Lively Son on song again for Spurs as hosts edge Crystal Palace
Tottenham’s 1-0 win over fellow Londoners Crystal Palace didn’t tell the whole story, as the scoreline would have been more if not for the heroics of opposing goalkeepers Hugo Lloris and Alex McCarthy.
But it was energetic South Korean star Son Heung-Min who finally found the net in the second-half, to help earn his Spurs side a crucial victory after a slow start to the Premier League season.
Son, who scored twice for Tottenham in their recent 3-1 Europa League win over Qarabag, had the first chance of the game, but his effort met the head of Damien Delaney. Harry Kane, still without a club goal this term, meanwhile, nodded over from the resulting corner.
It took nearly 10 minutes until the next chance, this time again from the hosts, as Erik Lamela forced Eagles stopper McCarthy into a brilliant save down low from a long-ranged effort.
Brede Hangeland had Palace’s first shot on goal, but it was snatched up by Lloris. While, at the the end, Tottenham hit their visitors on the counter but Nacer Chadli couldn’t get enough on his strike.
Spurs kept piling on the pressure, and McCarthy had to make another super save just past the half-hour mark, with teenager Deli Alli striking this time.
But Alan Pardew’s men didn’t give up, as Yannick Bolasie and Bakary Sako came close from out the area, the latter off a free-kick. However, again Lloris saved both with confidence.
The Frenchman was finally beaten just before the break, but luckily the post was to his rescue. Yohan Cabaye was the man with the wonderful effort from an angle.
Son, who was lively all day, nearly caught out McCarthy early into the second-half, as the keeper perhaps too casually tried to clear a back-pass that hit the South Korean.
Lloris brilliantly saved a free-kick in the first-half, and McCarthy followed suit in the second, as he palmed over a curling shot from Lamela.
Son started to really test the visitors from the right hand side now, and this time he forced another great save from McCarthy, with Ben Davies eventually heading in. But the young English stopper was sparred as Kane was offside.
Both keepers were superb throughout the match, but Lloris produced perhaps the best of the day after an hour, again off Sako’s shot. The highly-rated Frenchman tipped onto the post from the Mali attacker, who stuck well from an angle.
Son was finally the man to break the deadlock and the wall that is McCarthy just minutes later, and one that he should’ve perhaps saved, as the South Korean guided the ball through his legs and into the back of the net.
Alli was keen to get in on the act too in the hope of adding to his strike against Leicester City, as he went for goal rather than passing it, but was just wide.
Despite the Eagles’ best attempts to find a late leveller, Spurs held on thanks to Son’s strike in the 68th minute. Mauricio Pochettino will have Lloris much to thank as well, though, after some match-winning saves to help ensure a third-successive clean sheet.
The result hands Tottenham their second league win of the season and moves them all the way up from 16th place to within just one point of the top four (level with Palace).