Tottenham moved up to second in the Premier League after Son Heung-min’s late strike saw them edge past a resolute Newcastle side on Saturday.
The victory saw them take the lead in the last ten minutes for the third time in three games, after squeezing past Watford and Fulham over the last week to move above Manchester City in the table.
Here are four things we learned from Saturday’s encounter.
1. Son Heung-min is Saving Spurs’ Season
Son has only been back with Tottenham for two games after being on international duty with South Korea in recent weeks.
However, he has not taken long to re-assert his importance to his team. His goal against Watford inspired Spurs’ late comeback win, and he pulled off some similar heroics on Saturday to score his ninth goal in his last ten appearances.
His long-range strike, which was spilled by the Magpies’ shot-stopper Martin Dubravka, meant that the hosts snatched three points at the death once again.
2. Newcastle’s Defensive Discipline Deserved a Point
Rafael Benitez’s side came into the game full of confidence after a come-from-behind-win of their own against champions Manchester City last Tuesday.
Newcastle’s players were content to sit behind the ball, defending en masse in an effort to frustrate and stifle Spurs in attack. They achieved this for much of the contest, and were unlucky not to see their efforts rewarded with at least a point.
The determined attitude of the visitors was perhaps best summed up by the efforts of centre-back Fabian Schar, as the Swiss international cleared Christian Eriksen’s effort off the line, but Dubravka’s error meant that the Magpies left Wembley empty-handed.
3. Tottenham Are Grinding Out Results Despite Injuries
The quality and depth of Mauricio Pochettino’s squad has come under scrutiny in recent weeks following injuries to key offensive pair Harry Kane and Dele Alli.
However, with three wins in their last three Premier League games, Spurs have delivered a resounding response to the critics who said they would struggle without the talismanic Kane.
Although they have been knocked out of both the Carabao Cup and the FA Cup in the past two weeks, they have managed to grind out enough wins in the league to move above Manchester City, who host Arsenal on Sunday.
4. Newcastle Have the Quality to Avoid Relegation
Newcastle once again impressed against a side in the established top six, after condemning City to a shock loss last time out.
They were equally impressive against Tottenham even if they did not get the reward that their collective team spirit and admirable resilience deserved, as they were on the back foot for almost the entirety of the match.
They could have taken the lead at the start of the second half, but Salomon Rondon’s leaping header bounced off the woodwork, leaving the Magpies without a win at Wembley in their last eight visits.