Newcastle 1-3 Spurs
Report from St James' Park
19 April 2015|Tottenham Hotspur
Nacer Chadli, Christian Eriksen and Harry Kane scored the goals as we returned to winning ways at St James' Park on Sunday.
Determined to put right performances against Burnley and Villa, the lads controlled the game for long periods and recovered from an early setback in the second half to register win number 17 of the Premier League campaign.
Kane put the issue beyond doubt in added time with another landmark goal.
Sent clear by Erik Lamela, the striker buried his 30th goal in all competitions and 20th in the Premier League.
He becomes the first Spur to hit 30 since Gary Lineker in 1991-92 and the first home-grown player to reach the 20-goal mark in league action since Mark Falco 30 years ago.
More importantly - and as he recognised afterwards - it got the team back to winning ways.
Jan Vertonghen returned to skipper the side as Mauricio Pochettino made three changes to the team that was defeated by Villa last weekend. Paulinho replaced Ryan Mason to anchor the midfield with Nabil Bentaleb whilst on the wing, Erik Lamela started on the right with Andros Townsend dropping to the bench.
Despite the sunshine, there was a stiff breeze in the North East as we got underway. We controlled the early possession and almost broke the deadlock when Harry Kane brilliantly switched the play to Danny Rose who whipped in a dangerous cross that was scrambled clear.
Hugo Lloris continues his recovery from a knee injury meaning Michel Vorm kept his place between the sticks and he was called into action early on as he did well to block a shot from Ayoze Perez after fine work from Yoan Gouffran.
Neither goalkeeper was particularly tested in a gentle opening 30 minutes before any sense of tranquility was shattered by a moment of brilliance from Chadli. Picking up possession from Paulinho, he shifted the ball onto his left foot to wrong-foot two Newcastle defenders before dipping a shot from 25 yards past Tim Krul and into the bottom corner - his ninth Premier League strike this term and 11th in all competitions.
Kane looked hungry for his 30th goal of the season and was a whisker away from getting it just before the interval. Bentaleb created space with a brilliant bit of skill as we attacked down the right. Chadli slipped in Kane who tried to surprise Krul with an early shot from a tight angle but the big goalkeeper did well to beat his effort away.
The second half got underway in disastrous fashion as the home side forced a leveller within 20 seconds of the restart. Chadli surrendered possession on the left which allowed Perez to drive into our box with the ball eventually rolling into the path of Jack Colback who kept his cool to slot past Vorm.
It was a sucker punch and gave the home side a lift but crucially we would not have to wait long to recapture our lead. Eriksen was fouled by Colback near the corner of the box on the left and the Dane picked himself up to take it. It was the sort of delivery that defenders dread and strikers long for though it evaded everyone as it flashed across the face of goal and into the far corner of the net - taking him into double-figures in the Premier League.
We were cooking on gas now and almost sealed it shortly after when Chadli galloped down the left and crossed for Bentaleb who headed narrowly over.
The left flank was becoming a fruitful avenue for us with Chadli finding acres of space and it was from a corner on that side that Kane came closer to his 30th. Paulinho whipped a ball in that Kane met on the volley from six yards, however Krul had other ideas as he dived low to brilliantly deny him.
A goal was the only thing missing from his second half display as he used his frame to great effect to hold the ball up and bring others into play. Our next chance fell to him too as Bentaleb scooped a ball into his path though just as Kane went to pull the trigger he slipped and scuffed his effort out for a goal-kick.
Newcastle were on the ropes as Bentaleb put Chadli through one on one but again Krul saved the home side with a fine piece of goalkeeping.
Kane was next to test Krul with a venomous shot from distance but still that third goal seemed just out of our grasp.
The wait ended as we ticked into three minutes of added time. Lamela led the break from a Newcastle set-piece and timed his pass to perfection to release Kane in the left channel, and he wasn't to be denied this time with a clinical one-on-one finish.
Mauricio Pochettino said
"It was a very important win to recover our good feeling after the last two games,” said Mauricio.
“It was difficult after the last match against Aston Villa but we showed we’re still alive. We played well.
“We conceded another early goal in the second half but we were brave and we played our best football after they scored.
“Maybe it was difficult in the mind to concede another early goal against Newcastle but we responded well and I’m pleased.
“We now have a big game against Southampton and it’s important to feel that we can stay high up in the table.”
Newcastle: Krul, Coloccini (c), Taylor, Williamson, Anita (Armstrong 75), Gouffran (Obertan 45), Colback, Perez, Cabella, Janmaat, Abeid (Ameobi 45). Subs not used: Riviere, Kemen, Woodman, Sterry.
Spurs: Vorm, Dier, Fazio, Vertonghen (c), Rose (Davies 81); Bentaleb, Paulinho (Mason, 89), Chadli (Dembele, 78), Eriksen, Lamela; Kane. Subs not used: Friedel, Yedlin, Townsend, Soldado.
Goals: Newcastle - Colback (46). Spurs - Chadli (30), Eriksen (53), Kane (90+1).
Yellow cards: Newcastle - Colback (40) Cabella (63). Spurs - Paulinho (42) Lamela (45) Vertonghen (62), Bentaleb.
Referee: Kevin Friend.