Kane leads Spurs to North London Derby win

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  • Tottenham goes third before Liverpool, Chelsea play
  • Spurs dominate with 18-5 shot attempts
  • Kane posts 7th goal in as many NLDs
  • Arsenal six points back of Top Four

Harry Kane‘s second half goal seized North London Derby glory for dominant-if-wasteful Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley Stadium on Saturday.

The 1-0 win pushes Spurs third for the time being, while Arsenal will finish the weekend at least six points back of fourth place.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

While the goalkeepers weren’t physically tested in the first 15 minutes, both Hugo Lloris and Petr Cech had to be razor-sharp as Spurs and Arsenal each pushed the pace in attack.

The first save, from Cech on Heung-Min Son, may have been going wide in the 18th minute.

Harry Kane pushed a chance over the bar as the match neared the half-hour mark, and Eric Dier missed a more egregious redirection from the edge of the six-yard box following a mishit Mousa Dembele attempt from the edge of the 18.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Ben Davies and Kane combined for a powerful opener, with the left-sided man sending an inviting cross and Kane rising above Laurent Koscielny to pound a header home. Arsenal wanted a foul on Kane, whose hands caught Koscielny after his leap, but it’s difficult to agree with the visitors.

Spurs won a dangerous free kick when Hector Bellerin dove into Son’s legs two yards outside the 18. Christian Eriksen presided over the opportunity, but Cech made an outstanding punch save on an upper 90-heading effort.

He’d have another chance in the 62nd minute, but his waist-high driven cross didn’t make it into the mixer, going out for a corner.

Spurs had more chances to score, but Son shanked a 17-yard shot into the atmosphere before Dele tried to get too cute with a flick that went wide of goal.

Cech then denied a free-dribbling Erik Lamela. Would Spurs rue their misses? Cech denied Kane again in the 76th minute.

Lamela dragged a languid chance wide of the far post in the 90th minute.

Alexandre Lacazette butchered an opportunity to level the score at the outset of stoppage time, and then dragged a shot past Lloris but wide of the far post two minutes later.

Dembele fouled Welbeck in a dangerous position at the very end of stoppage time. Mesut Ozil lorded over the chance, but the wall did its job.

Spurs cruise in replay vs. Newport, reach FA Cup 5th round

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It should have never come to Wednesday’s FA Cup replay, but Tottenham Hotspur have, at long last, defeated League Two side Newport County in the fourth round of the FA Cup, 2-0 at Wembley Stadium.

[ MORE: Forecasting the Premier League’s top-four race ]

Tottenham failed to control proceedings last time out and had to come back from a goal down just to secure a 1-1 draw and the subsequent replay.

With the north London derby coming up on Saturday (Watch live, 7:30 a.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com), Mauricio Pochettino opted to leave the likes of Harry Kane, Christian Eriksen, Dele Alli, Davinson Sanchez (all four on the bench), Hugo Lloris, Jan Vertonghen and Eric Dier out of Wednesday’s starting 11.

[ MORE: PFA urges Mahrez, Leicester to resolve standoff “ASAP” ]

The gamble paid off for Pochettino — to the tune of 24 shots to 3, and 6-1 on target — thanks in part to a 26th-minute own goal which was forced, somewhat, by Moussa Sissoko.

Spurs doubled their advantage just after the half-hour mark, courtesy of a composed finish from Erik Lamela, who made just his third start (and second 90-minute performance) since returning from 14 months on the sideline with a hip injury.

Up next in the Cup for Spurs is a trip to take on League One side Rochdale in the fifth round.

Klopp rips officials after PK calls aid Spurs comeback

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It’s difficult to fault Jurgen Klopp‘s furor after Tottenham Hotspur was awarded a pair of controversial penalty kicks, converting one in a 2-2 draw at Anfield on Sunday.

[ RECAP: Liverpool 2-2 Spurs ]

The notoriously fiery Liverpool boss held his composure during the post-match interview on NBCSN, but not his tongue.

The first PK, saved by Loris Karius, came when Harry Kane leapt over a charging Loris Karius. The second came moments after Mohamed Salah gave Liverpool a stoppage time lead, and after referee Jon Moss waved away penalty shouts against Virgil Van Dijk.

Spurs attacker Erik Lamela leapt in front of the Liverpool defender’s clearing attempt, and the linesman flagged Moss to signal a PK that Kane scored to make it 2-2.

Did Klopp get an explanation? Take it away, Jurgen:

“Did you ever hear? I am not allowed to go in their room until half an hour after. It was clear offside, unbelievable, I don’t know what they were discussing.”

“Yes, Virgil van Dijk touches him, but we all know Lamela wants the touch and we all know they were so hard fouls in the first half and we didn’t get any fouls. That was the level for the game today, but then a situation in the last minute like that?

“Wow. He wanted to be middle of interest and he is.”

Refereeing is difficult work, but Spurs supporters know they are lucky not to be five points back of the hosts after Sunday’s events.

Lamela discusses “worst time of my life,” fear of never playing again

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It took so long that Erik Lamela began to doubt whether or not he’d ever play again after being out of action for 13 months due to a hip injury which required two surgeries in a six-week period to correct.

[ MORE: Arsenal’s Cazorla endures 9th achilles surgery in 13 months ]

In the end, Lamela made it back from what he calls “the worst time of [his] life” and made his return to action in Tottenham Hotspur’s 2-1 defeat to Leicester City on Tuesday — quotes from the Guardian:

“It was crazy. It was probably the worst time of my life. I really wanted to play but it took too long, my injury.

“In really bad times you always think the worst. But my family was always with me and the supporters wanted me on the pitch, they bring me energy to work every day and to never give up. I’m here today because I really wanted it, and when you really want something you can do it. The manager and all the staff honestly were amazing. They were always with me, behind me. All of us wanted the same thing — me playing. Sometimes you have to respect the times and today I feel better.”

Exactly 400 days elapsed between Lamela’s last appearance for Tottenham — Oct. 25, 2016 — and Tuesday’s return. The 25-year-old Argentine made an instant impact for Spurs, as he replaced Christian Eriksen in the 77th minute and slotted the inch-perfect through ball to Harry Kane to make the score 2-1 in the 79th.

“Of course, I can get much better, I am still not 100 percent, but I am good enough to play and I’m happy to be back.”

Lamela’s time away wasn’t all bad, though. He became a father for the first time on Saturday.

Pochettino: Win at Leicester necessary; Lamela available

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Tottenham has one win from its last four matches, and Mauricio Pochettino needs to steady the Spurs ship in a hurry.

The London side is coming off a surprising home draw against West Brom, one week after losing the North London Derby. Throw in a narrow win over Crystal Palace that followed a defeat at Old Trafford, and it’s fair to call this a slump.

Good news: A big name is back.

[ MORE: Lukaku dodges ban ]

Erik Lamela hasn’t played for Spurs in over a year, and the Argentine is in contention to make a Tuesday appearance at Leicester City. Danny Rose is an option, though Toby Alderweireld and Victor Wanyama remain out of action. An ill Harry Winks is a question mark.

All of this as Pochettino says their title hopes would take a humongous hit if the poor form stretches into Tuesday.

“Of course, Manchester City have improved a lot from last season. The gap is massive – we will see what happens. We need to believe and try to win games. If we don’t win [against Leicester] – it is difficult to be a contender.”

Spurs won this fixture 6-1 last season, getting four goals from Harry Kane and a pair from Heung-Min Son. The Foxes have lost just once since September ended with a draw at Bournemouth.