Kane goal claim turned down as Erik­sen keeps Spurs on course

The Sunday Telegraph - Sport - - Premier League -

but Harry said it touched his shoul­der. But in the end the most im­por­tant thing was three mas­sive points for us, that put us in a good po­si­tion in the ta­ble to achieve our goal and fin­ish in the top four.”

Spurs will also have one eye on now try­ing to nick sec­ond place ahead of Liver­pool and Manch­ester United over the re­main­ing weeks of the sea­son.

Po­chet­tino added: “First of all, we want to fin­ish in the top four for a third sea­son in a row but, then, of course, it would be bet­ter to fin­ish sec­ond than third or fourth.”

This was not a vin­tage per­for­mance by any means from Po­chet­tino’s team, but they dug in and saw off a spir­ited ef­fort from a Stoke City team fight­ing what looks to be a los­ing bat­tle to avoid rel­e­ga­tion.

Tot­ten­ham took the lead seven min­utes af­ter the break. Bruno Martins Indi played the ball out of de­fence straight to Mousa Dem­bele, who picked out Dele Alli and he set up Erik­sen to sweep a shot into the net.

The noisy home faith­ful fell silent, clearly fear­ing the heav­ens could open, but Stoke nicked an un­likely equaliser five min­utes later thanks to an­other howler from goal­keeper Hugo Lloris. Hav­ing gifted Chelsea a goal the pre­vi­ous week, Llofrom ris ran from his line to try to cut out a Xher­dan Shaqiri pass.

But the French­man could only send his clear­ance into Mame Bi­ram Diouf, who man­aged to stay up­right long enough to roll the ball into the net. Diouf then re­quired treat­ment, but was able to con­tinue and squan­dered a su­perb chance to equalise again af­ter Tot­ten­ham had re­gained the lead. Whether Erik­sen’s bril­liant de­liv­ery had gone straight in may have been the sub­ject of a re­view, but there was no de­bat­ing that Diouf should have done bet­ter near the end.

The striker found him­self with time and space in­side the Tot­ten­ham penalty area, but side-footed the ball straight to Jan Ver­tonghen – much to the anger of the Stoke sup­port­ers, who greeted the fact Diouf was later named man of the match with a mix­ture of laughs and jeers.

Paul Lam­bert, the Stoke man­ager, said: “We need three wins. If we play like that we will get them.”

Dou­ble de­light: Chris­tian Erik­sen scored twice to send Spurs level with Liver­pool

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