Soldado gives Spurs first win
Roberto Soldado (AP Photo)
London - Spain striker Roberto Soldado's penalty on his Premier League debut gave Tottenham Hotspur a 1-0 win at Crystal Palace in their opening match of the season on Sunday.
Spurs, who were not awarded a single penalty last season, were given the spot kick early in the second half for an unfortunate handball by Palace defender Dean Moxey as he tried to block a dangerous Aaron Lennon cross.
Soldado then coolly slotted his effort inside Julian Speroni's right hand post with the keeper going the other way.
Argentine Speroni was the busier keeper helping to keep Spurs at bay especially with a brilliant leap to tip over a shot from midfielder Gylfi Sigurdsson in the first half.
Tottenham were guilty of a string of near misses that would have settled the match long before a nerve-wracking final few minutes in which they were indebted to goalkeeper Hugo Lloris for a double save from Kagisho Dikgacoi.
Nacer Chadli, another of Spurs' new signings, headed over the bar from close range in first half added time and Sigurdsson's low shot in the 69th was out of the diving Speroni's reach but also just wide of the far post.
Spurs substitute Jermain Defoe also shot wide of the same post in the 88th after a jinking run through the Palace defence.
Later on Sunday Jose Mourinho's eagerly-anticipated return to the Premier League gets under way as his Chelsea side host promoted Hull City.