Premier League
TottenhamTottenham Hotspur2ArsenalArsenal0

Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 Arsenal

By Phil McNultyChief football writer at White Hart Lane
harry Kane
Harry Kane has scored in five successive Premier League meetings with Arsenal, whose academy he was part of

Tottenham ensured they remained just four points behind Premier League leaders Chelsea, and confirmed they would finish above arch-rivals Arsenal for the first time since 1994-95, with an impressive north London derby win at White Hart Lane.

Chelsea's 3-0 victory at Everton put the pressure on Spurs - but they responded in style with a ninth successive league win to continue their best sequence since October 1960, when they won 13 games in a row.

The match was decided with two goals in just over a minute, Dele Alli scoring his 21st goal for Spurs this season with a close-range finish in the 55th minute before Harry Kane netted from the spot after he was fouled by Gabriel.

Arsenal, whose top-four hopes are in serious jeopardy as they remain six points behind fourth-placed Manchester City with a game in hand, were only spared a heavy defeat in the last derby at this stadium in its current incarnation by a magnificent display from keeper Petr Cech.

Premier League table

Spurs refuse to be 'Spursy'

Spurs might have been forgiven for entering this game with an air of resignation after Chelsea restored their lead - albeit temporarily - to seven points with victory at Everton.

It took them 45 minutes to perhaps clear their heads, although they had the best chances of the first half through Alli's header and Christian Eriksen's side-foot effort against the bar, before they demonstrated the quality and development that has characterised their season.

Manager Mauricio Pochettino clearly reminded his players of what might still be at stake at half-time, and they emerged at full throttle and maximum physicality to overpower Arsenal and win the game with that quick-fire one-two.

Shot map
Tottenham registered 11 shots on target (left) to Arsenal's four.

It demonstrated that, while the odds may be against them, Spurs will chase Chelsea to the wire waiting for a slip, no matter how unlikely that might be given Antonio Conte's side have a favourable run-in.

In the past, even as recently as last season, they have been given the tag of being "Spursy" - falling over when it mattered, even finishing behind Arsenal last season after a 5-1 loss at relegated Newcastle United on the final day of the campaign.

No such accusations can be levelled at this team.

Spurs travel to West Ham United on Friday, when they could reduce the gap to one point before Chelsea face Middlesbrough at home the following Monday, before welcoming Manchester United to White Hart Lane.

Given their form and strength, it is hard to see Pochettino's side losing any game - they look like a side that will keep Chelsea right on their toes until the final phase of this season.

Tottenham's 2016-17 run-in
Fri, 5 MayWest Ham (A)
Sun, 14 MayMan Utd (H)
Thu, 18 MayLeicester (A)
Sun, 21 MayHull (A)
Chelsea's 2016-17 run-in
Mon, 8 MayMiddlesbrough (H)
Fri, 12 MayWest Brom (A)
Mon, 15 MayWatford (H)
Sun, 21 MaySunderland (H)
Sat, 27 MayArsenal (FA Cup final)

Pochettino outflanks Wenger

Pochettino looks to be establishing the platform for a golden future at White Hart Lane, while Arsenal counterpart Arsene Wenger is trying desperately to recreate the glories of the past.

Pochettino has a young, powerful, talented team with a strong English foundation, while Wenger presides over an Arsenal group that is a pale shadow of those of even recent vintage that may not even offer the traditional place in the Champions League to console him.

The Gunners look flimsy and lacking in presence, and if Wenger stays at Emirates Stadium, which looks likely, he faces a formidable rebuilding task.

Tottenham 2-0 Arsenal: 'Complete performance' delights Mauricio Pochettino

Pochettino has moved Spurs into a position where quality additions and increased depth to an outstanding first XI will be his priority, but so many of the pieces are already in place.

The irony, of course, is Arsenal are the club in north London with the chance of tangible success after reaching the FA Cup final - a task beyond Spurs as they lost to Chelsea in the semi-finals.

But, on the evidence of this game, and over the season, it is Spurs who can look forward with greater optimism.

Tottenham fans
Tottenham's fans took delight in Wenger's discomfort

Wanyama overshadows Xhaka

Spurs and Arsenal moved to add power and stability to their midfield in the summer with the signings of Victor Wanyama and Granit Xhaka respectively.

There is no question who got the better deal.

Wanyama, an £11m buy from Southampton, stamped his presence all over midfield here with his imposing frame and ball-winning ability.

Xhaka, in contrast, was little more than a liability with his poor challenges and wayward distribution, again looking well short of the quality expected from a player bought for in the region of £30m.

It was a midfield battle that was this match in microcosm. Spurs were simply too good for Arsenal.

Man of the match - Victor Wanyama

Victor Wanyama
Wanayama (right) gained possession 13 times, six more than any other player managed

What they said

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino: "To be above Arsenal for the first time in 22 years is fantastic for our fans. It is fantastic for us too, but we want to win the title.

"It was a very important game and it was a complete performance. We were better in the second half, putting on more pressure and creating more chances. The race for the title is down to four points and we will see what will happen."

Tottenham 2-0 Arsenal: Spurs deserved to win - Arsene Wenger

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger: "We did lose the game in a very quick space of time, and after that it took us time to recover.

