Tottenham Hotspur didn’t put together their best performance on Wednesday night, but they’re still in the title race thanks to Christian Eriksen. His brilliant long-range strike sealed the three points for Spurs in a 1-0 victory away to Crystal Palace.
The home side was the much better one over the opening 15 minutes, and was unlucky not to score as Spurs started slowly. James McArthur nearly found the back of the net during a set piece scramble just three minutes in, and Christian Benteke forced an early save.
While Spurs weren’t great in the final 30 minutes of the half, they did take control and look much less under threat. However, their failure to create chances was equally frustrating for fans and players. Victor Wanyama picked up a yellow card in the 26th minute and was lucky not to be sent off for his subsequent fouls.
Between Wanyama’s booking, some fitness concerns for Mousa Dembele and Spurs lacking creativity in the final third, Mauricio Pochettino made some halftime chances. Moussa Sissoko and Son Heung-Min came on, replacing Wanyama and Dembele. That shifted the team from the 3-4-2-1 they started in to a 4-3-3 with Eric Dier operating as a single pivot.
Spurs improved in that setup, creating their best chance of the game in the 58th minute. Kyle Walker sent a sensational cross towards the back post for Dele Alli to finish off, but Dele missed wide from close range.
A 0-0 draw appeared to be on the cards until the 78th minute, when Eriksen won the game by himself, hitting an incredible shot from 30 yards to beat Wayne Hennessey. It was the 8th Premier League goal of the season for Eriksen, taking him to 20 combined goals and assists for the campaign.
Tottenham was well in control from then until the end of the game, with Palace struggling to offer much of a threat. The hosts ended with just six shot attempts, and that 15th minute strike by Benteke was their only attempt on target of the night.