Football news - Heung-min Son and Dele Alli help Tottenham exact revenge over Arsenal
League Cup quarter-final – Emirates Stadium – Arsenal 0 Tottenham 2 (Son 20, Alli 59)
Goals from Heung-min Son and Dele Alli helped Tottenham exact revenge over Arsenal with a 2-0 League Cup quarter-final win at the Emirates.
Two weeks on from Arsenal’s thrilling 4-2 victory over Spurs in the Premier League, Unai Emery’s side were second best as they attempted to inflict another defeat on their north London rivals.
After Paulo Gazzaniga denied Henirkh Mkhitaryan, Son beat the offside trap to give Spurs a first-half lead, and Alli did likewise after the break before chipping a delightful effort over Petr Cech.
Alexandre Lacazette hit the post as the hosts looked to strike back, and after Alli responded with a ‘2-0’ sign to Arsenal fans when he appeared to be hit by a plastic bottle, Spurs ensured the scoreline remained just that as they reached the last four thanks to only their second-ever victory at the Emirates.
Chasing a first piece of silverware since 2008, Spurs snatched the early advantage with Son, leading the line for Spurs in place of the rested Harry Kane, finishing well on the end of superb Alli pass to score his first-ever north London derby goal.
Even without Mesut Ozil, who was again left out of the Arsenal squad for “tactical reasons”, Arsenal created plenty of openings in response, with Aaron Ramsey going closest to a first-half leveller, denied by a smart save by Tottenham stand-in goalkeeper Gazziniga.
Mauricio Pochettino then introduced Kane in the second half, and the England striker had an immediate impact, clipping a delightful pass into the path of Alli, whose finish was nonchalant in the extreme, dinking the ball over the onrushing Cech.
Arsenal huffed and puffed in response, but Spurs saw out that second win in 17 trips to the Emirates to book a spot in the last four of the League Cup for the first time since 2014-15.
Pochettino’s stock rises yet further. In a week of intense speculation over whether Mauricio Pochettino will resist the advances of Manchester United, the Spurs manager oversaw this impressive victory that will only intensify such talk. The decision to go with Son as a main striker, the unearthing of Gazzaniga’s talents as a reserve goalkeeper and getting the best out of Alli steered Spurs to a big win over their rivals, and those naysayers who say Pochettino needs to win something to be regarded as a top coach may not be able to cite such for much longer. Expect a call from Ed Woodward in the morning, Mr Levy.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Dele Alli. That finish. To finish like that at such a crucial moment, on such a big stage, takes some confidence, but Alli has that in abundance. He was a thorn in the Arsenal side all evening, scoring one and providing the other. Even a bottle to the head, thrown from the crowd, could not stop Alli in this mood.
Dele Alli of Tottenham Hotspur scores his team's second goalGetty Images
8’ - CLOSE! Great football from Ramsey, Alex Iwobi feeds the ball back into the Welshman, who unleashes a powerful strike for goal, but it flies just wide.
12’ - SAVE! Big, big stop from Paulo Gazzaniga! Mkhitaryan plays a wonderful one-two with Ramsey, the Armenian is put clean through, but Gazziniga is equal to the strike. Should really have scored, but good stop.
20’ - GOOOOOOALLLLL! Arsenal 0-1 Tottenham. It had been coming as Heung-Min Son gives Spurs the lead. VAR says goal! Son was just onside after being played in by a slick Alli pass, with the Korean finishing superbly to net his first north London derby goal.
Heung-min Son scored for Tottenham against ArsenalGetty Images
31’ - Drama! No penalty given against Lucas in the Tottenham box, Spurs then go straight down the other end, Eriksen feeds Moussa Sissoko, in a great position, but the France international scoops the ball over the top.
44’ - SAVE! Gazzaniga more than atones for his earlier error, brilliantly denying Ramsey, clawing Ramsey's first-time effort out with his right hand.
59’ - GOOOOAAAAALLLLL! Arsenal 0-2 Tottenham. What a finish! Alli puts Spurs on the brink of last four. An immediate impact from Kane as he lifts the perfect pass into the path of Alli, who takes one touch before nonchalantly lofting the ball over the onrushing Cech to double Spurs' advantage. Incredible confidence on such a big stage.
62’ - POST! Lacazette comes within a whisker of a rapid response, but he can only steer Aubameyang's pull back onto the foot of the post. Ramsey jumped out of the way thinking the ball was going in!
76’ - CROSSBAR! Aubameyang slices a cross too close to Gazzaniga, but the ball clips the top of the crossbar and comes back out. Spurs clear in the aftermath.
Heung-min SonGetty Images
Arsenal have been eliminated from the League Cup by Spurs for the first time since 2008; a season in which Spurs went on to win the competition (2-1 v Chelsea in the final).
This was just Spurs’ second win against Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium in all competitions (D5 L10), and their first since November 2010 (3-2 in the Premier League).
Arsenal have lost back-to-back games in all competitions for the first time since August, in what were Unai Emery’s first two competitive games in charge.
This was the 14th meeting between Arsenal and Spurs in the League Cup; the joint-most played fixture in competition history (with Arsenal v Liverpool).
Dele Alli was directly involved in both of Spurs' goals (one goal and one assist), as many as he had been in his previous seven games against Arsenal combined (2).