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29 Dec 2018

Tottenham’s shock at home, defeat to Wolves

Spurs had looked set to cut the gap at the top of the Premier League to three points but now their title hopes look shattered after Wolves' late show.

Tottenham’s shock 3-1 defeat at home to Wolves on Saturday did more than just dent their title hopes.

Spurs had looked to be in command after a dominant in first half in which Harry Kane had given them a deserved lead.

But Wolves hit back to equalise with a goal from Willy Boly 17 minutes from time, before Raul Jiminez and Helder Costa struck late on to silence all but a single corner of Wembley.

Defeat for Spurs meant the end of a run stretching back to April 2012 – it was their first loss against a newly promoted side since losing to Queens Park Rangers 39 games ago.

Mauricio Pochettino, meanwhile, had never lost to a newly-promoted side as a Premier League manager, having previously gone unbeaten in 27 matches as boss of Southampton and Tottenham.

It was also the first time Tottenham had lost from a winning position at home in the Premier League since Southampton won 2-1 at White Hart Lane in May 2016.

That result came just days after Spurs had conceded the title to Leicester City, and they now look to have done the same – Liverpool will go nine points clear of Mauricio Pochettino’s side if they beat Arsenal at Anfield on Saturday evening.

Tottenham had moved into second place in the Premier League only three days earlier, after they scored 11 times in two games to see off Everton and Bournemouth to leapfrog champions Manchester City and install themselves as Liverpool’s closest challengers.

But defeat to Wolves means they will drop back into third if City beat Southampton on Sunday.

Despite being comfortably in control after a strong first-half showing, Spurs fell apart after the break, failing to record a single shot on goal in the second 45 minutes as their five-game winning run in the Premier League game to an unlikely end.

Boly started the comeback for the visitors with a powerful header to cancel out Kane’s sublime opener, and soon Spurs were on the ropes.

Fingers were pointed at Spurs captain Hugo Lloris who failed to keep out Jimenez’s weak effort with the scores level at 1-1, and as the hosts chased a leveler to keep their slim title hopes alive Wolves caught them on the break and Costa slotted home to seal the win.

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