English Premiership

Tottenham sink QPR

2015-03-07 19:06
Harry Kane (Supplied)
Harry Kane (Supplied)

London - Harry Kane enhanced his England credentials as Tottenham Hotspur won 2-1 at Queens Park Rangers on Saturday to move to within three points of the Premier League's top four.

Watched by England manager Roy Hodgson, Kane took his season goal tally to 26 with a goal in each half, making him the country's leading scorer in all competitions.

Spurs old boy Sandro pulled one back in the 75th minute, but despite a strong late penalty appeal, Chris Ramsey's QPR were unable to avoid a defeat that leaves them three points from safety in the bottom three.

Having exited the Europa League and lost to Chelsea in last weekend's League Cup final, Tottenham's sole remaining aim is to force their way into the top four and claim a place in next season's Champions League.

The odds remain stacked against them, but they retain hope, especially if Kane maintains his outstanding scoring form.

The 21-year-old is enjoying an outstanding campaign and the growing clamour for him to be included in Hodgson's senior squad for this month's games against Lithuania and Italy will only increase after this display.

Hodgson was also keeping tabs on QPR's uncapped striker Charlie Austin, who had scored one more league goal than Kane coming into this game and was unlucky not to add to that tally when he hit the post in the first half.

It was Kane, though, who caught the eye, twice capitalising on defensive errors to secure a hard-fought victory.

The goals summed up the plight of the two sides, with Tottenham capable of taking the opportunities presented to them while Ramsey's men were guilty of contributing to their own downfall.

QPR had come back into the game impressively after a bright Tottenham start when they gifted Kane the simplest of opportunities in the 34th minute.

Andros Townsend swung in a routine free kick from the right that goalkeeper Robert Green appeared to misjudge, allowing Kane to easily head home from close range.

Ramsey's side seemed deflated and they would have been out of the game had Christian Eriksen's shot not rebounded away to safety off the post two minutes after the restart.

It was to their credit, then, that they rallied impressively, with Spurs' goalkeeper Hugo Lloris once again called upon to protect his side's lead, this time by repelling a powerful shot from Bobby Zamora.

The hosts, though, were too vulnerable to Tottenham's attacking strengths and Austin had already been forced to clear off his own line before Kane added the second goal in the 68th minute.

Once again the forward exposed the home side's lack of concentration by easily springing the offside trap to collect Ryan Mason's through ball before rounding Green and finishing into an empty net.

But Ramsey's side were not finished, hauling themselves back into the game through Sandro's well-placed strike, and seeing a strong penalty claim dismissed when Nabil Bentaleb appeared to handle Austin's shot.

Junior Hoilett came off the bench for the home side and sent a good opportunity flying over the bar, further highlighting the difference in quality between the two sides in front of goal.

Tottenham's top-four dream remains alive, but QPR now face an increasingly desperate fight to avoid an immediate return to the Championship.


 

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