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Match Reports

Spurs 2 Burnley 1

20 December 2014

Spurs 2 Burnley 1

Ashley Barnes’ goal of the season contender ultimately counted for nothing as Tottenham edged out Burnley at White Hart Lane.

The Clarets striker rifled a magnificent drive into the top corner midway through the first half after Sean Dyche’s sided trailed to a controversial opener from the hosts. 

And it took another wonderful strike from Erik Lamela 10 minutes before half time to finally see Spurs over the line, as Burnley pressed hard in vain after the break for a precious point.

Burnley were unchanged from the side that beat Southampton last weekend.

And it was an open start by both sides, with Scott Arfield firing over and Ryan Mason drilling a low drive wide of Tom Heaton’s goal.

But following an inauspicious start, controversy led to the opening goal in the 21st minute. 

Referee Mike Jones blew up for an innocuous and accidental hand ball by Michael Keane - and from the quickly taken free kick an offside Christian Eriksen let the ball run for the supporting Nacer Chadli.

As Burnley stood still querying the free kick, the Belgian crossed first time from the left for Harry Kane to caress a header inside the far post.

Dyche and the Burnley bench immediately threw their arms up in despair, to no avail.

However, within six minutes the Clarets put their disappointment behind them to equalise in sensational style. 

George Boyd picked out Barnes in two yards of space centrally and following a first touch to open up his body, the striker curled a beauty into the top corner from 25 yards.

Parity restored, Burnley needed to take the sting out of the game. But immediately Spurs were within a whisker of regaining the lead.

Lamala worked his way to the by-line and from his ball across the face of goal Kane completely missed his kick and Eriksen, racing in at the far post, blazed over.

But the Argentinean soon went it alone and found the bottom corner with a terrific effort of his own to restore Spurs’ lead, cutting in from the right and beating Heaton with a pinpoint finish.

But Burnley came right back again and on the stroke of half time they came close to a second leveller, as Ings cut the ball back to the inrushing Dean Marney, who was inches away from scoring against his former club with a daisy-cutter just wide. 

The Clarets exploded from the blocks from the restart and twice, within a minute, Hugo Lloris needed to be alert to keep out Ings, first from a pulsating run and then from a near-post stabbed effort.

And in the 50th minute, following a sensational defence-splitting pass from Barnes, Ings raced clear to force yet another smart save from Lloris protecting his near post.

Burnley were now spreading nervousness around White Hart Lane as they pushed for that important second goal.

But as the clock ticked down, Spurs looked to expose gaps left in behind and Heaton needed to be alert to glove behind Chadli’s fierce shot from a narrow angle.

A double substitution was made to inject more life into the Clarets. And Ross Wallace was agonisingly close to repeating his heroics at Leicester in stoppage time.

Ings was fouled 30 yards from goal and the Scot stepped up to curl a free kick over the wall and force a sprawling save at his left hand post by Lloris.

BURNLEY: Heaton, Trippier, Keane, Shackell, Mee, Arfield (Wallace 79), Marney, Jones, Boyd (Kightly 79), Barnes (Jutkiewicz 89), Ings.
Subs: Gilks, Reid, Chalobah, Long

SPURS: Lloris, Walker, Vertonghen, Lamela, Kane (Soldado 83), Fazio, Chadli, Eriksen, Davies, Mason (Stambouli 44), Bentaleb.
Subs: Rose, Chiriches, Vorm, Townsend, Dembele

Ref: M Jones

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