mind the gap

Jeffrey Schlupp goal denies Tottenham victory at Selhurst Park

Crystal Palace cancelled out Harry Kane’s goal with nine minutes of the match remaining.

TOTTENHAM EXTENDED THEIR unbeaten run to 11 Premier League games but were made to work hard for a 1-1 draw at Crystal Palace.

Harry Kane’s 15th goal of the season put Spurs in front midway through the first half but from then on they retreated and allowed Palace to dominate the game.

Roy Hodgson’s men laid siege to the Tottenham goal and eventually forced a way through when Jeffrey Schlupp converted in the 81st minute.

It was the first time Jose Mourinho’s side had conceded in close to 500 minutes, but it was no surprise considering the pressure they came under.

They completely went into their shell after Kane and Son Heung-min had combined for the 13th time this season and 32nd overall in the Premier League and only came back to life in the final 10 minutes when Ben Davies hit the crossbar and Vicente Guaita made two good saves.

The draw means Spurs would be usurped at the top of the table by Liverpool if the Reds won at Fulham later on Sunday.

Goals always looked likely after an open start, where Wilfried Zaha brought a good early save out of Hugo Lloris and then blasted over after an incisive ball by Eberechi Eze.

Spurs were also dangerous and had two good chances to draw first blood as Guaita denied Tanguy Ndombele with a superb low stop before palming away a Kane header.

But the Spanish goalkeeper was at fault as Spurs took the lead in the 23rd minute and there was little surprise in the two players involved.

Son rolled the ball to Kane and the England captain unleashed a 25-yard effort that swerved and went through the grasp of Guaita, who should have kept it out.

Kane was not complaining as he celebrated his ninth league goal of the campaign.

Palace’s response was spirited as they continued to ask questions of the visitors, whose mean defence made it difficult for them.

They thought they had found a way through in the 43rd minute but were denied by the woodwork as Palace shifted the ball across goal to Eze, whose low curling shot hit the outside of the post.

Palace continued in the ascendancy after the break as they camped in the Spurs half in search of an equaliser.

2.57089075 Wilfried Zaha was a handful for Palace.

Zaha, a constant threat, could not keep an effort down after cutting inside before they spurned a big chance in the 68th minute.

The hosts continued to barrage Spurs with pressure and Benteke, who ended his drought last week at West Brom, sent a header just over.

Christian Benteke headed a free-kick back across goal and it fell to Schlupp, who somehow skied the ball from six yards out, before the Belgian striker headed over from a corner.

Spurs could not hold out any longer as Palace finally found a way through with nine minutes remaining.

Lloris could not hold a free-kick into the box and Schlupp was on hand to fire home the loose ball.

That finally prompted Spurs back into life and Guaita redeemed himself in fine fashion as Mourinho’s men pushed for a winner.

After Davies’ overhit cross cannoned against the crossbar, Guaita did well to save Kane’s header.

But he saved his best until last, flinging himself to his right in added time to spectacularly keep out Eric Dier’s free-kick, which was bound for the top corner.


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