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Newcastle United 1-2 Tottenham: Spurs win Premier League opener

Last Updated August 11 2018, 14:15Football
Spurs get off the mark: Ben Davies, Harry Kane and Dele Alli (left to right) celebrate at Newcaste
Spurs get off the mark: Ben Davies, Harry Kane and Dele Alli (left to right) celebrate at Newcaste

Tottenham made a winning start to the 2018/19 Premier League season with a 2-1 victory over Newcastle at St James' Park.

A thrilling first 20 minutes saw all three of the game's goals scored.

The visitors needed just eight minutes to get their noses in front when, after Magpies goalkeeper Martin Dubravka had turned away a Christian Eriksen shot, the Denmark international delivered the resulting corner for defender Davinson Sanchez to attack.

The Colombian's header down was met at the far post by Jan Vertonghen under pressure from Paul Dummett and the ball ricocheted down from the crossbar, with referee Martin Atkinson awarding the goal after being alerted that the ball had crossed the line.

Tottenham celebrate at St James' Park
Tottenham celebrate at St James' Park

However, the lead lasted just three minutes as Joselu rewarded manager Rafael Benitez for his faith in picking him ahead of summer signings Salomon Rondon and Yoshinori Muto.

Matt Ritchie cut back on to his left foot and curled in a cross which the striker met unopposed to glance a header past Hugo Lloris.

Spurs continued to dominate possession and regained their lead with just 18 minutes played when full-back Serge Aurier drove a cross to the far post for the unmarked England international Alli - who overcame any post-World Cup rustiness - to power a header past Dubravka.

Substitute Rondon, a loan signing from West Brom this week, almost snatched a point five minutes from time when his shot hit Vertonghen and looped over Lloris, only for the ball to come back off the crossbar.

No signings this summer? No problem for Mauricio Pochettino's men, who are 11/1 with Sky Bet to win the Premier League title and 4/6 for a top-four finish.

Newcastle v Tottenham Opta match facts

  • Tottenham have won four of their last five Premier League away games against Newcastle (L1) – one more than they’d won in their previous 19 trips to St James’ Park in the competition (W3 D5 L11).
  • Newcastle have lost five of their last six opening games to a league season, drawing the other vs Southampton in 2015-16.
  • Tottenham have scored in 25 of their last 26 Premier League games against Newcastle, failing only in a 0-1 home defeat in November 2013.
  • The first three shots on target in this match all came in the opening 18 minutes and were all scored, while none of the following four were converted.
  • Tottenham’s Dele Alli has scored in 33 different Premier League games and never ended on the losing side (W27 D6). Only James Milner (47) and Darius Vassell (46) have ever scored in more without losing.
  • Tottenham defender Jan Vertonghen’s goal was his first in 161 Premier League games, since netting against Swansea in March 2013.
  • Tottenham’s Harry Kane has never scored a Premier League goal in August, despite playing 14 games, 988 minutes and attempting 46 shots.
  • Joselu also scored Newcastle’s opening Premier League goal in 2017-18 – he’s the first player to score the Magpies’ first goal in consecutive Premier League seasons.

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Odds correct as of 1435 BST on 11/08/18

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