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Published: 18:12 | 14/2/16

Spurs victorious at City

Tottenham second after win

Tottenham Hotspur returned to second place in the Premier League with a 2-1 victory over Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium.

Following a relatively uneventful first half, Harry Kane broke the deadlock from the penalty spot, after referee Mark Clattenburg had harshly penalised Raheem Sterling.

Substitute Kelechi Iheanacho smashed in a strike from Gael Clichy’s low cross to equalise with a little over 15 minutes remaining.

An incisive Erik Lamela pass, however, was complemented by Christian Eriksen’s excellent finish to secure a superb victory for Spurs.

With Arsenal having beaten Leicester City earlier on Sunday, Tottenham are now just two behind the table-topping Foxes and ahead of the Gunners on goal difference.

City sit four points behind the two North London clubs.

Spurs started well at the Etihad. Son Heung-min had the ball in the net, but the Korean had been correctly flagged for offside prior to firing in from a tight angle, before Joe Hart did well to parry an Eriksen drive away to safety.

At the other end, City struggled to penetrate against the disciplined visitors, although Danny Rose needed to produce a brave block to stop a powerful Sterling volley from 10 yards.

The hosts’ first decent chance of the game arrived four minutes into the second half, as Yaya Toure's attempt was deflected into the path of Sergio Aguero, who uncharacteristically fired over the crossbar from the corner of the six-yard box.

Spurs made the most of the escape by taking the lead through Kane, who passed his spot-kick straight down the middle, following Clattenburg’s penalisation of Sterling for hand-ball. Rose’s cross had certainly caught the former Liverpool man’s arm but Sterling, who may not have even been in the box, could seemingly have done little to prevent the contact.

Son was presented with a chance to double City’s through a fortunate ricochet, but the attacker took too long to strike.

Following Kane’s goal, however, it was City who had largely dominated, with Aguero and Toure leading the push for an equaliser - the latter struck the bar with a free-kick - as Spurs sat back and invited pressure.

The leveller arrived through a one-two between Clichy and David Silva that allowed the Frenchman to pull the ball across for Iheanacho, who fired high past the helpless Hugo Lloris.

City appeared to be the more likely of the two teams to win the clash but substitute Lamela’s through-ball was collected expertly by Eriksen, who calmly side-footed a 83rd-minute finish home.

The hosts threw all that they could muster at the visitors in the time that remained, with Lloris taking the ball off the head of Nicolas Otamendi before Silva fired the resultant rebound over the crossbar.

Spurs held on for an excellent victory that ought to give Mauricio Pochettino plenty of hope that he and has side can pull of an unlikely title triumph.

By David Maher

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