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Barclays Premier League

White Hart Lane (ATT 35,798) 29th April 2012 - Kick off 16:00 Ref: M Jones

Tottenham Tottenham Hotspur vs Blackburn Rovers Blackburn

Tottenham 2

R van der Vaart (22)
K Walker (75)

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Rovers have sinking feeling

Van der Vaart and Walker goals push Rovers closer to the drop

Last Updated: 29/04/12 9:39pm

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Rafael van der Vaart and Kyle Walker scored in either half as Spurs reignited their bid for UEFA Champions League football and pushed Blackburn closer to the drop.

Man of the match: Kyle Walker not only scored a memorable second-half goal to seal a crucial three points for Spurs, but he also provided a constant spark and threat throughout the contest Goal of the match: In the 75th minute, Walker showed exactly why he was named PFA Young Player of the Year by curling a beautifully struck free-kick into the top corner of the net, giving Paul Robinson no chance Attempt of the match: Sandro was impressive throughout and deserved a goal when his ferocious early strike from just outside the box rattled the bar Save of the match: In a game with so few shots on target, Scott Dann wins this accolade with his header which deflected Bale's effort against the bar. However, it proved immaterial as Rafael van der Vaart prodded home the rebound Talking point: Blackburn failed to register a single shot - either off or on target - despite needing points in the battle for survival and questions must be asked about Steve Kean's dour defensive tactics at this stage of the season

Van der Vaart notched the opener on 22 minutes at White Hart Lane when slotting home from close range after Gareth Bale's header from a cross hit the bar.

Walker then curled home a fantastic free-kick with 15 minutes remaining to make sure of the points and hand Spurs a first league win in four games.

The victory takes Harry Redknapp's side back into fourth in the Premier League on goal difference, while second-from-bottom Blackburn remain three points from safety.

In more depressing reading for Rovers' fans, Steve Kean's side did not manage a single effort on goal - the first time that has happened in a top-flight match since 2004.

Spurs should have taken the lead in the opening minute as Luka Modric skipped into the box and squared for Aaron Lennon, who could only fire into the side-netting from five yards out.

The home side had a stranglehold on proceedings from the off and Sandro almost put them in front in the ninth minute, but his long-range effort came back off the crossbar with former Spurs goalkeeper Paul Robinson well beaten.

Dominate possession

Redknapp's side continued to dominate possession and worked the ball well down both flanks but the final ball into the box was lacking on almost every occasion.

They finally got it right in the 22nd minute as Lennon's cross was met by the head of Bale with his effort bouncing off the crossbar and to the feet of Van der Vaart, who tapped home from close range.

Blackburn had no answer to the constant attacking threat being posed by their Champions League-chasing opponents as the play continued to be almost constantly in the Rovers' half.

Robinson showed quick reactions to close down Danny Rose as the young full-back burst through from the left side of the area after a neat interchange with Modric.

Gael Givet then cleared a Van der Vaart free-kick with Spurs again building up a head of steam in search for their second goal.

It almost came from the resulting corner as captain William Gallas glanced a header on to the crossbar, which came to Blackburn's rescue once again.

One-sided

The second half started in the same one-sided manner as the first and it was Lennon who again came close to scoring for Spurs.

Following a neat back-heel from Van der Vaart, Modric drove forward and his pass eventually found Lennon, whose shot hit the side-netting.

Despite their clear superiority, the hosts were not creating chances on a regular basis and Blackburn's defence did not appear to be overstretched.

Modric dragged a shot wide on the hour and Bale followed suit moments later after a quick counter-attack caught Rovers short at the back.

Yakubu was becoming a very isolated figure as the rest of Kean's side worked to close Spurs down all over the pitch and he was getting little joy from his lone tussle with both Gallas and Younes Kaboul.

As the game wore on, the Blackburn players looked to tire and more fouls were conceded as a result, Kean then introduced striker Anthony Modeste as a direct replacement for Yakubu to jeers from the travelling Rovers fans.

Another foul was conceded by the visitors in the 74th minute when David Dunn brought down Lennon, with full-back Walker looking to take aim.

The recently-crowned PFA Young Player of the Year did not disappoint as he hit an unstoppable 30-yard free-kick past Robinson as Spurs finally managed to double their lead.

That really killed the game as a contest as Blackburn never looked like scoring and did not give former goalkeeper Brad Friedel anything to do in his 301st successive league start.

Tottenham HotspurTeam StatisticsBlackburn Rovers
2Goals0
11st Half Goals0
5Shots on Target0
11Shots off Target0
3Blocked Shots0
6Corners1
7Fouls15
1Offsides2
0Yellow Cards0
0Red Cards0
89.2Passing Success70.5
22Tackles21
86.4Tackles Success81
70.7Possession29.3
69.6Territorial Advantage30.4
694Total Passes281
33Total Crosses9
155Lost Balls157
67Recoveries47
01st Half Poss.0
02nd Half Poss.0

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Matches

Table

Barclays Premier League

Barclays Premier League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Chelsea 17 42
2 Manchester City 17 39
3 Manchester United 17 32
4 West Ham United 17 31
5 Southampton 17 29
6 Arsenal 17 27
7 Tottenham Hotspur 17 27
8 Swansea City 17 25
9 Newcastle United 17 23
10 Liverpool 17 22
11 Everton 17 21
12 Aston Villa 17 20
13 Stoke City 17 19
14 Sunderland 17 19
15 West Bromwich Albion 17 17
16 Queens Park Rangers 17 17
17 Crystal Palace 17 15
18 Burnley 17 15
19 Hull City 17 13
20 Leicester City 17 10

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