football Slides Sports News


Tottenham booked their return to the Champions League with a 5-0 rout at relegated Norwich where Son Heung-min earned a share of the Premier League Golden Boot.

Son scored twice in five second-half minutes to finish level with Liverpool’s Mohamad Salah on 23 goals as Spurs ran riot to complete an achievement that boss Antonio Conte had described as needing a “miracle”.

Tottenham were ninth when the Italian took over in November and then seven points adrift of fourth when they lost to Burnley in February but 10 wins from their next 14 games saw them overhaul Arsenal, Manchester United and West Ham.

Dejan Kulusevski scored twice and Harry Kane also bagged as Spurs made sure there would be no last-day failure at Carrow Road.

They will return to the premier European club competition after two seasons away and the future looks bright if they can get Conte to commit his future to the club this summer.

Norwich are heading in the opposite direction after another listless display left their home fans chanting against the board and they will have to regroup in the summer ahead of another stint in the Championship.

It never looked like it would be a case of the north London club being ‘Spursy’ as Conte’s side started confidently.

They had an early chance to ease their nerves inside the opening 10 minutes as a quick counter-attack saw Kulusevski cut back to Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, who blazed over when he should have scored.

That did not matter, though, as they went ahead in the 16th minute.

Hojbjerg’s ball over the top played in Rodrigo Bentancur and as he raced in on goal the midfielder squared for Kulusevski to tap in from close range.

Norwich were almost gifted an equaliser as a sloppy Eric Dier pass allowed Milot Rashica in on goal but he shot wide.

Instead, it was a poor pass at the other end that led to a goal as Spurs doubled their lead just after the half-hour.

Goalkeeper Tim Krul was playing out from the back, but he passed straight to Bentancur, who crossed for Kane to head into an empty net.

Qualifying for the Champions League was the primary goal for Spurs, but the second was for Son to overhaul Salah in the race for the Golden Boot.

He spurned a good chance in the first half as he chose to attempt a first-time volley at the far post when he had time to bring it down.

For large periods of the second half it looked like he would miss out on the silverware as he missed three golden chances.

First he saw an effort palmed away by Krul, who then produced a miraculous save to deny the South Korean from close range after a telepathic cross by Kane.

Then moments later, Kulusevski barged through on goal, rounded Krul and – with an empty net to shoot at – attempted to square to Son, who was tackled by Max Aarons.

The Swede was not going to make the same mistake as two minutes later he out-muscled a defender following Kane’s pass, cut inside and then curled a sublime effort into the far top corner.

Five minutes then changed the course of Son’s afternoon as he scored twice.

After again being denied by Krul, he got another bite of the cherry as Lucas Moura popped off a quick pass and the South Korean found the bottom corner.

Then he put himself in the outright lead as he curled a trademark effort into the far corner from 20 yards to mark mass scenes of celebration.

Salah’s late goal at Anfield did not dampen the mood as Son’s and Spurs’ season ended on a high.

football Slides Sports News


Tottenham kept their Champions League hopes alive as they put 10-man Arsenal to the sword with a 3-0 victory in a pulsating north London derby.

Victory for the Gunners would have booked them a top-four spot, but Antonio Conte’s men were never going to let that happen on their own patch.

Spurs’ motto emblazoned in the stands before the game was ‘Dare, Dream, Do’ and they delivered in style as Harry Kane continued his love affair with this fixture by scoring twice and partner in crime Son Heung-min added another.

Kane’s brace, which took him to 13 north London derby goals in just 17 games, came in the space of a 15-minute first-half spell in which Arsenal threw the game away.

They conceded a needless penalty in the 22nd minute, which Kane emphatically converted, then Rob Holding picked up a second yellow card before the England captain doubled the lead four minutes later.

Son’s goal, which took him to 21 for the season, came early in the second half and killed the game as the Spurs fans enjoyed their evening.

Despite the chastening night, Champions League football next season is still in Arsenal’s hands as they remain a point above Tottenham with two games left and, if they beat Newcastle and Everton, they will be assured of a return to the top tier of European club competition for the first time since 2017.

