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Match Reports

Tottenham Hotspur v Norwich City

26 December 2015


CITY endured a disappointing Boxing Day as they were beaten 3-0 by Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane.

Alex Neil's side matched their opponents until Declan Rudd was adjudged to have brought down Harry Kane in the area on 26 minutes, with the former Canaries loanee scoring the penalty.

Kane added his second before half-time, and the hosts did a professional job in the second half with Tom Carroll's sweet strike completing the scoring ten minutes from the end.

The result was a poor one for Alex Neil's side but their focus will quickly switch forward with Monday's home game against Aston Villa on the horizon.

Neil made two changes to his midfield before kick-off as Vadis Odjidja-Ofoe started for only the second time in the league for the Canaries.

The Belgium international replaced Wes Hoolahan, who dropped to the bench, while there was also a starting spot for Youssouf Mulumbu, with Gary O'Neil not involved in the matchday squad. Sebastien Bassong started against his former club.

Tottenham's attack was spearheaded by leading scorer Kane, who spent time on loan at Norwich during the 2012-13 season. He scored in their 2-0 victory at Southampton last time out.

Odjidja had the game's opening chance after five minutes as he curled an effort goalwards after a swift City forward move, but Hugo Lloris pushed the ball to safety.

The midfielder was keen to stay involved in the opening stages of the contest as Neil's side matched their high-profile opponents, earning three corners inside the first 15 minutes.

Spurs opened City up for the first time on 23 minutes though, with Dele Alli forcing a strong save from Rudd at the back-post before Kane swept his rebound effort wide.

Three minutes later they were awarded the penalty that would give them the advantage.

Kane raced onto a through ball and was tagged by Rudd, with Mike Jones immediately pointing to the spot. The striker himself stepped up and sent his penalty down the middle for the decisive first goal.

Spurs could have added to their lead as they pressed forward in the next ten minutes. Defender Toby Alderweireld saw his close-range header kept out superbly by Rudd, who then tipped Alli's chance over the bar.

Alderweireld was then allowed the space once again to meet a corner, but this time his header was off target - albeit only narrowly wide of Rudd's post.

City moved the ball forward well on 42 minutes but when Martin Olsson's cross was cleared away, they were punished on the counter-attack.

Alli fed Kane on the right side of the penalty area, and the in-form striker took a touch before firing his shot across Rudd and into the bottom corner.

HALF-TIME: Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 Norwich City

Tottenham resumed on the front foot in the second half and on 56 minutes they nearly scored their third.

First Rudd was sharply off his line to keep out Alli, before Bassong's backtracking proved crucial as he intercepted Erik Lamela's effort on the line.

City were struggling to keep hold of the ball and Rudd was called into action once again on 63 minutes when Alli's driving run set up an opportunity for Lamela, who saw his arrowed shot kept out by City's goalkeeper.

For the next spell, however, City enjoyed more of a say in proceedings but the best attempt they had was when Robbie Brady turned a Martin Olsson cross wide with a header.

Neil made three substitutions in one last push to get something from the game, but with ten minutes left on the clock Spurs wrapped up the points.

City's defence stood off substitute Carroll, who picked his spot left-footed from the corner of the area to remove any doubt about the final result in style.

Dieumerci Mbokani, who had replaced Brady, went close to netting City a consolation but Lloris got hands to his volley before poking the ball away from Jerome's reach on the line.

FULL-TIME: Tottenham Hotspur 3-0 Norwich City

GOALS: Spurs: Harry Kane (pen 26, 42), Tom Carroll (80)

TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR: Lloris (c), Walker, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Davies; Dembele (Chadli 86), Dier; Eriksen (Carroll 72), Alli (Son 79), Lamela; Kane. Subs not used: Vorm (GK), Rose, Trippier, Bentaleb.

NORWICH CITY: Rudd; Martin (c), Bennett, Bassong, Olsson; Redmond, Mulumbu (Howson 73), Tettey, Brady (Mbokani 79); Odjidja (Dorrans 73); Jerome. Subs not used: Ruddy (GK), Whittaker, Hoolahan, Lafferty.

REFEREE: Mike Jones

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