in such a role, but already carries USSF baggage after failing to lead the U.S. U-23s into the Olympics before he took the Portland job.