Premier League: Tottenham beat West Ham 3 – 2

Harry kane scores for Tottenham
Harry kane scores for Tottenham

In-form striker Harry Kane scored twice as 10-man Tottenham survived a late fightback from West Ham to move up to third in the Premier League.

Kane’s header and low strike gave the visitors a 2-0 half-time lead before midfielder Christian Eriksen fired home the third in the 60th minute.

The Hammers had been disjointed and jaded to that point, but five minutes later Mexico forward Javier Hernandez nodded in from close range.

Tottenham wing-back Serge Aurier was then shown a second yellow card 20 minutes from time for a late tackle on Andy Carroll.

West Ham made their numerical advantage count when Cheikhou Kouyate powered in a magnificent cross from substitute Arthur Masuaku with three minutes left.

However, the Hammers – who are 17th – failed to test the Spurs goal again as they lost for the fourth time in the league this season.

“Sometimes it is good to suffer a bit as it means you are alive,” said Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino after the game.

“We suffered but we fought. We played well and deserved to win the game.

“It means more than three points. We played for our pride and the emption of our fans and I’m happy for my players.”

Spurs boss Pochettino treated his players to a steak dinner this week in what was billed as a team-bonding exercise before this match.

The Argentine said: “You need time to create a good dynamic, not only tactics but outside too.”

That spirit of togetherness has been fostered since Pochettino’s arrival in 2014, and three of his key players with a close bond off the pitch once again displayed their connection on it.

Spurs’ attacking triumvirate of Eriksen, Kane and Dele Alli is arguably the most potent in England. Last season, both Eriksen and Alli provided nine assists for Kane – the Premier League’s joint-highest assist rate for a team-mate – and Eriksen provided seven for Alli.

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The trio were at it again at London Stadium.

They combined for the opener when Carroll inadvertently played the ball to Eriksen in the middle. The Dane found Alli, who in turn found the head of his England team-mate. Kane, under no pressure, nodded in for his fifth goal in his past four appearances.

That became six in four a few moments later. After Carroll failed to win an aerial contest with Jan Vertonghen, Eriksen’s brilliant flick released Kane, who played in Alli. The midfielder’s shot was blocked by Joe Hart, but his predatory colleague followed up.

After the break, Eriksen joined them on the scoresheet with a low, 12-yard strike after Kane’s curling free-kick came off the foot of the post.

Hammers fall short of great fightback

Home fans chanted “sacked in the morning” at manager Slaven Bilic when his side trailed 3-0, and while his approval rating may have improved after a rousing comeback, his team remain near the foot of the table.

The Hammers went into the match having won three of the past four home league meetings with Spurs, but losing winger Michail Antonio to injury coupled with Kane’s two first-half strikes left a fourth in five looking unlikely.

Even after Hernandez headed in, it appeared little more than a consolation until Aurier was deservedly sent off for his ill-judged tackle on Carroll.

The odds on West Ham completing a great comeback shortened when Kouyate headed in, however a late melee in the closing seconds sucked the impetus out of West Ham.

After good recent performances, this was another step back for Bilic and his team.

Man of the match – Harry Kane (Tottenham)

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