"Spurs deserved to win, we have to accept that and analyse it. It is very disappointing, but the target at the beginning of the season is not to finish above Spurs, it is to win the league.

"They deserve it. We have a cup final to play, we have to fight for a place back in the top four.

"We couldn't afford to lose the game. We didn't score, we didn't score at Palace or West Brom. We have to play more and create more than we did."

Nine on the bounce for Tottenham

  • Tottenham have won nine consecutive league games for the first time since October 1960, when they won 13 in a row.
  • Kane is Tottenham's top scorer in Premier League north London derbies with six, overtaking Gareth Bale on five.
  • Kane has 27 goals in all competitions this season - only Manchester United's Zlatan Ibrahimovic (28) and Manchester City's Sergio Aguero (31) have scored more for Premier League teams this season.
  • Kane has only two goals in eight Premier League games against the other sides in the top six this season, but both goals have come against Arsenal.
  • Only Hull (10) have conceded more penalty goals than Arsenal (nine) in the Premier League this season.
  • This is now the highest-scoring Premier League fixture of all time, seeing 141 goals scored (80 for Arsenal, 61 for Spurs).
  • The Gunners have not won any of their past six league games against Spurs (drawing four and losing two), their longest winless run against them.

What's next

Tottenham travel to West Ham on Friday while Arsenal take on Manchester United at Emirates Stadium on Sunday.

Line-ups

Tottenham

  • 1Lloris
  • 16TrippierSubstituted forWalkerat 88'minutes
  • 4Alderweireld
  • 5Vertonghen
  • 33Davies
  • 15Dier
  • 12Wanyama
  • 23Eriksen
  • 20AlliSubstituted forSissokoat 90+1'minutes
  • 7Son Heung-MinSubstituted forDembéléat 79'minutes
  • 10KaneBooked at 72mins

Substitutes

  • 2Walker
  • 9Janssen
  • 13Vorm
  • 14Nkoudou
  • 17Sissoko
  • 19Dembélé
  • 27Wimmer

Arsenal

  • 33Cech
  • 5GabrielBooked at 70minsSubstituted forBellerínat 75'minutes
  • 6Koscielny
  • 18MonrealBooked at 76mins
  • 15Oxlade-Chamberlain
  • 8Ramsey
  • 29XhakaSubstituted forWelbeckat 65'minutes
  • 3Gibbs
  • 11Özil
  • 7Sánchez
  • 12GiroudBooked at 73minsSubstituted forWalcottat 81'minutes

Substitutes

  • 13Ospina
  • 14Walcott
  • 16Holding
  • 17Iwobi
  • 23Welbeck
  • 24Bellerín
  • 34Coquelin
Referee:
Michael Oliver
Attendance:
31,811

Match Stats

Home TeamTottenhamAway TeamArsenal
Possession
Home51%
Away49%
Shots
Home20
Away12
Shots on Target
Home11
Away4
Corners
Home14
Away5
Fouls
Home7
Away15

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Tottenham Hotspur 2, Arsenal 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Tottenham Hotspur 2, Arsenal 0.

  3. Substitution

    Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Moussa Sissoko replaces Dele Alli.

  4. Post update

    Foul by Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur).

  5. Post update

    Mesut Özil (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  6. Substitution

    Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Kyle Walker replaces Kieran Trippier.

  7. Post update

    Attempt saved. Theo Walcott (Arsenal) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Aaron Ramsey.

  8. Post update

    Offside, Arsenal. Mesut Özil tries a through ball, but Theo Walcott is caught offside.

  9. Post update

    Foul by Mousa Dembélé (Tottenham Hotspur).

  10. Post update

    Danny Welbeck (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  11. Substitution

    Substitution, Arsenal. Theo Walcott replaces Olivier Giroud.

  12. Post update

    Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  13. Post update

    Foul by Héctor Bellerín (Arsenal).

  14. Post update

    Attempt saved. Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Kieran Trippier with a headed pass.

  15. Substitution

    Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Mousa Dembélé replaces Son Heung-Min.

  16. Post update

    Attempt saved. Toby Alderweireld (Tottenham Hotspur) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Christian Eriksen with a cross.

  17. Post update

    Corner, Tottenham Hotspur. Conceded by Petr Cech.

  18. Post update

    Attempt saved. Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Victor Wanyama with a through ball.

  19. Booking

    Nacho Monreal (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  20. Post update

    Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Comments

Join the conversation

These comments are now closed.

384 comments

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Chelsea34263572294381
2Tottenham34238371224977
3Liverpool34199670422866
4Man City34199665372866
5Man Utd341714351252665
6Arsenal33186964422260
7Everton351610960402058
8West Brom34128143943-444
9Southampton33118143944-541
10Bournemouth35118165063-1341
11Leicester34117164254-1240
12Stoke351010153750-1340
13Watford33117153754-1740
14Burnley35116183549-1439
15West Ham35109164459-1539
16Crystal Palace35115194656-1038
17Hull3597193667-3134
18Swansea3595214069-2932
19Middlesbrough35513172645-1928
20Sunderland3456232660-3421
View full Premier League table

Top Stories

Explore the BBC