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December 11, 2011
• Britannia Stadium, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire
Referee: C. Foy
• Attendance: 27529
M. Etherington 13', 43'
E. Adebayor 62'
Shots on Target
Chris Foy calls time on the game and Stoke claim all three points this evening. Their energetic start and constant threat from set pieces did for Tottenham who just took too long to get going. For all their possession, chances were kept to long range shots and Bale's low crosses from the left. Tottenham's run of 6 wins in a row is officially over and Stoke move up to 8th place in the Premier League.
90' + 4'
No kitchen sink heading Stoke's way by the looks of it. The home side have kept possession well when they've had it and Spurs look to have run out of ideas.
90' + 1'
Yellow CardScott Parker
5 minutes added on and it's no surprise to see. However the pace of the game has definitely caught up with both teams and it's almost been reduced to walking pace. Can Spurs salvage anything?
Rafael van der Vaart
Giovani dos Santos
Another set piece and another problem for Spurs. Etherington's in-swinging corner is met at the near post by Shawcross but Friedel reacts will to tip over for another corner. Would you believe it? Straight from that corner, Stoke repeat the same trick. Shawcross again meeting the cross and flicking onto the crossbar. Very unlucky.
Yellow CardMarc Wilson
Chances at both ends. Shotton just has to lift his cross to take advantage of the extra numbers Stoke had. But his cross is too low and Bassong clears, preventing an unmarked Crouch a chance at goal. At the other end, Bale rifles a ball low across goal but again the Spurs strikers are slightly off the pace.
Not sure where to start here. Modric initially strikes well on his left but Sorensen matches him again. Then, the resulting corner is played short until a low cross from the left just evades Defoe at the back post. In the pile up of bodies it looks like Kaboul is going to be striking into an empty net but Shawcross heads off the line. Stoke escape
Our man Nick Price at the Britannia Stadium: "Deafening boos whenever Luka Modric touches the ball, but the Croat was caught without a doubt for me. Replays suggest it was a slight touch, but it was enough to knock him off balance. Tense and hostile atmosphere at the moment with both teams looking like they have more goals in them."
It really has been all Tottenham and despite Crouch's excellent work up top, Stoke have only really threatened this half from Shotton's long throws
Yellow CardYounes Kaboul
Inches wide from Adebayor. The Togolese forward cut back on the left hand corner of the box onto his favoured right foot. His curling effort looked to be settling in Sorensen's goal but it whistled just wide. Adebayor drops to his knees in disbelief.
Flowing move from Spurs as Bale flies down the left with Shotton in hot pursuit. He squares the ball inside and Modric works the ball to Parker. After composing himself, the England midfielder strikes from 20 yards but Sorensen's fabulous diving save prevents it nestling in the top corner
Penalty GoalEmmanuel Adebayor
Penalty to Tottenham! As Spurs go inches from pulling a goal back after Walker's cross is nearly turned into his own goal by Woodgate, Modric dances into the Stoke box from the resulting corner and is felled by Whelan.
A spot of dissent in the Tottenham ranks? Bale isn't happy with something Modric has done and forcefully tells him so. Whatever it was it gave Bale a spring in his step and his whipped cross is just headed clear by Shawcross.
Not even a half-chance really. Jermain Defoe picked up a ball off the toes of a teammate to swivel and hit a trademark strike from 20 yards. Unfortunately for Tottenham it was woefully inaccurate and sailed into the stands. Nothing seems to be coming off for the north London side at the moment.
Redknapp is seething on the sideline and it appears to be the amount of time Stoke's throw-ins are eating up. Ryan Shotton is ensuring every last drop of moisture is wiped off the ball before launching it into the Tottenham box.
Chance for Spurs as sub Bassong met Modric's corner at the back post. His header, though firm, has too much under it and Sorensen is untroubled.
Stoke look to continue where they left off and immediately force a corner via a Walters cross. The corner comes to little, but the warning signs are evident already.
Two changes for Tottenham as Redknapp wrings the changes at half time. Jermain Defoe replaces Lennon and Bassong adds some much needed height to the Spurs defence, coming on for Assou-Ekotto. Interestingly (or not) Assou-Ekotto touched the ball more than Wilson, Huth, Shawcross and Etherington combined in the first half!
Goal.com's Nick Price: "Stoke fans with a rousing rendition of Swing Low, Sweet Chariot. They certainly do revel in their reputation as the Premier League's 'rugby' team."
Half time and Stoke are serenaded off the pitch by the home fans. They've been dangerous on the front foot and dug deep when not in possession. For all Tottenham's resurgence, they were restricted to long range efforts and Sorensen has been equal to them all. Harry Redknapp will need to deliver a rousing half time talk to rescue something here.
