Spurs’ title hopes suffer further blow with damaging defeat

Spurs’ title hopes suffer further blow with damaging defeat
Leicester City players celebrate their goal against Tottenham Hotspurs on Sunday.
LONDON, DEC 20 (AGENCIES) | Publish Date: 12/20/2020 12:01:50 PM IST

Tottenham’s Premier League title hopes suffered a second significant dent in as many games as they fell to a 2-0 home defeat to Leicester City.

Looking to bounce back from the disappointment of conceding late in a 2-1 defeat to leaders Liverpool in midweek, Spurs instead saw a lacklustre performance deservedly punished. A Jamie Vardy penalty put Leicester in front on the stroke of half-time before an own goal from Toby Alderweireld put the Foxes firmly in command. 

Tottenham’s failure to find a way back into the game leaves them six points adrift of Liverpool and sees them drop to fourth, with Leicester now second and four behind the champions. Leicester started strongly but their five shots in the opening 20 minutes yielded no reward and the first effort on target from either team did not come until the 34th minute, when Kasper Schmeichel was required to keep out a deflected free-kick from Harry Kane, who then headed over from close range. But a largely uneventful first half ended with a familiar face putting Leicester in front, Vardy firing home from 12 yards in the fourth minute of stoppage time after Serge Aurier had barged into the back of Wesley Fofana just inside the area. Spurs, trailing at half-time for the first time in 20 league games, threw on Gareth Bale for Tanguy Ndombele after the interval but looked to have fallen 2-0 down within three minutes of the restart when James Maddison superbly controlled James Justin’s long ball and confidently slotted beyond Hugo Lloris. However, Maddison was deemed to have strayed marginally offside by VAR but Leicester’s lead was doubled just before the hour mark.

Vardy showed more desire than Alderweireld to attack a deep cross from Marc Albrighton and although Moussa Sissoko did to defend it, his header deflected off the his team-mate and past Lloris. Schmeichel produced a stunning reaction stop to deny Son Heung-min but Spurs struggled to threaten thereafter as Leicester stood firm to claim a win that underlines their credentials as title challengers.

Ten-man Sheffield Utd denied as Brighton grab late equaliser
Ten-man Sheffield United were denied a first win of the season when Brighton & Hove Albion’s Danny Welbeck struck late to cancel out Premier League debutant Jayden Bogle’s goal in a 1-1 draw at the Amex Arena on Sunday. The visitors were reduced to 10 men when John Lundstram was sent off for upending Joel Veltman in a reckless challenge in the first half, with the referee changing his decision from a yellow card to a red following a VAR review.
Brighton, yet to win at home this season, stayed 16th in the standings, two points above the relegation zone, while United remained rooted to the bottom with two points from 14 games.
Despite Brighton’s domination, United took the lead when Bogle made an impact after coming on as a second-half substitute.
The 20-year-old fired David McGoldrick’s cut-back towards goal and a deflection off Adam Webster took the ball past goalkeeper Robert Sanchez in the 63rd minute.

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