Tottenham Hotspur picked themselves up after their blip against Sheffield United with an edged 1-0 win over high-flying Everton at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Monday night.
A greatly misfortunate own goal from Englishman Michael Keane in the first half was enough to see off a slow, weak performance from the Toffees.
The home side began the game with a far better tempo, moving the ball around the pitch quickly and testing Everton’s defence with a series of attempts. The opening exchanges were scrappy but Tottenham always found themselves on top.
Spurs found the go-ahead goal on the verge of the first-half drinks break when Giovani Lo Celso fired a shot well wide of the mark, just to see the ball take a monumental deflection off 27-year-old Keane and fly into the goal. Jordan Pickford could do nothing but watch in the Everton net as he had been wrong-footed by the original connection.
Hugo Lloris and Heung-Min Son failed to see eye-to-eye shortly after the halftime whistle as the teammates squared up to one another in a heated row believed to be as a result of lazy tracking-back from the Korean international. It took a gaggle of players to separate them as the teams walked into the tunnel.
The win sends Spurs leaping up the Premier League table to 8th, leaving Sheffield United and Burnley in their wake. Now on 48 points, they sit just a single point adrift of North-London rivals Arsenal in the projected Europa League qualifying spot.
Everton slump to their first defeat since Project Restart began with an uninspiring whimper. While it was an unlucky goal to concede, the Toffees showed little threat of producing anything and were always second-best. Just about the only positive Carlo Ancelotti can take back to Merseyside was a valuable half of first-team football for 19-year-old Anthony Gordon.