GOOOAAALLL!!! Another Shotton long throw in finds a Stoke head and Walters flick falls to the same man, this time popping up at the back post to turn into the Tottenham net. Etherington avoids Kaboul's attempt at blocking on the line and with Friedel nowhere, the Potters double their lead.
Credit to referee Chris Foy who is certainly letting a few fouls slide in the interests of allowing the game to flow. Tottenham see an Adebayor curler from outside the box test Sorensen again but it's another easy gather for the Stoke keeper.
Spurs continue to press and as Adebayor's layoff to Parker leads to the midfielder getting clattered by Woodgate, his final touch shifts the ball to Lennon, again on the right. The winger cuts inside but his shot from the edge of the box is deflected through to Sorensen.
To indicate their recent spell of dominance, Tottenham have had 81% of the possession in the last ten minutes.
The continued pressure from the away side is beginning to lead to chances, this time Modric draws a splendid save from Sorensen as he drives from range. The 20 yard strike was hit low and to the Dane's right but he was swift to get down and palm away for a corner.
Yellow CardJonathan Woodgate
Spurs have finally awoken and a good spell of possession sees Lennon drift to the left flank. As the ball broke by the touchline, the diminutive winger beat Woodgate for pace and won a free kick. The former Spurs defender was booked for the tackle.
Glen Whelan's corner looks well rehearsed as Huth darts to the front post but the connection on his attempted flick is too strong and flies over Friedel's bar.
First meaningful effort on goal for Spurs as Van der Vaart finds space 25 yards out. His left footed strike is on target but fails to trouble Sorensen who comfortably gathers it low to his left.
Still no real response from Spurs as possession is proving tough to come by. Stoke on the other hand continue to look threatening and mainly through Ryan Shotton
GOOOAAAALLLL!!! It had been coming: first Walters caused Gallas problems under a high ball into the box. The knock down fell to Crouch who nearly found the space for an effort at goal but as the chance looked to disappear, his hooked cross fell to former Spurs man Etherington who finished from 6 yards emphatically
First sniff of an opportunity for Spurs as Van der Vaart and Adebayor combine to release Bale down the left flank. He reaches the Stoke box but his low cross is smuggled behind for a corner.
Shotton is doing a great impression of Rory Delap with his long throws and another causes Tottenham problems as Crouch's flick on sees Huth challenge at the back post. His header lands on the roof of the net though and Tottenham can try and relax.
Another half-chance for Stoke as Etherington squirms past Kyle Walker on the left flank. But, forced onto his unfancied right foot, fires his shot from distance straight at Friedel. Encouraging start for Stoke.
Assou-Ekotto tries to control the ball but finds it rather trapped under his feet. Ryan Shotton is onto it in a flash but with his head down and from a wide angle, fires a low shot past Friedel's right hand post.
The home crowd are in full voice, urging Tony Pulis' team out of the blocks and they look to have unsettled Tottenham already.
Great start for Stoke as Ryan Shotton's long throw is half cleared by Assou-Ekotto to the edge of the box. Etherington met the ball on the volley but Friedel parried away from goal.
We're all set and the home team get us underway
The weather in Stoke isn't looking too appealing: drab and dreary best describes conditions at the Britannia Stadium. This will be a massive test for Harry Redknapp's team, particularly given recent suggestions that they are title contenders.
Goal.com's Nick Price from the Britannia Stadium: "No big shocks from either team in terms of lineups, though Stoke fans may be quivering at the thought of Gareth Bale hurtling down the left flank like The Flash with Jonathan Woodgate tasked with stopping him. The former Tottenham man had an iffy game out wide, where he has been shifted to accommodate Robert Huth in the middle alongside Ryan Shawcross, at Everton last week, and it's safe to say that Bale will be relishing the prospect of taking on a defender not noted for having the quickest set of legs, although right-back Ryan Shotton does play in midfield for the hosts and he will likely be tasked with tracking the Welshman up and down the touchline."
Tottenham line-up: Friedel; Walker, Kaboul, Gallas, Asso-Ekotto; Lennon, Parker, Modric, Bale; Van der Vaart; Adebayor: Subs: Gomes, Dos Santos, Defoe, Bassong, Corluka, Sandro, Pienaar
Stoke line-up: Sorensen; Woodgate, Shawcross, Huth, Wilson; Shotton, Whelan, Whitehead, Etherington; Walters, Crouch: Subs: Begovic, Jones, Fuller, Upson, Delap, Jerome, Palacios
Good afternoon all and welcome to Goal.com's live commentary of Stoke versus Tottenham Hotspur. Whilst Spurs are enjoying their best league winning run since 1990, the Britannia Stadium is a notoriously tough place to claim three points. Stoke have rediscovered their form with back to back league wins and claiming maximum points will take them to 8th place.
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