Premier League
Southampton1Tottenham4

Southampton 1-4 Tottenham Hotspur

Dele Alli
Dele Alli scored his 15th goal in 50 league games for Tottenham

Dele Alli scored twice as Tottenham maintained their challenge for a Champions League spot with victory over 10-man Southampton.

Saints took the lead in the second minute when defender Virgil van Dijk demonstrated his aerial threat by nodding in James Ward-Prowse's free-kick.

The visitors were level just before midway in the half when Alli out-jumped Van Dijk to direct Moussa Sissoko's deflected cross past keeper Fraser Forster.

Shortly after the break, Harry Kane ended his run of three league games without a goal when he headed in from Christian Eriksen's corner in the 52nd minute.

And the England forward should have extended his side's advantage moments later when Southampton's Nathan Redmond brought down Alli in the area to concede a penalty and earn a red card. However Kane fired the spot-kick over the bar.

The sending off changed the complexion of the match as Spurs took advantage of the extra space, with both substitute Son Heung-Min and Alli firing in low strikes to put gloss on the win.

Spurs remain in fifth spot, but are now only a point behind fourth-place Arsenal.

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Tottenham in good position - Pochettino

Was it a red card?

There was confusion on social media as to whether Redmond's foul on Alli warranted a red card in the 57th minute.

The Saints midfielder pulled back his Spurs counterpart in the area which prompted referee Mike Dean to point to the spot. The official then, after a delay, sent the England Under-21 international off.

Under new rules, had Redmond tried to win the ball with a tackle he would have received just a caution. However, the pull meant it was both a penalty and red card offence.

Kane & Alli send message to rivals

Harry Kane
Harry Kane stares at the loose turf after firing his second-half spot-kick over the bar

The England internationals scored 35 league goals between them last season as Spurs finished third - and they are on course to emulate that feat this campaign.

Alli led the way against what was the third meanest defence in the league coming into the match.

He brought Spurs back into the contest with a majestic leap above 6ft 4in Van Dijk to nod Sissoko's delivery past Forster. And showed composure to fire past the England keeper in the closing minutes.

Kane had the second fewest touches of all outfield players in the first half, but after the break the 23-year-old scored with his first effort on target when he headed in from Eriksen's set-piece in the 52nd minute.

He should have added his ninth league goal of the season soon after but his standing foot slipped as he fired over from the penalty spot.

After the match, Kane suggested a brand new square of turf on the penalty spot might have been the cause for his miss.

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Man of the match - Dele Alli (Tottenham)

Dele Alli
Dele Alli scored twice from three efforts - that is now three goals in two games for the attacking midfielder

'Important for us to keep fighting'

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino: "It was a difficult game from the start. It was hard to settle but we prepared in the way we wanted to in order to play against Southampton.

"It was unlucky for us to concede early in the first half but after 10-15 minutes we started to come into the game and push a little harder. We certainly deserved the victory.

"It was important for Kane and Alli as brilliant offensive players to score goals and I am very pleased with their performances.

"All the top sides have won over the festive period so it was important for us to keep fighting and after that I think we are in a good position."

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Red card ended game for Saints - Puel

Southampton manager Claude Puel: "With the red card it was too difficult to come back and we conceded another two goals. The red card is the end of the game for us.

"The two players went for the ball, I don't know I didn't see the action. This gave Spurs the opportunity to win the game."

New Spurs record

  • Spurs are unbeaten in their last five visits to St Mary's, with four wins and a draw.
  • Spurs' win means they have claimed 71 points in 2016, a new club record in the Premier League (surpassing their haul of 70 in 2013).
  • This is the first time that Southampton have conceded four goals in a Premier League home game since November 1998 (1-4 v Aston Villa).
  • There have been 10 comeback wins in the Premier League in December 2016 - the last month to see more was December 2013 (12).

What's next?

Southampton are at home to West Brom on Saturday (15:00 GMT) and Tottenham are at Watford on New Year's Day (13:30 GMT).

