Tottenham 2-0 Arsenal: Heung-Min Son and Harry Kane fire as Spurs shutout north London rivals

Report as first-half goals from Heung-Min Son and Harry Kane secure north London derby win for Tottenham over Arsenal and returns Jose Mourinho's side back to the top of the Premier League table.

Goalscorer Harry Kane celebrates with Heung-min Son
Image: Harry Kane and Heung-Min Son were once again on target for Tottenham

Heung-Min Son and Harry Kane were Tottenham's heroes once again, firing their side back to the top of the Premier League table with a 2-0 win over rivals Arsenal in front of 2,000 fans.

The spectators permitted into the South Stand, following easing of coronavirus restrictions, were treated to a clinical victory over their neighbours - and more brilliant link-up play between Spurs' star men.

Son (13) curled in a delicious opener after being assisted by Kane for the eighth time in the Premier League this season, before returning the favour as Kane (45+1) slammed in the second to become the top scorer in north London derby history, with his 11th strike against the Gunners.

Arsenal dominated possession and territory throughout but once again their disjointed attack failed to fire or fashion any real clear-cut openings. That's just two goals in seven top-flight games for Arsenal now, and their sixth defeat in their last nine Premier League games leaving them 15th in the table.

Player ratings

Tottenham: Lloris (8), Aurier (8), Alderweireld (8), Dier (8), Reguilon (8), Sissoko (7), Hojbjerg (9), Son (9), Lo Celso (8), Bergwijn (7), Kane (9).

Subs used: Davies (6), Lucas (n/a), Rodon (n/a)

Arsenal: Leno (5), Holding (5), Gabriel (6), Tierney (6), Bellerin (6), Partey (5), Xhaka (5), Saka (6), Willian (5), Lacazette (5), Aubameyang (4).

Subs used: Ceballos (6), Nketiah (6)

Man of the match: Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (Tottenham)

How Spurs beat Arsenal in front of their fans

Tottenham fans were back in their home stadium for the first time since March 4 and they were cheering inside a couple of seconds when Alexandre Lacazette hit the ball straight out of play from the kick-off.

Arsenal had just one win from six Premier League games going into this one and their nerves against their high-flying neighbours were evident just a couple of minutes later when Granit Xhaka resorted to a rugby tackle to bring down Kane 30 yards from goal.

Heung-min Son in action during the north London derby at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Image: Son in action during the north London derby at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

Arsenal were right to be wary of Spurs' threat up front but Rob Holding gave Son far too much room as the attacker broke down the left flank before stepping in on his right and bending a brilliant shot in at the far corner from 25 yards.

Also See:

Team news

  • Toby Alderweireld was fit to start, but Tanguy Ndombele missed out with injury
  • Thomas Partey returned to the starting XI, and was joined by Alexandre Lacazette and Rob Holding as Mikel Arteta made three changes

Kane had set Son on his way for the opener, his 10th assist in 11 games in the Premier League this term.

Arsenal struggled to click at the other end, with boss Mikel Arteta showing his frustration on the touchline whenever play broke down, while Spurs remained a threat on the counter, with Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg thundering a shot at Bernd Leno.

Hojbjerg was exceptional at the other end, repeatedly disrupting Arsenal - although, the Gunners had appeals for Giovanni Lo Celso to be sent off when he fouled Lacazette on the edge of the Spurs box moments after being booked for a challenge on Willian. Lo Celso had in fact won the ball and a second yellow would have been harsh.

Lacazette wasted the free-kick, shooting wide, and although Arsenal had 62 per cent of first-half possession and played most of the game in Spurs' half, it was Jose Mourinho's side who struck again just before the break.

Image: Harry Kane celebrates his strike - the 250th of his career

Thomas Partey - back in the side after four games out with a thigh injury - stepped off the pitch with an injury problem, but then looked on as Spurs counter-attacked into the space he'd vacated, with Lo Celso slipping in Son, who teed up Kane to smash in a second with his left-foot off the underside of the bar. That was the 250th goal of his career, and 100th at home for Spurs.

Harry Kane and Heung-Min Son have moved up to second on the list of Premier League goal combinations
Image: Harry Kane and Heung-Min Son have moved up to second on the list of Premier League goal combinations

Arsenal came out for the second half searching for an immediate response, with Lacazette flicking a header goalwards before Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang headed another cross over and Willian went off target with an ambitious overhead. But once again, despite dominating the ball, Arsenal couldn't carve out major openings and their frustration grew.

Kieran Tierney had a spat with some Spurs subs who were warming up, Xhaka went in the book for clattering Son, and, after being denied by a brilliant defensive header from Serge Aurier, Lacazette was shown a yellow for bringing down Son.

Spurs only had one shot in the second half but their defensive work was what mattered and the returning Toby Alderweireld summed up the commitment from the hosts with an excellent block to deny Aubameyang on 84 minutes.

By the final whistle, Arsenal had fired off almost twice as many shots and recorded nearly 70 per cent possession. But the Spurs fans heading home happy after watching their side for the first time in nine months didn't care one bit.

Man of the Match - Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg

Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg must be one of the first names on the teamsheet for Jose Mourinho right now. The Spurs midfielder encapsulates just what the manager wants from his team - and against Arsenal on Sunday his commitment and class was a key element in another north London derby triumph.

Hojbjerg covered the most ground of any Spurs player - no surprise given he was thundering a shot at Bernd Leno or driving a dribble into the Arsenal box one moment and then back making interceptions or clearing from inside his own area the next.

With the ball at his feet Hojbjerg was precise - no Spurs starter topped his 79.5 per cent passing accuracy. Without it he was relentless in his pressing and energy.

If this Spurs side are a blend of the brilliant, high-speed attacking movements of Kane and Son, and the backs-to-the-walls defence marshalled by Toby Alderweireld, Hojbjerg is the engine room in between making it all work together so impressively.

What's next?

Tottenham host Royal Antwerp in the Europa League on Thursday before travelling to Crystal Palace for a 2.15pm clash on Sunday, live on Sky Sports Premier League. Arsenal are away to Dundalk in the Europa League on Thursday, with Burnley at home on Sunday, live on Sky Sports Premier League at 7.15pm.

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