Premier League: Tottenham 2 Everton 2
By Football News
A late equaliser from Gylfi Sigurdsson salvaged a point for Tottenham against Everton at White Hart Lane, in a 2-2 draw.
David Moyes' visitors had fought back brilliantly to take a surprise lead after going a goal down in the first minute, before Tottenham's Icelandic midfielder made it all square on 87 minutes.
A fabulous individual goal in the second half from Kevin Mirallas had made it 2-1 to the Toffees, after a frantic opening to the match. Emmanuel Adebayor had put Tottenham ahead in the first minute following brilliant play by Jan Vertonghen, before Phil Jagielka drew the visitors level after 15 minutes.
Gareth Bale's absence to injury certainly affected Tottenham as their Champions League qualification aspirations were knocked slightly off course by an in-form Everton.
The Welshman has been pivotal for the north Londoners this season - in fact the last time Spurs won a match that he has not scored in was on New Year's Day when they beat Reading 3-1.
The hosts were also without Aaron Lennon and Jermain Defoe, while Moyes was forced into making changes as Marouane Fellaini and Steven Pienaar served the second of their two-match bans.
Andre Villas-Boas' men made a blistering start to the game to go 1-0 up through Adebayor after just 33 seconds, as the Togo international diverted Vertonghen's enticing cross past Tim Howard after evading the attention of Sylvain Distin.
Everton reacted well to going behind though, and in the 15th minute they made their pressure pay when Jagielka equalised from a corner. The former Sheffield United centre-back rose highest at the back post to head Leighton Baines' lofted cross past the despairing dive of Hugo Lloris.
The home team wanted a penalty shortly before the break when Clint Dempsey's cross from the right was blocked in unorthodox fashion by the chest of Darron Gibson, but had their appeals promptly dismissed by Andre Marriner.
After Mousa Dembele and Vertonghen had impressed in the first half, it was Everton's own Belgium international - Mirallas - that lit up the game soon after the interval.
Fresh from his wonderful solo effort against Stoke City last weekend, Mirallas repeated the trick with a magnificent goal in the 53rd minute to put Everton ahead. He left a cluster of Spurs defenders trailing in his wake as he twisted and turned his way into the box on the right, before firing a crisp low shot into the bottom left corner.
Minutes later, Spurs thought they had equalised through Dembele, only for his deflected effort from distance to be tipped on to the crossbar brilliantly by Howard.
Villas-Boas' side continued to threaten and both Kyle Walker and Dempsey came close to levelling midway through the half, before Sigurdsson smashed a shot past Howard to make it 2-2 after an effort from Adebayor had crashed back off the post and into his path.
Spurs remain in third - two points ahead of Arsenal - although they have played one game more than their north London rivals.