Premier League - Crouch scores twice in Spurs win

Sat, 09 Apr 15:57:00 2011

Tottenham Hotspur found the perfect response to their crushing European defeat by getting back to winning ways in the Premier League by beating Stoke City 3-2 in a thrilling clash at White Hart Lane.

Match Highlights:

Peter Crouch and Luka Modric had Tottenham two goals up within 20 minutes before former Spurs winger Matthew Etherington pulled one back. Crouch then headed in his second of the game on 34 minutes, only for Kenwyne Jones to again reduce the deficit to one goal in the run-up to half-time.

After a poor run which saw them fail to beat any of the Premier League's bottom four and then lose 4-0 at Real Madrid in their Champions League quarter-final first leg, this win at least keeps Tottenham within five points of fourth-placed Chelsea.

Stoke drop one place to 12th following West Brom's win at Sunderland, although next week's FA Cup semi-final against Bolton, rather than their league position, will be at the forefront of the Potters' minds.

Crouch went some way towards atoning for his red card at the Bernabeu by opening the scoring on 11 minutes when Rafael van der Vaart played a short corner to Roman Pavlyuchenko before the Russian's cross was headed past Asmir Begovic by the England striker.

Pavlyuchenko created his team's second too when he played the ball into the run of Modric, who finished smartly through the legs of Begovic for only his second league goal of the season.

Stoke had been on the receiving end during that blistering early spell, but they were back in the match on 27 minutes via a terrific solo effort from Etherington, who surged past Tom Huddlestone into the box and fired low past Heurelho Gomes.

Crouch restored Tottenham's two-goal advantage seven minutes later to wrap up a good team move instigated by van der Vaart. Benoit Assou-Ekotto pinged a delightful crossfield ball to Huddlestone, who in turn picked out Crouch at the far post.

Jones then again brought the visitors back into it after Gareth Bale was caught dithering by Andy Wilkinson. The ball broke for Jones, who beat Younes Kaboul and lashed a left-footed effort into the near top corner.

Although there were no more goals after the break, both sides continued to entertain. Jon Walters should have drawn Stoke level when he found himself free inside the six-yard box, but he could only direct Jones's cross on to the post off his thigh.

Pavlyuchenko steered a diving header wide of the near post, then had his close range finish disallowed after Kaboul had knocked the ball out of Begovic's hands.

Jones had an ambitious strike from range tipped over the bar by Gomes, but Stoke could not complete the comeback and the final whistle heralded their seventh straight league defeat on the road.

Tony Mabert / Eurosport

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