This was the first time this fixture had been played at Tottenham’s new stadium in front of a full crowd and the atmosphere did not disappoint as a frantic opening 15 minutes was greeted with a wall of noise.

The tone was set for an ill-tempered affair early on, with both teams guilty of cynical challenges, so it was little surprise that another foul led to a decisive moment in the game.

Dejan Kulusevski cut inside and sent a cross in which found its way to the back post where Cedric Soares clumsily barged Son over, with referee Paul Tierney pointing to the spot.

The result from the penalty was a formality as Kane sent Aaron Ramsdale the wrong way, sending the home crowd into euphoria and continuing the striker’s excellent scoring record against the Gunners.

Arsenal’s indiscipline has been a key feature of Mikel Arteta’s reign and again it reared its ugly head as Holding let his side down in the 33rd minute.

Having been booked seven minutes earlier for a cynical foul on Son, he did not learn his lesson as he blatantly obstructed the South Korean, barging him with his shoulder, and was rightly given his marching orders.

It was the 13th red card of Arteta’s time in charge, five more than any other Premier League team in that period.

Spurs sensed blood and took further control of the game four minutes later by going 2-0 up.

Rodrigo Bentancur got to Son’s corner first, flicking it on to the back post where Kane stooped low to head home from close range.

The hosts wanted more and Kane, eyeing a first north London derby hat-trick, had a goalbound shot blocked and Emerson Royal scooped over at the far post when it seemed easier to score.

Any thoughts Tottenham might ease off in the second half were put to bed within two minutes as Son made it three.

Kane turned Gabriel, who was able to recover and get a toe to the ball, but could only poke it to Son, who cleverly clipped the ball home.

Spurs threatened to run riot and really embarrass their rivals and only a couple of smart stops from Ramsdale prevented that.

First, the England goalkeeper got down to keep out Emerson’s header and then he palmed away a swerving Kane shot.

Son could have moved level with Mohamed Salah in the Golden Boot race on 22 goals but he clipped over from Ryan Sessegnon’s centre when the goal was gaping.

With less than 72 hours until they are next in action against Burnley at 12pm on Sunday, Conte’s men played within themselves for the final quarter of the game and saw a famous night out in style.

football Sports News


Tottenham blew a huge hole in Liverpool’s Premier League – and quadruple – hopes as Son Heung-min’s 20th goal of the season earned them a 1-1 draw at Anfield to gift the advantage to Manchester City.

Despite Luis Diaz’s 74th-minute equaliser and manager Jurgen Klopp going for broke, knowing he had no other option, the hosts now require their title rivals to lose one of their four remaining matches.

Even though the point took Liverpool top of the table, it was only courtesy of a superior goal difference of one and Pep Guardiola’s side will go three points clear with a win at home to Newcastle on Sunday.

The draw did little for Spurs’ top-four hopes either as they remain a point behind north London rivals Arsenal, who host struggling Leeds a couple of hours before City kick off.

Liverpool’s chances of overhauling City, who have only the title to focus on after their dramatic Champions League exit to Real Madrid in midweek, in this pulsating race were always balanced on a knife edge as they knew one slip-up would probably mean their hopes were over.

Tottenham were seen as the biggest challenge of their remaining four matches and so it proved as Antonio Conte brought a disciplined game plan to Anfield.

The tactics were evident from the off – five at the back, four in midfield, double-up on Mohamed Salah and Diaz and look to hit the space behind their opponents’ full-backs, particularly Andy Robertson.

It was fine in theory, but Liverpool’s recovery of possession was up with the best it has been all season and Spurs barely had a moment’s peace.

The three biggest cheers in the opening 12 minutes were for team combination which retrieved a lost ball, Trent Alexander-Arnold dispossessing Harry Kane down by the corner flag in front of the Kop and Jordan Henderson sliding in to block a Kane shot from a rare Spurs counter.

