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Page last updated at 18:11 GMT, Saturday, 12 December 2009

Tottenham   0 - 1   Wolverhampton

Kevin Doyle
Doyle celebrates after taking his tally to four league goals for the season

By Ian Hughes

Wolves achieved successive top-flight victories for the first time in 26 years after edging out Tottenham.

They struck after only three minutes when Kevin Doyle got the faintest of headers on a cross from Nenad Milijas.

Jermain Defoe had a near-post volley saved, Robbie Keane headed over and Niko Kranjcar struck a volley wide as Spurs struggled to find a way back.

Sylvan Ebanks-Blake twice sent a shot narrowly wide but Wolves had done enough to move out of the bottom three.

Wolves's win, which was their first top-flight success in the capital since 1976, was reward for a tenacious, determined and disciplined display as they effectively suffocated Spurs.

McCarthy hails 'fabulous performance'

Boss Mick McCarthy would have been aware that Tottenham have been in free-scoring form at home of late, notching 13 goals in their last three games at White Hart Lane.

But McCarthy, up against Spurs manager Harry Redknapp for the first time, formulated a plan to nullify that threat and it was executed superbly by his players. They were helped by the hosts lacking their usual cut and thrust, but it would be unfair to not give Wolves a lot of credit for stifling their opponents.

And for a side that went into the game having kept only one clean sheet all season, Wolves showed tremendous resilience, not to say improvement, to hang on to their lead.

They could hardly have had longer to keep Tottenham at bay after taking the lead with their first attack of the afternoon when the impressive Milijas curled in a free-kick and Doyle glanced the ball in.

It was Doyle's fourth goal of the season and made him joint top scorer with centre-back Jody Craddock - a statistic that goes some way to explain why Wolves had won only one game away from home.

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Inevitably, Wolves's strategy was to sit back and protect their advantage - cue an afternoon of frustration for Spurs, who were even booed by their own fans.

Despite the game mostly being played in Wolves's half, Spurs could not find a penetrative pass.

Defoe's 25-yard shot was easy for Marcus Hahnemann, Craddock's intervention helped Robbie Keane's shot over the bar and the Irishman later headed over.

Aaron Lennon, quiet throughout, hit a tame shot at Hahnemann, who also got down well to deal with Defoe's volley, while Tom Huddlestone poked an effort wide.

In fact, the clearer chances fell the way of Wolves, with Ebanks-Blake going close after a breakaway and much later the striker had a shot that was deflected narrowly wide.

Tottenham's desperation was evident, with high balls going into the box aimed at substitute Peter Crouch but nothing came from them.

Early goal was key - Redknapp

Redknapp had also brought on Luka Modric for his first game since he broke his leg back in August but still opportunities were hard to come by.

When Spurs did fashion a decent chance, Kranjcar hit his volley into the ground and wide.

Huddlestone did manage to test Hahnemann with a fierce drive but the American was equal to it.

And it was no more than Wolves deserved as they shut Tottenham out and earned three points that could prove vital at the end of the season.


Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp:
"It was frustrating - we conceded early on and then could not break them down.

"We had lots of possession but we did not find that cutting edge to open them up. We probably had 80% of the possession but they defended very well.

"Full credit to Wolves - Mick McCarthy has done a great job there."

Wolves manager Mick McCarthy:
"Marcus Hahnemann's not been diving around making saves everywhere. I expect my keeper to have to make saves when we go to Spurs.

"Possession and passes and switching play - really good stuff at times from Spurs but Marcus made one really good save and no, we haven't been mullered.

"They've to work like that every game. If we have passengers we're knackered."

Live text and stats

 

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Premier League

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Tottenham 0-1 Wolves FT
(HT 0-1)
    • Doyle 3

