Harry Kane’s record-breaking goal fired 10-man Tottenham to a 1-0 win over Manchester City to further dent the champions’ titles hopes.
Kane slotted home after quarter of an hour to break the deadlock and move past Jimmy Greaves as Spurs’ all-time leading marksman, having gone level with the late forward against Fulham two weeks ago.
It proved enough to keep up Tottenham’s excellent record against City, who could have gone within two points of leaders Arsenal following their defeat at Everton on Saturday.
The numbers tell the story 💙@HKane: Tottenham Hotspur's all-time record goalscorer pic.twitter.com/slXtqtdU2C
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) February 5, 2023
Fifth-placed Spurs instead claimed a third victory from their last four matches against Pep Guardiola’s side despite Cristian Romero’s late red card to aid the recovery of absent manager Antonio Conte, who is still in Italy after having his gallbladder removed on Wednesday.
Despite Conte recovering from surgery, he was involved in team selection and deadline-day signing Pedro Porro was only on the bench for Spurs with City surprisingly naming Kevin De Bruyne amongst the substitutes too.
The visitors had seen title rivals Arsenal drop points 24 hours earlier and signalled their intentions with Riyad Mahrez and Julian Alvarez having shots blocked in the opening exchanges.
City were dominating possession but they soon felt the familiar feeling of trailing to Tottenham and it proved a record-breaking goal.
Eric Dier urged his team-mates to press higher and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg stole in ahead of Rico Lewis outside the away penalty area before he passed into the path of Kane, who scuffed an effort beyond Ederson and into the corner.
It moved Kane past Greaves as the club’s all-time leading scorer with 267 goals for Spurs and saw jubilant celebrations both on and off the pitch with the screens inside the stadium acknowledging his achievement before the forward waved to his family in the West Stand.
Bookings followed with Rodrigo Bentancur and Romero cautioned in quick succession, the latter for clattering into peripheral figure Erling Haaland.
Tottenham assistant Cristian Stellini was attempting to match the animated presence of the absence Conte on the touchline but saw his side enjoy a slice of luck before the break.
After Rodri and Jack Grealish had failed to find the net with curled efforts late in the half, Mahrez sent a stinging half-volley crashing against the crossbar from 12 yards that bounced away to safety to ensure Spurs were ahead at the break for the first time at home since October 12.
Ben Davies headed wide for the hosts at the start of the second period before Guardiola turned to De Bruyne with 57 minutes played.
De Bruyne’s first real involvement saw his short free-kick find Alvarez, who saw a low shot diverted over by Dier’s thigh.
It sparked a frantic spell with Romero blocking Manuel Akanji’s shot and seconds later Ivan Perisic’s cross agonisingly evaded the Argentina defender and Kane at the back post.
Kane was in the thick of the action minutes later, sending one effort wide before Ederson denied him after Tottenham’s record scorer had bulldozed his way past Kyle Walker and Akanji.
More drama was to follow with referee Andrew Madley showing Romero a second yellow card for a foul on Grealish before five minutes of stoppage time was added on.
Despite plenty of City possession, it was Tottenham who held firm to move within a point of the top four and do rivals Arsenal a favour in the title race.