LONDON – Dele Alli scored twice to deny Chelsea an historic win record and send Tottenham back into the top four with a 2-0 victory over their fierce London rivals.
The midfielder nodded home two crosses from Christian Eriksen – both at the back post – to stop the Blues winning for a top-flight record 14th consecutive game.
The league leaders went close through Eden Hazard in the first half and Diego Costa in the second, but Spurs have cut Chelsea’s lead at the top to five points and opened up the title race.
Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino decided to match Chelsea like-for-like with wing-backs, and Kyle Walker and Danny Rose won the battle against Victor Moses and Marcos Alonso, who have been so instrumental to Antonio Conte’s successful system.
Hazard should have fired the Blues in front after just five minutes when he beat the offside trap and was played through one-on-one with Hugo Lloris, but he shot wide of the far post.
Walker and Rose were menacing on either flank and Pedro was lucky to escape with just a yellow card when he came in late on the Spurs left-back, stirring back up some resentment from the ‘Battle of the Bridge’ last season.
Pedro and Costa then exchanged heated words after Costa failed to play the forward into a shooting position, as Chelsea grew frustrated at being unable to threaten the Tottenham’s goal.
And Spurs had a deserved breakthrough on the stroke of the interval when Walker played in Eriksen to cross for Alli to nod home for the fourth consecutive game.
Chelsea came firing out of the traps in the second half and could have equalised through either Costa, who forced Lloris to tip wide from long range, or Hazard, who missed a close-range header at the far post.
But Alli made no mistake and doubled Spurs’ lead on 54 minutes when Eriksen picked out another well-timee run into the box, and he headed beyond Thibaut Courtois into the far corner – his third brace in as many matches.
Chelsea looked forlorn and bewildered, as Pedro found space but headed an Alonso cross feebly at Lloris, and Conte threw on Willian, Cesc Fabregas and Michy Batshuayi.
But Tottenham held on for a memorable, fifth straight win to move third in the Premier League and just two points behind second-place Liverpool.
Tottenham: Lloris (7), Dier (7), Alderweireld (7), Vertonghen (7); Walker (8), Wanyama (7), Dembele (7), Rose (8), Alli (9), Eriksen (8), Kane (7)
Subsused: Winks (6), Sissoko (5), Son (5)
Chelsea: Courtois (6), Cahill (6), Luiz (7), Azpilicueta (6); Moses (6), Kante (7), Matic (6), Alonso (6); Pedro (7), Costa (6), Hazard (7)
Even Barcelona's stellar cast of millionaires were star-struck on Monday by a visit from Canadian pop sensation Justin Bieber to the Spanish champions training ground.
Bieber, who is set to perform ...
Ghana-born Italian international Mario Balotelli, he of those crazy haircuts and wild life-style, is said to have massive regrets for choosing the European nation over his native country Ghana.
By Thomas ...
BULAWAYO - Highlanders recorded their second victory of the season after beating Hwange 1-nil in a week three fixture played at Barbourfields stadium in Bulawayo Saturday afternoon.
Webster Chingodza rose to ...
KAIZER Chief’s midfielder Willard Katsande will undergo a scan on his abdominal area, after sustaining an injury against Chippa United at the Peter Mokaba Stadium on Saturday evening.
The Zimbabwe international ...
The 47-year-old music mogul has decided to remove himself from the sites after explaining on his now-deleted Instagram page that he had grown tired of the “c**ning and buffooning” that exists within the hip-hop world. […]
Jennifer Lopez claims her relationship with rapper Drake is strictly professional. In a new interview, the Shades Of Blue actress avoided questions about their rumoured romance and instead, confirmed they have collaborated on a new […]
BUDAPEST – Marcelo Cake-Baly came to study in Hungary from wartorn Guinea-Bissau in 1976, and has been working as a tram driver in Budapest for over a decade despite being a trained economist. Now, at the […]
Drake has upset his fans in the UK after postponing the opening dates of his upcoming tour. The first three dates of the One Dance rapper’s 35-date trek have been unexpectedly pushed back, prompting fans […]