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Tottenham holds advantage over Dortmund after first leg (video)

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Tottenham showed on Wednesday that against the top sides in Europe, they’re more than a two-trick pony.

Even without Harry Kane and Dele Alli, Tottenham surged to a confidence-boosting 3-0 win over Borussia Dortmund in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League tie. The match at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday began in a similar manner to Manchester United v. Paris Saint-Germain the night before, until a lapse of concentration led to Tottenham’s opener and game opened up from there.

[MORE: Champions League standings ]

Heung-Min Son, Jan Vertonghen and Fernando Llorente all scored for Spurs, who take a decisive three-goal advantage into the second leg in Germany on March 6. Meanwhile, it was the third-straight match for Dortmund where they had conceded three goals, and is another huge blow to the club that leads the Bundesliga by five points, with the margin slipping.

[READ: Declan Rice submits request to play for England]

After a back and forth first half, which featured Christian Pulisic taking a strike on goal from a narrow angle it only took 65 seconds or so for Tottenham to take the lead. Son found space behind the Dortmund defense and Vertonghen found him with a lofted cross, before Son scored with a right-footed volley.

Dortmund had to take a few risks to try and tie the match, though they also sat back at times, hoping to limit the damage. However, a mistake by Achraf Hakimi let Vertonghen burst into the box, and Serge Aurier found him with a beautiful cross to put Spurs up, 2-0 in the 83rd minute.

Three minutes later, substitute Llorente got his head on a corner kick that found the side netting, putting Tottenham in control of the tie.

Tottenham has to feel very confident of progressing to the quarterfinals at this stage, with a 3-0 lead. Dele Alli and Harry Kane could both return for the second leg, which could help Tottenham get a crucial away goal in Dortmund next month.

Son scores again as Spurs beat Foxes (video)

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  • Spurs third team this season to reach 60 points
  • Foxes play well, but finish six points off seventh
  • Son scores again, Eriksen bags beauty

Heung-Min Son‘s 11th goal of the season put a cap on Tottenham Hotspur’s action-packed 3-1 defeat of Leicester City at Wembley Stadium on Sunday.

Davinson Sanchez and Christian Eriksen also scored for Spurs — Eriksen’s a true spectacle (above) — who sit five points back of leaders Liverpool and meet the Reds on March 31.

Son’s 11 goals have come in his last 13 league matches dating back to Nov. 24. Crucially, he’s been red-hot in the absence of Harry Kane and Dele Alli.

Jamie Vardy scored his 100th senior goal after missing a penalty with his first touch of the game for Leicester City, who remains 12th on the table.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Harry Maguire nodded a long free kick on frame, and Hugo Lloris had to slap it over the bar in the name of safety. The ensuing ninth minutes corner was popped over the frame, and Spurs were off the hook.

Harvey Barnes pulled a Leicester shot wide of the far post off a James Maddison feed moments later.

The other side saw a penalty shout become a yellow card to Heung-min Son for simulation after Maguire got a piece of his ankle in the box and Son hit the deck. If it would’ve been awarded, you’d say Son embellished but the contact was sloppy. Shoulder shrug emoji.

Danny Rose continued a fine run of form in the early stages, and had an 18th minute run and shot foiled by Kasper Schmeichel‘s right arm.

A designed set piece allowed Spurs to break through in the 34th, as Christian Eriksen spotted a just onside Sanchez for a 33rd minute header. The goal was the Colombian’s first for Spurs.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

[ MORE: Premier League stats ]

Leicester’s second half was much improved, with Ben Chilwell getting a left-footed shot on target.

That’s when Jamie Vardy got his final instructions, but he wasn’t introduced until after James Maddison won the Foxes their penalty after coming together with Jan Vertonghen.

Vardy came on for Gray, and Maddison gave him the ball. His first touch of the game came from the spot, and Lloris saved the effort!

Three minutes later, Ricardo Pereira‘s clearance skills doomed Leicester for a second-straight week. His effort his Oliver Skipp and wound up on the boot of Eriksen, who ripped a classy long strike past Schmeichel.

Here’s a stat!

Lloris then stopped a hard Barnes drive at the other end, as the Foxes did not quit.

And Vardy got his goal anyway, sliding in front of Toby Alderweireld to get onto the end of a Pereira cross from the right.

Just as Leicester seemed prepared for stoppage time heroics, Son dribbled the better part of 60 yards after meeting a Moussa Sissoko clearance. He beat Schmeichel 1v1 from outside the 18 to close out the win.

Premier League preview: Tottenham v. Newcastle

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  • Newcastle has won 3 of the last 4 at Spurs
  • Spurs has won all 12 PL games this season vs current bottom half
  • Newcastle has lost 7 straight trips to Wembley (last win: 1955 FA Cup final)

Two teams breathing sighs of relief at opposite ends of the table meet as Tottenham Hotspur hosts Newcastle United at Wembley Stadium on Saturday at 7:30 a.m. ET live on NBCSN or live online at NBCSports.com.

