Dele Alli’s first-half penalty was enough for Tottenham to beat Wolves 1-0 as Harry Kane made his first appearance of the season.
The England midfielder won the spot kick after going over Jose Sa’s legs but it seemed harsh on the hosts. All the talk before the match surrounded Kane and Nuno Espirito Santo opted to start him on the bench. Spurs were unchanged from the side that beat Manchester City last weekend.
Nelson Semedo came into the Wolves team as Bruno Lage opted for a four-man defence with Ki-Jana Hoever on the bench. Raul Jimenez made his first Molineux appearance for nine months but it was the visitors who took the lead.
Alli seemed to fall over Jose Sa but picked himself up to bury the spot kick on nine minutes. That would have been Kane’s to take had the England striker been on the pitch.
It was the midfielder’s first Premier League goal since March 2020 and the award was marginal to say the least. Wolves felt they should have been awarded a penalty of their own just minutes later as Oliver Skipp appeared to foul Semedo.
However, referee Stuart Attwell disagreed. The match continued at an upbeat tempo, with the Molineux faithful right behind their heroes.
Every touch Jimenez made was cheered to the rafters and he almost obliged for his adoring fans on 27 minutes. The Mexican’s curling shot was just a yard over the bar, however.
Tottenham’s tactics became clear as the half wore on, with multiple long balls over the top. But the Wolves rearguard were untroubled and dealt with the threat.
Adama Traore began to boss the game as Wolves became more and more dominant. And a frustrated Japhet Tanganga was the first player in the referee’s notebook as he clattered Marcal.
The Wolves man manged to get up but looked the worse for wear. Skipp soon followed him into the book as Traore continued to torment the Spurs players with his skill and pace.
Ruben Neves took the resulting free-kick but Hugo Lloris dealt well with his long-range effort. Wolves were unlucky to be 1-0 down at half-time having played their part in a entertaining 45 minutes.
The hosts began the second period in a similar manner, with Spurs forwards struggling to get any real possession. And Semedo got the home fans out of the seats with a shot that flashed wide of the top corner on 52 minutes.
But the Londoners did finally get some joy as Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg released Son Heung-min on the right. Max Kilman’s timely sliding tackle prevented a certain goal.
Nuno’s men should have been level on 61 minutes when Traore found himself one-on-one with Lloris. The Frenchman won the battle, however, keeping the ball out with his feet.
Kane back in business
And then the moment arrived that all Spurs fans wanted, as Kane entered the arena on 71 minutes to applause from the visiting fans. It took the England skipper 10 minutes to get his first sight of goal.
Bergwijn did well to hold off three Wolves players before finding the striker. But Sa managed to prevent what would have been a popular goal among the visiting fans.
The result means Spurs have won two from two but Wolves will consider themselves extremely unlucky not to have taken at least a point.
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