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Last Updated: Wednesday, 7 January, 2004, 21:37 GMT
Tottenham 4-1 Birmingham
Robbie Keane and Stephane Dalmat celebrate for Spurs
Spurs saw off Birmingham with a three-goal salvo in the first half.

Stephane Dalmat put them ahead with a stunning low drive from 25 yards, and he doubled the lead after Maik Taylor fumbled Robbie Keane's cross-shot.

Simon Davies then converted Johnnie Jackson's centre before the break, his first goal for Spurs since February.

Birmingham got on the scoresheet with a Robbie Savage penalty after David Dunn was fouled, but Keane made it 4-1 by tapping in Freddie Kanoute's cross.

Despite dominating most of the first half, Spurs nearly gifted their visitors an early opener.

After Dunn had fired wide from 30 yards, the former Blackburn man dispossessed Dalmat and sent a curling shot towards the top corner, only for Kasey Keller to tip over the bar.

But with Spurs first real chance, they took the lead. Dalmat picked the ball up outside the box on the right, cut in and lashed a left foot shot into the bottom corner from 25 yards.

10 mins: Dalmat's stunner puts Spurs ahead
24 mins: Dalmat doubles their advantage
39 mins: Davies converts Jackson's cross
68 mins: Savage scores from the penalty spot
79 mins: Keane taps in

It was the Frenchman's second goal for the club, and he did not have to wait long to score his third.

Keane's cross-shot from the right was parried away by Taylor but straight into Dalmat's path, and the midfielder tapped home to double Spurs' lead.

Keane had two chances to get on the scoresheet himself, first hitting tamely at Taylor having been put clean through, and then mis-kicking from two yards after Birmingham failed to clear Anderton's free-kick.

But Spurs did go into the break 3-0 up, Davies scoring his first goal for the club since last February by slotting home from Jackson's cross.

If the game appeared over Birmingham did not show it, and they came out with Steve Bruce's half-time words ringing in their ears.

First Clinton Morrison fired past the post and then Mikkael Forssell saw a long-range drive fly wide, in between Keane blazing over from six yards at the other end, an astonishing miss.

Forssell had an even better chance to reduce the deficit just after the hour mark, but he headed wastefully onto the roof of the net from Savage's free-kick.

Moments later it should have been 4-0. Dalmat's weaving run set up a chance for Kanoute, but his effort from the edge of the box cannoned off the crossbar.

Halfway through the half the visitors did get a reward for their hard work. Dunn jinked into the Spurs box and was tripped by Dalmat, Savage stepping up to slot home from the spot.

But there was no way back into it for the Blues when Kanoute crossed for Keane to finally get on the scoresheet with 11 minutes left.

Tottenham: Keller, Carr, Doherty, King, Jackson, Anderton (Kelly 86), Dalmat (Ricketts 79), Poyet, Davies, Kanoute (Postiga 79), Keane.
Subs not used: Hirschfeld, Bunjevcevic.

Birmingham: Taylor, Kenna, Purse, Cunningham, Johnson, Dunn, Savage, Clemence (Hughes 80), Carter (Tebily 45), Morrison, Forssell (Kirovski 83).
Subs not used: Bennett, John.

Attendance: 30,016.

Referee: B Knight (Kent).

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