Tottenham’s plan also relied on them not conceding set-pieces in dangerous areas, but that was easier said than done, with Virgil Van Dijk missing the target with one header from a corner and hitting the crossbar with another late in the half.

Hugo Lloris only just managed to claw away Ryan Sessegnon’s header back across goal with Salah lurking, while the France goalkeeper also got down well to blow a low Diaz effort after a quick exchange with Sadio Mane.

Tottenham’s one effort of any threat saw Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg hit Alisson’s right-hand post from distance, although the Liverpool goalkeeper looked like he had it covered all the way.

But the visitors decided to open the game up in the second half and it paid dividends in the 56th minute when Kane was allowed to run from deep and pick out Sessegnon on the left of the penalty area and his low cross was turned in by Son at the far post.

The South Korean became the fifth different Spurs player to score 20-plus Premier League goals in a season, following in the footsteps of Teddy Sheringham, Jurgen Klinsmann, Gareth Bale and Kane.

Ibrahima Konate flicked a header over as Liverpool continued to squander set-piece opportunities, while being fortunate to escape conceding another when Son diverted wide from close range.

Almost immediately Klopp switched to 4-2-4, replacing Henderson with forward Diogo Jota and introducing the fresh legs of Kostas Tsimikas at left-back for the tired Robertson.

Ben Davies’ flying block to repel Salah’s drive felt like a pivotal moment, but with 16 minutes remaining Diaz’s low strike deflected off Rodrigo Bentancur and inside Lloris’ right-hand post.

Anfield erupted and, encouraged by the cacophony of noise, the hosts redoubled their efforts.

Conte sent on Davison Sanchez for Sessegnon and later the more defence-minded Harry Winks replaced Dejan Kulusevski, but surprisingly Liverpool did not test Lloris nearly as much as they would have hoped and, as their seconds ticked away, so seemingly did their title hopes.

football Slides Sports News


Tottenham’s hopes of qualifying for the Champions League suffered another blow as they limped to a disappointing 0-0 draw at Brentford.

After Arsenal moved into the Premier League’s top four by beating Manchester United in the lunchtime kick-off, Spurs fluffed their lines with a sub-par performance in west London.

They looked devoid of all attacking creativity and for the second successive game they failed to have a shot on target.

It could have been even worse as Ivan Toney was denied by the woodwork twice as Brentford almost made it four wins in a row.

Tottenham’s front three of Harry Kane, Son Heung-min and Dejan Kulusevski were again blunted and it looks as if Spurs, who had scored a glut of goals in recent weeks, have been found out.

Their top-four hopes remain in their own hands, however, as they still have Arsenal to play at home in a game that is looking like being decisive in the race.

The narrative before the match was about Christian Eriksen coming up against his former club for the first time since leaving in January 2020 and then suffering a cardiac arrest at last summer’s European Championship.

And the Denmark international was instrumental to a strong Brentford start as he directed play.

Bryan Mbeumo had a shot deflected just wide as the Bees forced a number of early corners.

It was from one of those that they came within inches of breaking the deadlock in the 19th minute as Toney sent a header from Eriksen’s delivery crashing into the crossbar.

Spurs, who were blunted by Brighton last week, again look bereft of any sort of creative flair as Brentford contained them by packing the midfield.

Things looked up briefly early in the second half as Kane got involved for the first time by seeing his shot on the turn blocked, while there was a moment of pinball as Kane, Kulusevski and Rodrigo Bentancur all had efforts blocked in quick succession.

But Brentford got a second wind and came back at Spurs, with Kane needing to clear off the line from Pontus Jansson’s header, with Hugo Lloris getting down well to keep out Eriksen’s low shot.

Spurs threw bodies forward in search of the win at the end but rarely looked like getting through.

They had a major escape at the death as Toney was denied by the woodwork again, heading another Eriksen delivery into the post.

There was almost drama at the other end in injury time as Kane tried an acrobatic volley which went inches wide.

