South Korea forward Son Heung-min scored his 100th Tottenham goal in a 3-0 win over Leeds that hauled his team back into the Premier League title race on Saturday.
Son grabbed the second goal for Jose Mourinho’s side after Harry Kane’s penalty had opened the scoring at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
Reaching his century of Tottenham goals was a landmark moment for Son, who is the 18th player to score 100 in all competitions for the north London club and the first from outside the United Kingdom and Ireland.
Since arriving from Bayer Leverkusen in 2015, the 28-year-old has established himself as one of Tottenham’s key players and maintaining his fine form will be key to their hopes of pushing for the title.
Toby Alderweireld scored Tottenham’s third goal as they climbed to third place.
The only frustration for Mourinho was a stoppage-time red card for Matt Doherty after the Republic of Ireland right-back received a second booking.
Having ended their disappointing run of four league games without a win, Tottenham moved within four points of leaders Liverpool, who play Southampton on Monday.
The victory was especially welcome after Tottenham were forced to criticise Erik Lamela, Sergio Reguilon and Giovani lo Celso after the trio were pictured breaching coronavirus rules by attending a large Christmas party.
The Spurs stars’ behaviour came just days after Mourinho was critical of the Premier League for calling off their match against Fulham due to an outbreak of the virus among the Cottagers’ squad.
Lamela was not named in the squad on Saturday, while Reguilon was on the bench and Lo Celso was out injured.
Leeds made a vibrant start and Ezgjan Alioski shot into the side-netting after a flowing move prised open the Tottenham defence.
Moments later, Jack Harrison’s cutback was blocked by Matt Doherty and Mateusz Klich fired the loose ball over from close range.
– Son shines –
Patrick Bamford should have done better than head Raphinha’s cross over from six yards out.
But Tottenham finally steadied their nerves and took the lead in the 29th minute.
Steven Bergwijn got behind Alioski and went to ground after contact on the edge of the Leeds area.
VAR decided the offence had taken place just inside the box and Kane stepped up to dispatch the penalty for his 17th goal of the season.
Kane wasted a chance to double Tottenham’s advantage when he slashed wide from a good position.
Bergwijn fared no better after Ben Davies picked him out with just Leeds keeper Illan Meslier to beat.
Leeds nearly equalised when Harrison’s curler from the edge of the area flashed over.
Yet Son ensured his team-mates’ misses wouldn’t be costly as he increased the lead with his 15th goal of the season in the 43rd minute.
Once again, it was Kane who linked up with his attacking partner to deadly effect as his perfectly-weighted cross picked out Son, who guided a clinical finish past Meslier from 10 yards.
It was the 13th time Kane and Son had combined for a goal this term, equalling the Premier League record set by Alan Shearer and Chris Sutton for Blackburn in 1994-95.
Tottenham put the result beyond doubt in the 50th minute.
Meslier has been the guilty party on several occasions when Leeds have conceded this season.
The French keeper was caught out again when Alderweireld headed Son’s corner through his weak attempted save as the ball trickled just over the line.
With just seconds left, Doherty was dismissed after catching Pablo Hernandez with a late tackle.