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Saturday 22 July 2017

Defiant Spurs sweep Arsenal aside in derby

'Fantastic' Tottenham stay hot on Chelsea heels in title race

Manager Mauricio Pochettino embraces Tottenham goalscorer Dele Alli after being substituted late on
Manager Mauricio Pochettino embraces Tottenham goalscorer Dele Alli after being substituted late on

Harry Kane revelled in Tottenham's 2-0 victory over Arsenal in the final north London derby at White Hart Lane yesterday.

The striker scored from the penalty spot within three minutes of Dele Alli's opener early in the second half as Spurs moved back to within four points of Chelsea, who had earlier won 3-0 at Everton.

Tottenham's win ensured they would finish above Arsenal for the first time in 22 years and virtually assured the club Champions League football next season.

Kane said: "Incredible. We obviously wanted to finish the last north London derby here on a high note and we did that.

Attention

"We were fantastic from the back all the way forward. We worked hard - we outworked them - we created the better chances and probably should have had a couple more in that first half.

"What a day. It's been a great weekend for us.

"The fans have got the bragging rights for now but we've still got four important games to finish off."

Jan Vertonghen immediately turned his attention to next week's fixture at West Ham and piling more pressure on Chelsea.

"It was a massive game in so many different ways," said the Belgian defender.

"We showed from the start we wanted to win more than them, and that we want to stay in the title race.

"It was a great performance throughout the team, from Hugo (Lloris) to Harry.

"We can't do anything else other than keep on winning games and putting pressure on them.

"If we win our game on Friday it'll be down to one point and then let's see what they do."

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino said: "It was a fantastic afternoon.

"I'm very happy for the players and our fans. To win against Arsenal in the last derby at White Hart Lane, it was so emotional for everyone.

"We tried to repay all the effort from the fans and the energy they gave us. But the most important thing was to keep the gap with Chelsea.

"I can understand our fans being excited about finishing above Arsenal, but I don't feel the same because for me it is about trying to win the title.

"It is so important now to try and win trophies every season - that is our aim.

"I think we are still in the race. It's true that it will be difficult but we will see what happens."

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger attempted to play down the significance of the result.

"Well done to them, but when you start the championship the target is not to finish above Spurs - it is to fight for the title," he said.

"In 20 years it happened once. Mathematically it has to happen once.

"We are not happy with it but we don't compare ourselves to Spurs - we compare ourselves to where we want to be."

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