Harry Kane's 22nd Premier League goal of the season helped Tottenham move up to sixth following a routine 2-0 win over Wolves on Super Sunday.
Kane struck on the stroke of half-time after being released by Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, and the Dane tucked in Spurs' second following the interval after Rui Patricio had diverted Gareth Bale's shot straight into this path.
Fabio Silva endured a profligate afternoon in front of goal as he missed a gilt-edged chance to haul Wolves back into the contest, with Nuno Espirito Santo's side consigned to a 15th league defeat of the season.
The result sees Spurs leapfrog West Ham into sixth place on 59 points, five points adrift of Chelsea in fourth with two games remaining, while Wolves stay in 12th place.
Tottenham: Lloris (7), Tanganga (6), Dier (6), Alderweireld (7), Reguilon (7), Lo Celso (6), Hojbjerg (7), Bale (7), Alli (8), Son (6), Kane (7).
Subs: Winks (6), Sissoko (n/a), Ndombele (n/a).
Wolves: Rui Patricio (6), Nelson Semedo (6), Coady (8), Saiss (6), Hoever (5), Joao Moutinho (6), Dendoncker (6), Gibbs-White (6), Vitinha (5), Traore (7), Silva (4).
Subs: Neves (6), Willian Jose (5), Corbeanu (n/a).
Man of the match: Conor Coady.
How Spurs claimed sixth place
Defeat at Leeds last weekend meant Tottenham remained eight points shy of the top four heading into their remaining three games, so the message from interim boss Ryan Mason was clear before kick-off.
Only a win would do against a Wolves side who have failed to replicate the same level of performance that had seen them record back-to-back seventh-placed finishes in their previous two seasons.
- Ryan Mason praises 'excellent' Dele Alli | Nuno: We lacked discipline
- How the teams lined up | Match stats
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That Spurs remain in contention to qualify for the Europa League is largely down to Kane's precision and he was only denied an early opener when he struck the base of the post with a speculative drive from the edge of the box after just six minutes.
Nuno deployed a back four having made the same number of changes to his team, and they were set up to threaten on the counter with the pace of Adama Traore, who showcased his qualities with a bursting run away from the Spurs midfield moments later, but Silva dragged his shot wide via a deflection off Eric Dier.
The game descended into a Sunday stroll punctuated by Dele Alli's rediscovered vim and vigour as he waltzed past Leander Dendoncker on one occasion, but Kane was unable to convert his cross at the near post. The hosts upped the ante as Heung-Min Son drew a smart save from Patricio.
- Tottenham made just one change for the Premier League match against Wolves, with Japhet Tanganga coming in at right-back. The 22-year-old made his first start since April 4, getting the nod ahead of ex-Wolves man Matt Doherty in Serge Aurier's absence, with Ryan Mason naming an otherwise unchanged XI.
- Wolves made four changes with Romain Saiss, Nelson Semedo, Leander Dendocker and Adama Traore coming in.
As the interval approached, Conor Coady produced a miraculous double goal-line clearance to deny Kane after Patricio had spilled an initial corner, but Wolves' reprieve was short-lived as the Premier League's top scorer notched his 22nd of the season, collecting Hojbjerg's pass before rounding Patricio to score with aplomb.
After an anxious wait as VAR Stuart Attwell checked for offside, the goal stood. Sky Sports' Jamie Redknapp said: "The right-back was playing Kane onside and then it was complete panic from the Wolves defender and calmness from Harry Kane. It was brilliant. There was no panic, just brilliant forward play. Great players have more time than everyone else."
Wolves could only improve, and they fluffed a glorious chance to level five minutes after the restart as Vitinha's cross was headed straight at Hugo Lloris by the unmarked Romain Saiss. Spurs broke down the other end as Giovani Lo Celso found Sergio Reguilon, but his rising shot was tipped over by Patricio.
It signalled normal order to this affair being resumed and Mason was left scratching his head when Kane and Alli somehow contrived to strike both posts from the same phase of play. Alli broke free to run at the Wolves defence before threading the perfectly-weighted pass for Kane to strike across goal, but Patricio tipped his effort on to the woodwork before Alli's effort on the rebound also bounced back out off the post.
Tottenham would double their lead shortly after the hour mark, however. Ki-Jana Hoever was caught in possession as Reguilon was rewarded for his persistence, and after the Spaniard found Son the ball was worked across the edge of the box to Bale. His strike was pure, but appeared too close to Patricio, whose tame save allowed the ball to fall at the feet of Hojbjerg for a simple tap-in.