But Spurs did not deserve the win as they lost ground in the race for the top four.

football Slides Sports News


Son Heung-min fired a sensational hat-trick as Tottenham took control of the race for a Premier League top-four spot with a 4-0 win at Aston Villa.

After Manchester United and Arsenal both lost earlier in the day, Son’s treble and a fine Dejan Kulusevski strike sent Spurs three points in clear in fourth.

It was a fourth win in a row, a seventh from the last nine and makes it difficult to look past them in the battle for Champions League qualification following Antonio Conte’s transformation of this team.

Their deadly front three, with Harry Kane creating two of the goals, sealed the victory, but Spurs also have skipper Hugo Lloris to thank just as much.

After Son’s early opener they were on the rack for most of the first half, with the Frenchman’s heroics keeping a rampant Villa at bay.

Their lethal quality on the break in the second half saw them run away with it and inflict a fourth straight defeat on Steven Gerrard’s side.

Tottenham would have enjoyed watching the results from earlier in the day come in, providing them with a real opportunity to take control of their top-four hopes.

And they could not have dreamed of a better start as they went ahead in just the third minute through Son.

Kane’s drilled shot hit Matty Cash in the midriff and fell perfectly to the South Korean, who fizzed a fine first-time effort into the bottom corner.

But Villa’s response was admirable and Spurs needed their captain Lloris to step up with three big saves.

First he palmed away a low Cash effort, then somehow clawed away Jacob Ramsey’s effort at the near post after the Villa man had weaved into the area before also stopping John McGinn’s swerving shot from distance.

The hosts were all over Spurs like a rash, not letting their visitors breathe, and the chances kept on coming.

Danny Ings shot straight at Lloris from a well-worked free-kick, Ollie Watkins headed over from Phillipe Coutinho’s cross and then saw the Spurs stopper make another save.

The Frenchman was the busiest player on the pitch and had to keep out a Coutinho free-kick at the near post as he ended the first half with seven saves to his name.

Gerrard will have been scratching his head as to how his side were not comfortably in front by the interval, so he probably knew what was coming in the second half.

Just five minutes after the restart Spurs doubled their lead with a moment of real quality.

Kane flicked on Lloris’ long ball into the path of Kulusevski and the Swede did brilliantly to fire a low shot across goal and into the far corner.

Villa had run out of steam and Spurs landed a killer blow in the 66th minute as the Kane-Son partnership delivered again.

It was Kane’s brilliant awareness that set Son clear, knowing exactly where to direct his headed flick, and the South Korean coolly converted past Emi Martinez.

Son completed his hat-trick five minutes later, putting the finishing touches to a brilliant team move.

Kane and Son combined to play Kulusevski in down the right and after a mazy run he cut back to Son, who swept home in style to claim the matchball.

football Sports News


Tottenham moved into the top four of the Premier League with a statement 5-1 win over Newcastle which piles the pressure on north London rivals Arsenal.

After falling behind to Fabian Schar’s first-half free-kick, goals from Ben Davies, Matt Doherty, Son Heung-min, Emerson Royal and Steven Bergwijn moved them above the Gunners in the table on goal difference.

Mikel Arteta’s men will reclaim fourth spot on Monday night if they take a point from their visit to Crystal Palace, but Spurs are firmly in the race for a Champions League place having seemed out of contention a few weeks ago.

Five wins from the last six games, inspired by the front three of Harry Kane, Son and Dejan Kulusevski, has boosted hopes of a return to Europe’s top tier and their fate could come down to their home game with Arsenal, which has yet to be rearranged.

They were simply too good for the Magpies, who have now lost three in a row and sit nine points above the drop zone.

Eddie Howe’s side came and deployed a tactic that Spurs are known to struggle with as they sat deep and denied the hosts space in the final third.

And it worked for the majority of the first half as although Spurs had plenty of the ball they could not create anything clear-cut.

Then things got even better for the visitors as they went ahead in the 39th minute.

Son fouled Joe Willock on the edge of the area and Schar sent a low free-kick around the wall and past Hugo Lloris, who got a hand to it and was disappointed not to keep it out.

