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Monday, 26 August 2013 00:00

Tottenham 1 Swansea 0: Roberto Soldado penalty helps Spurs see off Michael Laudrup's side

Star man Gareth Bale may be on his way but Tottenham keep winning
by Amar Azam at White Hart Lane

Football: With Gareth Bale on his way out and Tottenham Hotspur manager Andre Villas-Boas and chairman Daniel Levy continuing to strengthen their squad with the cash that will be generated by the transfer fee, this season holds much promise for Spurs supporters.

A return to the Champions League will no doubt be a minimum requirement as a return on the club’s investment at the beginning of this season and after this hard-fought victory over Michael Laudrup’s Swansea City, courtesy of a second-half penalty kick from new record signing Roberto Soldado, they have every reason to expect better things to come.

Spurs’ players flattered to deceive against Crystal Palace in their season opener and in truth were little better against the Welsh side.

But they have lost just twice in the league since last December.

Villas-Boas is clearly putting together a side that is difficult to beat.

In a low-key first half Spurs dominated.

They were denied a penalty moments before the interval when midfielder Jonjo Shelvey hauled down the impressive Andros Townsend.

It was a poor decision by the officials.

But on 56 minutes referee Neil Swarbrick did point to the spot when the same two players tussled again. Soldado stepped up to coolly slot away the penalty past Michel Vorm.

There is much to admire about Laudrup’s men.

However, they clearly lacked creativity and were no match for the physical prowess shown by their opponents.

They also offered little after conceding the lead to show that were able to take something from the match.

In the end the win came relatively easily.

Spurs face Dinamo Tiblisi in the second leg of their Europa League qualifier, a tie that they are comfortably ahead in, before their first serious test this season — the north London derby showdown against rivals Arsenal on
Sunday.

Last season’s League Cup winners Swansea are also in European action this week.

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