Line-ups

Southampton

  • 1Forster
  • 2Cédric Soares
  • 6José Fonte
  • 17van Dijk
  • 21Bertrand
  • 16Ward-Prowse
  • 14Romeu
  • 8DavisSubstituted forHøjbjergat 72'minutes
  • 22RedmondBooked at 57mins
  • 9RodriguezSubstituted forLongat 72'minutesBooked at 90mins
  • 19BoufalSubstituted forTadicat 72'minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Yoshida
  • 7Long
  • 11Tadic
  • 15Martina
  • 18Reed
  • 23Højbjerg
  • 28Taylor

Tottenham

  • 1Lloris
  • 2WalkerBooked at 55mins
  • 15Dier
  • 5VertonghenBooked at 90mins
  • 3RoseBooked at 60mins
  • 19DembéléBooked at 15minsSubstituted forWinksat 82'minutes
  • 12Wanyama
  • 17SissokoSubstituted forSon Heung-Minat 74'minutes
  • 20Alli
  • 23Eriksen
  • 10KaneSubstituted forJanssenat 89'minutes

Substitutes

  • 7Son Heung-Min
  • 9Janssen
  • 13Vorm
  • 14Nkoudou
  • 27Wimmer
  • 29Winks
  • 33Davies
Referee:
Mike Dean
Attendance:
31,853

Match Stats

Home TeamSouthamptonAway TeamTottenham
Possession
Home34%
Away66%
Shots
Home9
Away17
Shots on Target
Home2
Away5
Corners
Home2
Away10
Fouls
Home7
Away16

Live Text

Match ends, Southampton 1, Tottenham Hotspur 4.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Southampton 1, Tottenham Hotspur 4.

Foul by Victor Wanyama (Tottenham Hotspur).

Dusan Tadic (Southampton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Booking

Jan Vertonghen (Tottenham Hotspur) is shown the yellow card.

Booking

Shane Long (Southampton) is shown the yellow card.

Jan Vertonghen (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Shane Long (Southampton).

Substitution

Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Vincent Janssen replaces Harry Kane.

Foul by Kyle Walker (Tottenham Hotspur).

Ryan Bertrand (Southampton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Goal!

Goal! Southampton 1, Tottenham Hotspur 4. Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from the left side of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Danny Rose.

Foul by Victor Wanyama (Tottenham Hotspur).

Dusan Tadic (Southampton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Goal!

Goal! Southampton 1, Tottenham Hotspur 3. Son Heung-Min (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from the left side of the box to the bottom right corner.

Offside, Southampton. Cédric Soares tries a through ball, but Shane Long is caught offside.

Substitution

Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Harry Winks replaces Mousa Dembélé.

Attempt blocked. Shane Long (Southampton) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Oriol Romeu.

Attempt saved. Pierre-Emile Højbjerg (Southampton) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Hand ball by Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur).

Corner, Tottenham Hotspur. Conceded by Virgil van Dijk.

Attempt blocked. Christian Eriksen (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Kyle Walker.

Substitution

Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Son Heung-Min replaces Moussa Sissoko.

Attempt missed. Danny Rose (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Christian Eriksen.

Substitution

Substitution, Southampton. Shane Long replaces Jay Rodriguez.

Substitution

Substitution, Southampton. Dusan Tadic replaces Sofiane Boufal.

Substitution

Substitution, Southampton. Pierre-Emile Højbjerg replaces Steven Davis.

Christian Eriksen (Tottenham Hotspur) hits the bar with a right footed shot from the centre of the box.

Attempt blocked. Kyle Walker (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Christian Eriksen.

Corner, Tottenham Hotspur. Conceded by Fraser Forster.

Attempt saved. Victor Wanyama (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Christian Eriksen.

Foul by Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur).

José Fonte (Southampton) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Corner, Southampton. Conceded by Mousa Dembélé.

Attempt blocked. Cédric Soares (Southampton) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Booking

Danny Rose (Tottenham Hotspur) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Danny Rose (Tottenham Hotspur).

Cédric Soares (Southampton) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Mousa Dembélé (Tottenham Hotspur).

Cédric Soares (Southampton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

goal