But that was as good as it got for Newcastle as Antonio Conte’s men hit back in style.

They got back on level terms quickly as Davies glanced home from Son’s cross after Spurs recycled a corner.

That gave the hosts the platform to go on in the second half and win the game and they took the opportunity with both hands, scoring three goals in 18 minutes.

Doherty put them ahead in the 48th minute, arriving late at the far post to nod home Kane’s superb ball across the face of the goal.

The goal of the game came six minutes later as Spurs’ in-form front three combined in style.

Kane set Kulusevski free down the right, the Swede picked out Son, who controlled and fired into the corner from 10 yards out.

The fourth goal, in the 63rd minute, came from a more unexpected source as Emerson, only playing because of an injury to Sergio Reguilon, poked home at the near post from Doherty’s cross.

Spurs should have made it five, but Son rolled an effort wide after Kane’s 40-yard pass played him in on goal.

They eventually did score a fifth – for a second time in three home games – as Bergwijn scored two minutes after coming on, slotting home having been sent clear by Lucas Moura.

football Sports News


Tottenham boss Antonio Conte says his side have nine cup finals left as they try and earn Champions League qualification.

Spurs kept themselves firmly in the race for the top four with a 3-1 win over West Ham, which came thanks to Son Heung-min’s brace and a Kurt Zouma own goal.

That moved them three points behind Arsenal, who have a game in hand, but have to visit their north London rivals in a game that is yet to be rescheduled.

Having distanced his side from the race for so long, Conte says that top-four qualification is now the only target going into the final run-in after the international break.

“The only way to put pressure on Arsenal is to get three points and to win,” Conte said. “There are nine games to go and for us every game has to be a final.

“At the moment they have a good advantage, especially because they are working with the same coach for many years and they have had many transfer markets with the same coach, maybe at this moment they are more ready than us.

“But in five months we have done a fantastic job with these players and we have reduced the gap with many teams in England.

“Now in our dressing room there is only one target in our mind. I want this to happen because it is right, if you want to improve the mentality it is right to start under pressure.

“For this reason I want to make this target, the race for fourth place. We know the difficulty to reach this target. Tottenham needs to have the ambition to play the best competition.

“In England it is not simple, in this moment there are four teams that are very, very top but if one of these four teams has a struggle and then we have to try and stay there.

“We know there is Arsenal that is taking advantage in the table and they are showing great stability and there is West Ham and (Manchester) United. We want to try to fight and to have this ambition is important to ask all of the players, especially the important players because they are able to take the responsibility to show this message.”

West Ham’s own top-four challenge suffered a terminal blow as they are now six points behind Arsenal, having played two more games.

They got themselves back into the game through Said Benrahma but could not get anything out of it.

Boss David Moyes said: “I am a bit annoyed that I am getting asked it, but also I’m quite pleased because it’s telling me we were seen as a side that was getting seen for top four.

“If somebody had said that to me I would have belly laughed. We have been challenging but if you’d have said that at the start of the season none of you would have said yes.

“It should be put as how well have West Ham done to stay in the race until the last part of season and maybe for the first time they have dropped out of the running for the top four.

“Because in truth we have been in that bracket, but you would never see West Ham being a top-four side.”

football Slides Sports News


Son Heung-min’s double saw Tottenham register a huge win in the race for Champions League qualification as they beat West Ham 3-1.

The South Korean scored twice, having also been involved in Kurt Zouma’s own goal, as Spurs made it four Premier League victories from five to close the gap on fourth-placed Arsenal.

They are now three points behind the Gunners, who have a game in hand but still have to visit their north London rivals in a clash that is yet to be rescheduled.

Antonio Conte’s men, who also climbed above the Hammers, will believe they have the momentum in the battle for the top four as they signed off for the international break in style.

This was a damaging defeat for West Ham, who got on the scoresheet through Said Benrahma, in their own pursuit of the top four as they are six points behind the Gunners having played two games more and winning the Europa League may now be their most realistic route of getting Champions League football next season.

