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Monday, 1 April, 2002, 15:58 GMT 16:58 UK
Spurs dent Leeds' hopes
Teddy Sheringham marked his return to the starting line-up with the winner
Sheringham attempts to fox David Batty
Tottenham 2-1 Leeds
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Tottenham put a further dent in Leeds' Champions League aspirations with a win which keeps their own slim European hopes alive.

Teddy Sheringham marked his return to the starting line-up with what proved to be the winner in an action-packed first-half.

Although Mark Viduka pulled one back for Leeds, Spurs held out in the face of intense second-half pressure.

Sheringham made an immediate impact with a flick-on to give Steffen Iversen a chance in the first minute but Dominic Matteo's challenge denied him a clean strike on goal.

I don't mind teams scoring good goals against us, but the six we have conceded this weekend were gifts
David O'Leary

Leeds went straight down the other end and almost took the lead.

Robbie Fowler latched on to Anthony Gardner's under-powered back-header and tried to lob Kasey Keller who back-pedalled furiously before stretching to tip the ball away.

The explosive start continued as Spurs took the lead on nine minutes.

Ben Thatcher was given time and space by a retreating Leeds defence to measure his cross and Iversen leaped above a static Matteo to plant a header past Martin.

Leeds almost replied in carbon-copy fashion a minute later but Dean Richards challenge did just enough to deny Viduka the cleanest of headers as he rose to meet Harte's cross.

The alert Keller came to Spurs rescue on 11 minutes, flicking the ball off Lee Bowyer's head as he tried to cash in on Viduka's knock-down.

Mark Viduka pulled a goal back for Leeds
Mark Viduka threw Leeds a lifeline

Leeds build-up play was neat and precise but Spurs carried a sharper cutting edge and scored a second on 29 minutes through Sheringham.

Richards flicked on Thatcher's long throw, Sheringham laid the ball back for Simon Davies whose shot was blocked by Jonathan Woodgate, but Sheringham was on the spot to stab home the loose ball.

It's going to be tough to qualify for Europe but we will give it a go
Steffen Iversen

With their Champions League ambitions ebbing away, Leeds applied the pressure at the start of the second-half and after David Batty's shot deflected off Gardner and away from Viduka, the Australian pulled a goal back on 51 minutes.

The approach play was neat, with Batty and Fowler combining to set up Viduka to nick the ball away from Richards and fire left-footed past Keller.

Sherwood's foul on Smith 25 yards out looked tailor-made for Ian Harte but the ball was tapped sideways for Danny Mills whose thumping shot was bravely blocked by Thatcher.

But as Leeds pressed, Spurs broke and it needed a brilliant full-length save from Nigel Martyn to palm away Iversen's header.

Tottenham: Keller, Gardner, Perry, Richards, Thatcher, Anderton (Poyet 62), Sherwood, Etherington (Clemence 83), Davies, Sheringham (Rebrov 88), Iversen.
Subs Not Used: Herschfeld, Thelwell.
Booked: Etherington, Thatcher.

Leeds: Martyn, Mills, Woodgate, Matteo, Harte, Smith, Bakke, Batty (Keane 66), Bowyer, Viduka, Fowler.
Subs Not Used: Kelly, Robinson, Wilcox, Johnson.

Att: 35,167

Referee: U Rennie (Sheffield)

Leeds manager David O'Leary
"I don't know how we were 2-0 down"
BBC Sport's Eleanor Oldroyd
"There was no way through the Spurs defence"
See also:

01 Apr 02 |  Eng Prem
Boro see off Rams
01 Apr 02 |  Eng Prem
Ipswich spurn chance
01 Apr 02 |  Eng Prem
Kanoute strike sinks Fulham
Links to more Eng Prem stories are at the foot of the page.


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