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Spurs got back to winning ways last time out, but it required a comeback to do so, and all is not settled in North London. The last five Tottenham matches across all competitions have featured three losses, a last-gasp win against relegation-threatened Fulham, and a late come-from-behind win against Watford. They hold a solid seven-point lead over fourth-placed Arsenal but every match feels more important than the last given the recent form.

In addition, the dire injury situation has not been relieved, and if anything it has worsened. Still without Dele Alli, Harry Kane and Ben Davies who are suffering from long-term issues, now Heung-Min Son‘s status is in question after suffering from cramps. The South Korean has been heavily utilized the last few months after international duty in the Asian Cup, and could be feeling the effects of overuse.

For Newcastle, a win over Manchester City last time out – a second consecutive victory – has the Magpies with a pep in their step, but the job is far from done. They still sit just five points above the drop, very much still involved in the relegation scrap. Still, the pair of victories has Newcastle feeling much more confident, and another result against a top club could give them a true boost heading into the final third of the season.

New signing Miguel Almiron will not be available for this weekend’s match, still waiting on the completion of his work visa. Antonio Barreca, meanwhile, could make his debut on loan from Monaco, and Joselu could make his way back into the squad after missing out on the Man City win with an ankle problem.

What they’re saying

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino on title chances: “We are going to dream because we are close, we are there in a very good position and we are going to try and fight until the end to be as high as we can.”

Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez on turning fortunes: “I am happier now than one week ago. Why? We beat Man City and we brought in two players.”

Video preview

Prediction

These two teams will have a difficult and entertaining battle. With both sides still in a bit of flux, there’s plenty riding on the match. Despite that, a draw would be considered decent result for both sides given the cushion they both now hold over those below. A 1-1 draw seems a fair result, given Spurs’ spotty home form over the past few weeks.

Son, Llorente lead Spurs comeback win (video)

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  • Spurs one of only 2 Top Six teams to win
  • Cathcart gives Watford lead
  • Spurs net twice in second half

Heung-Min Son and Fernando Llorente brought Tottenham Hotspur back for a win and a very successful Premier League midweek.

Injury-hit Spurs answered Craig Cathcart‘s early goal to beat Watford 2-1 at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday, moving seven points back of Liverpool and two behind Man City.

Watford remains ninth with 33 points.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Cathcart nodded a corner kick into the goal with the crown of his head. It didn’t look pretty, but it beat Hugo Lloris for 1-0 in the 38th.

In the second half, Toby Alderweireld forced Ben Foster into a good save and then set up Fernando Llorente for a chance the Spaniard headed over the goal.

Then Watford’s Ben Wilmot made a goal line clearance on Danny Rose as Spurs pushed for an equalizer.

Son did the trick, lashing a shot through traffic to fool Foster. And then Llorente nodded in the excellent Rose’s cross before celebrating with his manager on the touch line.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

[ MORE: Premier League stats ]

Son will return to Spurs after South Korea eliminated from Asian Cup

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Amid a torrid of injuries to the attacking ranks, Tottenham will see a frontline player return than expected, a welcome sight for Spurs fans even if it comes with a twinge of guilt.

South Korea was eliminated from the 2019 Asian Cup in the quarterfinals after a surprising 1-0 loss to Qatar, releasing Heung-Min Son for a return to Premier League play.

[ MORE: Asian Cup quarterfinals recap, video ]

Despite the bittersweet return for Son, it’s a sight for sore Spurs fan eyes. Prolific striker Harry Kane is out until March with ankle ligament damage, while replacement striker Fernando Llorente has been terrible in his place, poking in an own-goal against Fulham in Premier League play and struggling against Chelsea in the League Cup loss. There was talk of deputizing Lucas Moura up front against the Blues after Llorente’s poor showing against Fulham, but that to this point has not materialized.

Midfielder Dele Alli is also out for significant time with a hamstring injury, while Moussa Sissoko has missed time of late with a knee injury, although the latter could be on his way back soon. Danny Rose and Serge Aurier also have struggled with injuries in recent games, with both coming off injured against Chelsea after Spurs had already used all its substitutes.

“I know many people expected big things of us. I’m so upset that I haven’t been able to produce my best,” said Son after the loss to Qatar. “It’s a reminder to us that there are no teams in Asia we can take lightly.”

Son’s return may not be in time for Saturday’s match against Crystal Palace in FA Cup play, and even if he were to return in time, Mauricio Pochettino may not want to use him after tournament play and lengthy travel, even with all the holes in the squad.