    Tottenham

    Substitutes

    Wolverhampton

    Substitutes

    Ref: AttwellAtt: 36,012
    TOTTENHAM
    WOLVES

    Possession

    • Tottenham 60%
    • Wolves 40%

    Attempts on target

    • Tottenham 10
    • Wolves 3

    Attempts off target

    • Tottenham 9
    • Wolves 0

    Corners

    • Tottenham 3
    • Wolves 5

    Fouls

    • Tottenham 8
    • Wolves 13
    • 89:52 Booking Booking for Marcus Hahnemann.
    • Correction - 89:18 The ball is sent over by Benoit Assou-Ekotto, Close range headed effort by Peter Crouch goes wide of the left-hand upright.
    • 89:18 The ball is crossed by Benoit Assou-Ekotto, Peter Crouch has a headed effort at goal from close range which goes wide of the left-hand post.
    • 87:10 Jermain Defoe conjures a right-footed shot from inside the six-yard box that clears the bar.
    • 85:04 Sylvan Ebanks-Blake takes a shot. Michael Dawson gets a block in. Matthew Jarvis takes a short corner.
    • 82:21 Free kick awarded for a foul by Chris Iwelumo on Benoit Assou-Ekotto. Heurelho Gomes restarts play with the free kick.
    • 81:39 Tom Huddlestone takes a shot from 25 yards. Save made by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 81:09 Tom Huddlestone takes a shot. Save made by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 78:52 Substitution Chris Iwelumo comes on in place of Richard Stearman.
    • 78:25 Shot by Luka Modric from outside the box goes high over the crossbar.
    • 77:22 Substitution Dos Santos Giovani joins the action as a substitute, replacing Niko Kranjcar.
    • 77:22 Effort from inside the six-yard box by Niko Kranjcar goes wide right of the goal.
    • 73:28 Booking Stephen Ward shown a yellow card.
    • Correction - 73:05 Booking Stephen Ward booked for time wasting.
    • 71:55 Jermain Defoe fouled by Richard Stearman, the ref awards a free kick. Benoit Assou-Ekotto takes the direct free kick.
    • 69:02 Substitution Michael Mancienne joins the action as a substitute, replacing Nenad Milijas.
    • 68:24 Corner taken by Nenad Milijas from the right by-line, save by Heurelho Gomes.
    • 66:07 Benoit Assou-Ekotto delivers the ball, Peter Crouch takes a shot. Save made by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 64:28 Unfair challenge on Luka Modric by Kevin Foley results in a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Benoit Assou-Ekotto.
    • 63:49 Free kick awarded for a foul by Peter Crouch on Jody Craddock. Free kick taken by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 61:46 The assistant referee signals for offside against Sylvan Ebanks-Blake. Michael Dawson takes the indirect free kick.
    • 60:39 Sebastien Bassong concedes a free kick for a foul on Kevin Doyle. Nenad Milijas takes the direct free kick.
    • 57:37 Outswinging corner taken by Tom Huddlestone, clearance by Jody Craddock. Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Niko Kranjcar, Sebastien Bassong produces a header from deep inside the six-yard box that clears the bar.
    • 57:37 Substitution David Edwards goes off and Kevin Foley comes on.
    • 57:37 Substitution Luka Modric replaces Wilson Palacios.
    • 57:37 Substitution Peter Crouch replaces Robbie Keane.
    • 55:22 Niko Kranjcar challenges Richard Stearman unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 55:06 Unfair challenge on Heurelho Gomes by Kevin Doyle results in a free kick. Heurelho Gomes restarts play with the free kick.
    • 54:40 Corner taken left-footed by Nenad Milijas from the right by-line to the near post, Michael Dawson manages to make a clearance.
    • 53:24 Sylvan Ebanks-Blake is caught offside. Niko Kranjcar takes the indirect free kick.
    • 52:07 Niko Kranjcar challenges Nenad Milijas unfairly and gives away a free kick. The free kick is delivered left-footed by Nenad Milijas from right channel, clearance made by Michael Dawson. Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Nenad Milijas played to the near post, Michael Dawson manages to make a clearance.
    • 50:09 Foul by Christophe Berra on Robbie Keane, free kick awarded. Michael Dawson takes the free kick.
    • 46:59 Sylvan Ebanks-Blake takes a shot. Heurelho Gomes makes a comfortable save.
    • 46:26 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Benoit Assou-Ekotto by Kevin Doyle. Benoit Assou-Ekotto takes the direct free kick.
    • 45:42 Jermain Defoe is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Marcus Hahnemann takes the free kick.
    • 45:01 The game restarts for the second half.
