Spurs all but through despite unconvincing display.
Tottenham Hotspur have one and a half feet in the next round of the Europa League this evening after a second successive victory over Greek minnows Asteras Tripolis, but they were made to work hard for the win by a team who played some impressive stuff on a dreadful pitch in Southern Greece.
Tottenham player ratings Asteras
Indeed, it was only their control over the game in the first half that allowed Mauricio Pochettino’s side to escape with the three points, with young attacking duo Harry Kane and Andros Townsend proving to be too much for an inexperienced home defence to deal with during the first period.
Having weathered a couple of early half chances for Asteras, Tottenham began to take control of the game and deserve their lead when it came, Andros Townsend picking himself up to blast home a penalty after he had been crudely brought down in the corner of the penalty area:
Within minutes the lead had been doubled as Asteras heads began to drop, Townsend again at the heart of it as he whipped in a stunning cross towards Harry Kane, with the in-form striker obliging and heading the ball beyond the goalkeeper to all but seal the points for Spurs:
The second half, however, was a toil from the start for the visitors as Asteras squandered a host of chances in the early stages, blazing wide when clean through and seeing the post come to Spurs’ rescue when stand in goalkeeper Michel Vorm was beaten.
Asteras certainly deserved a goal for their efforts and got it late on, with Federico Fazio picking up his second red card of the season late on for a soft foul on Jeronimo when he was clean through, with the player picking himself up to smash home a penalty. Despite a couple of scares, however, Spurs held on and are now well on their way to qualification.