Kane’s the hero again as Spurs come from behind to beat Arsenal in north London derby
14:44 07 February 2015
PA Wire/Press Association Images
Harry Kane continued his remarkable season with two goals in his first north London derby as Tottenham came from behind to beat Arsenal 2-1 at White Hart Lane.
Mesut Ozil gave the Gunners an 11th-minute lead but Spurs went on to dominate the game – both in terms of possession and shots on goal.
Unlike last year’s derby at the Lane, when the hosts lost 1-0 after a second-minute Tomas Rosicky strike, Tottenham hit back in the 55th minute through their man of the moment, boyhood Spurs fan Kane.
And, with 85 minutes on the clock, Kane rose to head home from Nabil Bentaleb’s cross, taking his tally to 22 goals for the season and striking a major blow in the battle for Champions League qualification.
Spurs moved above Arsenal into fourth place at the final whistle, level on points with third-placed Manchester United – although they must now wait for the Premier League’s other fixtures
Mauricio Pochettino made two changes to the Spurs side that had triumphed 3-0 at West Brom the previous weekend, with Eric Dier getting the nod instead of Federico Fazio and Bentaleb being instantly reinstated on his return from the African Cup of Nations.
Meanwhile, Arsene Wenger swapped Theo Walcott for Danny Welbeck, while Alexis Sanchez missed out on the squad altogether.
Spurs had the first chance as Kane drew a low save from David Ospina. But, having struck early in the same fixture last year, the Gunners grabbed an 11th-minute opener.
Jan Vertonghen dived into a challenge on the halfway line and Welbeck beat Danny Rose for pace down the right before squaring for Olivier Giroud. It was unclear whether the Frenchman tried to shoot or find Mesut Ozil but, either way, he sent the ball on to the unmarked and marginally offside German, who side-footed a volleyed finish past Hugo Lloris.
It was all Tottenham for the rest of the half though. Rose’s low shot was saved and the left-back then fired the ball in front of the goalmouth, but none of the Spurs players were on hand to finish.
Ryan Mason forced Ospina into another save with a 25-yard effort, and Bentaleb and Kane both dragged shots wide from outside the box - but the Lilywhites were unable to find an equaliser before the break.
They ended the first period having had 63 per cent of the possession and 11 shots – three of them on target. The Gunners, meanwhile, had only managed two shots and one on target, but that early Ozil strike was all that mattered at that stage.
Cazorla tested Lloris with a low 20-yard effort at the start of the second half but Tottenham scored their deserved equaliser 10 minutes after the break as a corner made it through to Kane, who finished at the far post.
The momentum was with Spurs, who turned up the pressure. Rose created panic with two low crosses, the increasingly influential Christian Eriksen’s shot from the edge of the box was blocked and Mousa Dembele’s shot was saved by Ospina, with the ball agonisingly running away from Kane at the far post.
Arsenal had two quickfire chances themselves, with Welbeck seeing his curling effort well saved by the diving Lloris before Laurent Koscielny headed straight at Lloris from the ensuing corner.
But back came Spurs, with Dier’s header from a corner being cleared out to Mason, who volleyed at Ospina from 30 yards. Bentaleb then arrowed a low strike towards the bottom right corner, but Ospina got down to save before getting up and blocking Kane’s follow-up.
It seemed that honours would be shared but, with just five minutes of normal time left, Tottenham grabbed another late winner – and Kane was the hero once again, leaping to meet Bentaleb’s cross from the left and directing his header back across goal into the net.
Gunners substitute Tomas Rosicky fired at Lloris from just outside the box before the end, but Tottenham held on for a vital victory, having ended up with 23 shots to Arsenal’s eight.
Tottenham: Lloris, Walker, Dier, Vertonghen, Rose, Mason, Bentaleb, Lamela (Stambouli 90), Dembele (Chadli 74), Eriksen, Kane
Arsenal: Ospina, Bellerin, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal, Ramsey, Coquelin (Akpom 89), Welbeck (Walcott 78), Cazorla (Rosicky 68), Ozil, Giroud