Southampton v Tottenham - Story of the match
Dele Alli's double spared Harry Kane's blushes as the midfielder helped Tottenham to an emphatic 4-1 win against 10-man Southampton.
Kane scored one but missed a penalty at St Mary's as two goals from Alli and another from substitute Son Heung-min sealed an impressive victory for Spurs.
Virgil van Dijk had earlier put Saints ahead within 73 seconds but Tottenham came back to lead after two headers from Kane and Alli.
Nathan Redmond was then sent off just before the hour by referee Mike Dean for denying Alli a goalscoring opportunity only for Kane to blaze the spot-kick over the bar.
The miss proved inconsequential, however, as substitute Son and then Alli sealed the win, which sends Tottenham back to within a point of Arsenal in fourth.
TWEET OF THE MATCH
"Blame the pitch #kane #SOUTOT it's not the pitch it's you," Olympic bronze medallist - and Arsenal fan - Kelly Sotherton (@KellySotherton) had no sympathy after Kane's woeful penalty miss.
Dele Alli. The midfielder has endured an inconsistent season so far but was back to his blistering best here. Alli scored twice and won Tottenham's penalty after being fouled by Redmond when he might have scored another. Southampton simply never got to grips with the 20-year-old.
Harry Kane hit the net for the first time in four matches but the usually reliable penalty-taker skied his spot-kick in the second half. Kane looked down at the turf after his miss as if the ground had distorted his strike. He now has 10 goals this season and Mauricio Pochettino will hope his goal sparks another strong run of form.
REFEREE IN THE SPOTLIGHT
Tottenham led 2-1 when Dean awarded the penalty against Redmond but his decision certainly hurt Southampton's chances of a comeback. The home side felt aggrieved given the incident at least began outside the box and Redmond then suffered the double punishment of a red card. It was a decisive moment in the contest.
Fraser Forster 5
Jose Fonte 6
Virgil van Dijk 7
Ryan Bertrand 5
Steven Davis 5
Oriol Romeu 6
Sofiane Boufal 7
James Ward-Prowse 7
Nathan Redmond 4
Jay Rodriguez 6
Shane Long (for Rodriguez, 72 mins) 6
Dusan Tadic (for Boufal, 72 mins) 6
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (for Davis, 72 mins) 4
Hugo Lloris 6 (out of 10)
Kyle Walker 7
Eric Dier 6
Jan Vertonghen 7
Mousa Dembele 7
Victor Wanyama 6
Moussa Sissoko 7
Dele Alli 6
Harry Kane 8
Harry Winks (for Dembele, 82 mins) 6
Heung-min Son (for Sissoko, 74 mins) 7
Vincent Janssen (for Kane, 89 mins) 5
WHO'S UP NEXT?
Southampton v West Brom (Premier League, December 31)
Watford v Tottenham (Premier League, January 1)