It was turning into another limp display from Wolves, but the visitors really ought to have found a route back within three minutes as Morgan Gibbs-White's low cross was dragged glaringly wide by the out-of-sorts Silva.
It was their best moment of the match, but another chance would swiftly follow as the tireless Traore cut inside Dier, having ran onto Hoever's measured pass, only to drag another effort off target.
Spurs had done the hard work and came close to a third when Japhet Tanganga rose to meet Son's corner only to power his header wide at the near post - but two was more than enough.
What the managers said
Tottenham interim boss Ryan Mason: "The most important thing is to win. Today our performance was excellent. We controlled the game. Our attacking players will be disappointed there weren't more goals - they deserved it.
"Even at 2-0 they had a couple of chances but overall we had control of the game. [Dele Alli is] professional. It's not easy for professional footballers to spend a long time on the sidelines. Dele has started the last three games - that says a lot about him. He loves football, he runs, he fights. He's disappointed he didn't get a goal - he deserved one. He had a really good game.
"This is Tottenham Hotspur. We want to be playing in the biggest competition in the biggest games. This season hasn't gone to plan. We really can't wait to play in front of our fans. Ten-thousand fans here will make a hell of a difference."
Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo: "It was a difficult game. Large parts of the game we played good and were organised, good possession. Couple of mistakes. But a tough game. We have to analyse but I'm disappointed with the manner we conceded, too easy.
"It was almost the end of the first half [first goal]. We were open and allowed a pass to break the lines. [We had] poor finishing, half-chances. We have to improve. We have two tough games to go. We have to react and keep on building and bringing the young players who are starting their careers."
Alli shows glimpses of his old self
Sky Sports' Ben Grounds at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium:
Tottenham supporters gathered in their numbers outside the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium again on Sunday to protest against owners ENIC and chairman Daniel Levy, but on the pitch, those who opted to remain at home witnessed Alli continuing his joyful renaissance under Mason.
A first half low on quality was lit up by the midfielder's deft touches to lose Dendoncker and Saiss on two separate occasions, and Alli relished playing in his preferred No 10 position. He ought to have buried the one chance which fell his way, unlucky to strike the post, but his application throughout will delight whoever takes charge of this famous club next season.
Redknapp: Alli is a quality player
Sky Sports' Jamie Redknapp:
"If Jose Mourinho doesn't pick you, it doesn't mean anything really. We saw what he did to Luke Shaw and look at the player he has turned into since he left. Jose seems to want to fall out with a lot of his players.
"Dele Alli is a quality player. He is 25 years of age, he averages nearly one [goal] in three games, and if you can't get him in the team...
"We've also seen Gareth Bale's form since Jose has gone and you think 'this is a manager who has won everything, you can't keep falling out with your players all the time'. The reason is, he likes to look at everyone else rather than himself."
Man of the match - Conor Coady
It is rare to name a player on the losing team as the outstanding performer, but were it not for Coady's organisation and concentration throughout, Wolves would have been on the receiving end of a heavy defeat.
The centre-half produced a strong case for inclusion in Gareth Southgate's England squad for the European Championships, if his place was not rubber-stamped already, making an extraordinary 13 clearances and two blocks.
Toothless Wolves - Opta stats
- Tottenham have won each of their first three home league matches under Ryan Mason. Mason is the first Spurs boss to do so since Harry Redknapp in November 2008.
- Wolves have failed to score in 12 Premier League matches this season, the most games in which they have failed to net in a Premier League campaign since 2011-12 (13).
- Tottenham had 24 shots in this match, 13 of which were on target - both figures exceed any amount they had in a single Premier League match under previous manager Jose Mourinho.
- Wolves faced 13 shots on target in this match - since 2003-04, only against West Brom in February 2012 have they ever faced more in a Premier League match (14).
- Since winning three of their first five away games in the Premier League in 2020-21, Wolves have only won two of their last 13 on the road in the competition (D5 L6).
- Wolves' Fabio Silva had seven shots in this match, the most by a teenager in a Premier League match since Mason Greenwood's seven for Manchester United vs Cardiff in May 2019 - the last teenager to exceed seven shots in a Premier League match was Giuseppe Rossi for Manchester United vs Charlton in May 2006.
Live Premier League
Live Premier League
Tottenham host Aston Villa in the Premier League on Wednesday, live on Sky Sports Main Event; kick-off is at 6pm. Wolves travel to face Everton on Wednesday, live on Sky Sports Premier League, at the same kick-off time.