    • Half Time
    • 45:00+4:01 The half-time whistle blows.
    • 45:00+3:27 Booking Matthew Jarvis goes into the book.
    • 45:00+1:59 Shot from long distance by Niko Kranjcar goes wide of the left-hand upright.
    • 45:00+1:50 Jermain Defoe takes a shot. Blocked by Christophe Berra.
    • Correction - 45:00+1:33 Sylvan Ebanks-Blake is ruled offside. Michael Dawson restarts play with the free kick.
    • 45:00+1:33 Sylvan Ebanks-Blake is caught offside. Michael Dawson takes the free kick.
    • 45:00+1:09 Aaron Lennon takes a shot. Comfortable save by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 43:26 Shot from inside the six-yard box by Tom Huddlestone goes wide right of the goal.
    • 42:17 Tom Huddlestone concedes a free kick for a foul on Nenad Milijas. Jody Craddock restarts play with the free kick.
    • 36:49 Jermain Defoe takes a shot. Marcus Hahnemann makes a comfortable save.
    • 36:18 Nenad Milijas gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Aaron Lennon. Aaron Lennon takes the direct free kick.
    • 34:53 The official flags Robbie Keane offside. Marcus Hahnemann restarts play with the free kick.
    • 34:05 Niko Kranjcar crosses the ball, Close range headed effort by Robbie Keane clears the crossbar.
    • 33:19 Aaron Lennon takes a shot. Christophe Berra gets a block in.
    • 29:40 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Christophe Berra by Niko Kranjcar. Free kick taken by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 27:25 Direct free kick taken by Tom Huddlestone.
    • 27:25 Booking Karl Henry shown a yellow card.
    • 27:20 Foul by Karl Henry on Tom Huddlestone, free kick awarded.
    • 26:28 Karl Henry gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Tom Huddlestone. Free kick taken by Sebastien Bassong.
    • 23:36 Effort on goal by Robbie Keane from just inside the penalty box goes harmlessly over the target.
    • 22:49 The offside flag is raised against Jermain Defoe. Marcus Hahnemann restarts play with the free kick.
    • 21:22 Jermain Defoe takes a shot. Save made by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • 19:16 Niko Kranjcar takes a outswinging corner from the right by-line played to the near post, clearance made by Kevin Doyle.
    • 16:44 Corner taken left-footed by Matthew Jarvis.
    • 14:39 Foul by Kevin Doyle on Sebastien Bassong, free kick awarded. Heurelho Gomes takes the direct free kick.
    • 14:02 Robbie Keane is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Marcus Hahnemann restarts play with the free kick.
    • 12:46 Niko Kranjcar fouled by Karl Henry, the ref awards a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Niko Kranjcar.
    • 9:04 Niko Kranjcar takes a shot from 25 yards. Christophe Berra gets a block in.
    • 7:24 Unfair challenge on Robbie Keane by Jody Craddock results in a free kick. Tom Huddlestone restarts play with the free kick.
    • 6:48 The official flags Jermain Defoe offside. Indirect free kick taken by Marcus Hahnemann.
    • Correction - 2:19 Assist by Nenad Milijas.
    • 2:19 Nenad Milijas provided the assist for the goal.
    • 2:19 GOAL - Kevin DoyleTottenham 0 - 1 Wolverhampton Kevin Doyle scores a headed goal from inside the area. Tottenham 0-1 Wolverhampton.
    • Correction - 1:38 Karl Henry fouled by Tom Huddlestone, the ref awards a free kick. Nenad Milijas restarts play with the free kick,
    • 1:38 Tom Huddlestone concedes a free kick for a foul on Karl Henry. Direct free kick taken by Nenad Milijas,
    • 0:00 The game kicks-off.

    Live text and data provided by The Press Association.



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    Premier League table

    Saturday, 12 December 2009 19:30 UK

    Position Team P GD PTS
    Full Premier League table
    1 Chelsea 16 27 37
    2 Man Utd 16 20 34
    3 Aston Villa 16 12 29
    4 Arsenal 14 20 28
    5 Tottenham 16 13 27
    6 Man City 15 8 26
    7 Liverpool 15 11 24
    8 Birmingham 16 0 24
    9 Fulham 16 3 23
    10 Sunderland 16 0 21
    11 Stoke 16 -4 21
    12 Blackburn 16 -12 19
    13 Burnley 16 -14 18
    14 Wigan 16 -17 18
    15 Everton 16 -8 17
    16 Hull 17 -17 17
    17 Wolves 16 -13 16
    18 West Ham 16 -7 14
    19 Bolton 15 -12 13
    20 Portsmouth 16 -10 11

    see also
    Saturday football as it happened
    12 Dec 09 |  Football
    Premier League photos
    12 Dec 09 |  Football
    Fan drops Assou-Ekotto allegation
    14 Dec 09 |  Tottenham



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