Norwich impress at White Hart Lane

Anthony Pilkington (left)

Anthony Pilkington (left)

First published in National Sport News © by

Norwich have put a big dent in Tottenham's Champions League ambitions with an impressive 2-1 Barclays Premier League victory at White Hart Lane.

The Canaries broke the deadlock through Anthony Pilkington and manager Paul Lambert was furious when his team were denied a blatant penalty when Ledley King clambered over Grant Holt in the Spurs box.

His anger intensified moments later when Jermain Defoe equalised, but the Canaries boss had the last laugh when Elliott Bennett hammered a powerful drive through a sea of defenders to inflict a massive defeat on the home side.

Tottenham, perhaps fatigued after Saturday's energy-sapping draw at Sunderland, lacked venom in attack with Gareth Bale their only threat going forward, while in defence they were terribly shoddy.

With just one win in their last eight league games, they seem destined to throw away their chance of dining at Europe's top table and, with the way they are playing at the moment, they may well end up not even qualifying for the Europa League.

Norwich, who became only the third team other than both Manchester sides to win at Spurs this year, were creative, organised and very clinical and Lambert's stock will rightly rise after this impressive victory.

A defensive lapse allowed the Canaries to take a shock lead with 12 minutes gone. Younes Kaboul blocked Aaron Wilbraham's shot and Kyle Walker went to clear, but his attempt ricocheted off King into the path of Pilkington, who calmly stroked the ball past Brad Friedel.

Friedel tipped Pilkington's wicked cross just wide and Bradley Johnson fired a free-kick into the wall. Bale galloped past Russell Martin and sent a low ball across the box that just evaded Defoe's tap-in.

Then, with half an hour gone, King tangled with Grant Holt in the Norwich box but referee Michael Oliver's whistle stayed silent. Spurs then raced up the other end and equalised. Defoe latched on to a slide-rule pass from Jake Livermore and chipped over John Ruddy.

Emmanuel Adebayor replaced Louis Saha at half-time and Spurs started the second half strongly but were stunned as Norwich took the lead again through Bennett's first Premier League goal. Martin ventured forward to lay the ball off to the former Brighton man and he thumped a 20-yard strike beyond Friedel.

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