The Hammers’ exertions against Sevilla on Thursday night must have played a part as Tottenham made an impressive start and went ahead in the ninth minute, becoming the beneficiaries of another own goal.

Matt Doherty won the ball high up the field with some good pressing, Harry Kane squared to Son and the last touch came from Kurt Zouma – the sixth time an opposition player has put through his own net against Spurs this season.

West Ham should have levelled almost instantly as Eric Dier was muscled off the ball by Michail Antonio, but he drilled inches wide.

A matter of inches also denied Spurs a second shortly afterwards as a forging run by Dejan Kulusevski, followed by a one-two with Kane, saw him break into the box and his pullback was turned onto a post by Son.

The South Korean finally got his goal as Spurs doubled their lead in the 24th minute as he again paired up with Kane.

Kane’s defence-splitting pass sent him clear and he lashed the ball past Lukasz Fabianski with the aid of a deflection.

Spurs were in total control, but they allowed West Ham back into the game 10 minutes before the break as they were punished for some poor defending.

Doherty conceded a needless corner which was allowed to make its way to the far post where Benrahma was waiting to convert, having lost his marker.

The second half was on a knife edge as both sides had chances in the first 15 minutes.

Kane wasted a massive chance to make it 3-1 as a heavy first touch from Son’s through ball allowed Fabianski to come out and make a save, while Antonio blazed well over at the far post from Aaron Creswell’s cross.

Spurs began to find space on the counter-attack and had Sergio Reguilon any sort of confidence in the penalty area he might have been able to extend the lead, but after two Kane passes put him in the clear, he first elected to go down looking for a penalty and then shot straight at Fabianski.

The England captain was then guilty of missing a golden chance to wrap the game up with 10 minutes remaining.

A clever pass by Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg played him in on goal, but Kane skied his effort when trying to clip the ball over Fabianski.

Spurs finally ensured it would not be a nervy finish as Son killed the game in the 88th minute, latching onto Kane’s header and converting with ease for the pair’s 39th goal combination in the Premier League.

football Slides Sports News


Cristiano Ronaldo produced a hat-trick to lift Manchester United into fourth place and himself top of FIFA’s all-time scorers’ list as Tottenham Hotspur were beaten in a 3-2 thriller at Old Trafford.

Ronaldo arrowed in a stunning long-range shot to give the hosts a 12th-minute lead.

Harry Kane’s penalty drew Spurs level on 35 minutes after Alex Telles had handled Dejan Kulusevski’s cross.

Ronaldo restored Man Utd’s lead three minutes later, slotting in Jadon Sancho’s pass following a sweeping counter-attack.

Spurs levelled for a second time on 72 minutes when Sergio Reguilon’s cross was turned into his own net by Harry Maguire.

But with eight minutes remaining, Ronaldo superbly headed in a Telles centre to surpass the all-time goals record with his 807th career strike for club and country.

It was also his second Premier League hat-trick, more than 14 years after his first at home to Newcastle United in January 2008.

A first win in three lifts Man Utd to fourth with 50 points.

Spurs are five points back in seventh, having played two matches fewer.

football Slides Sports News


Harry Kane scored twice as Tottenham Hotspur moved three points outside the top four with their biggest win of the season, beating struggling Everton 5-0.

Spurs took the lead after 14 minutes when Ryan Sessegnon’s low cross was turned in to his own net by Michael Keane.

Son Heung-min made it 2-0 less than three minutes later, collecting Dejan Kulusevski’s slipped pass and firing past Jordan Pickford.

Kane ran clean through on goal to score from Matt Doherty’s pass on 37 minutes, and half-time substitute Sergio Reguilon swept home Spurs’ fourth less than a minute after his introduction.

Kane made it 5-0 in the 55th minute with a brilliant angled volley from Doherty’s long pass, and Pickford had to make a smart save to stop substitute Steven Bergwijn adding a sixth.

Spurs stay seventh but now have 45 points. A third straight defeat means Everton stay 17th on 22 points, one point above the relegation zone.