Tottenham Hotspur overcame a shaky first half to beat Queens Park Rangers 2-1 at White Hart Lane. Tottenham need an Alejandro Faurlin own goal to get their scoring started, but needed only 90 seconds to add a second to their tally as Jermain Defoe scored his fourth goal of the season.
The match started brightly for both teams. Spurs looked they might be able to take advantage of QPR after Jose Bosingwa had to come off in the second minute due to a hamstring injury. The first quarter hour saw both teams have some decent chances, but it was arguably the visitors that were on top after the first 15 minutes.
Following the initial period of back and forth, QPR really started to grab hold of the match. Junior Hoilett consistently caused problems for the Tottenham defense and only a couple of good saves from Brad Friedel denied him a deserved goal. However, Rangers' efforts were not to go unrewarded as Bobby Zamora broke the deadlock following a lovely pass from Alejandro Faurlin. The Argentine midfielder slipped Zamora in, who calmly lifted the ball over the onrushing Brad Friedel.
Tottenham Hotspur look very uncomfortable in the first half. Clint Dempsey and Gareth Bale especially look very bad in their respective roles. Gylfi Sigurdsson continued to look unimpressive in his role behind the striker and Jermain Defoe was very much a non-entity. At the end of the first 45 minutes, Tottenham Hotspur looked very much like a team that needed a change.
Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas made that change at the start of the second half bringing on Steven Caulker for Gylfi Sigurdsson. The change moved Jan Vertonghen to left back and Gareth Bale to left wing. The changed looked to do Spurs some good as Clint Dempsey put a shot on goal that was saved by Julio Cesar. Tottenham then looked threatening from a corner kick, but QPR managed to clear their lines, perhaps with the help of a handball, but the referee waved away Tottenham's penalty appeals.
Tottenham finally were able to level the match thanks to a Faurlin own goal. The midfielder that made QPR's opener saw a Steven Caulker header deflect into the net off of his shoulder. If that wasn't enough though, barely a minute later Spurs scored again. Vertonghen led a brilliant break, funneling the ball to Gareth Bale who smashed a shot off the crossbar. The ball fell to Jermain Defoe who was able to slide the ball past the last defender to put Tottenham into the lead.
The remainder of the game saw Tottenham stay on top. Tottenham lead a number of great counterattacks, but were never able to find the goal again. The result may seem a little unfair on QPR, who dominated possession. Spurs, however, were able to do much more with the possession they had, getting 19 shots (7 on goal). QPR got excellent performances from Clint Hill and Julio Cesar. The later may have been the man of the match, because without his efforts in the second half the scoreline could have been much worse.
For Tottenham Hotspur, Jan Vertonghen turned in another excellent performance and Gareth Bale overcame a poor first half to help Tottenham to their first home win of the Premier League season. The victory propels Tottenham into a tie for 8th place and only two points behind West Bromwich Albion and Everton for 3rd.
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