Tottenham Hotspur are on top of Europa League Group C, but just barely. They struggled throughout the second half of their match against Asteras Tripoli, but magically, only conceded one goal in a 2-1 win.
Despite their terrible second half, Spurs were excellent at the end of the first half and scored twice before the halftime break. Andros Townsend created both goals, and they both came from attacks down the left.
In the 36th minute, Townsend was taken down on the edge of the box by Khalifa Papa Sankaré. He grabbed the ball, insisted he take the penalty himself and scored with a drive to the top right corner.
Townsend set up a goal for Harry Kane six minutes later with a similar kind of run. This time, instead of getting chopped down, he was able to get a cross into the center of the box. Kane got free from his marker and powered a header into the back of the net, notching yet another goal.
Spurs conceded a huge chance just 30 seconds into the second half, and it was a sign of bad things to come. Anastasios Tsokanis got clean through on goal on that occasion, but couldn't direct his shot on target.
Facundo Parra missed a great opportunity wide in the 53rd minute, then got a better chance just a minute after that, which he launched over the crossbar. Pablo Mazza picked out the far post in the 65th minute, but couldn't find the back of the net, instead hitting the woodwork.
While Asteras would eventually score, their goal came too late. Federico Fazio was shown a straight red card for a foul on Jerónimo Barrales, who converted the resulting penalty, but the Greek side couldn't find a second goal.