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Tottenham held to draw at Bournemouth

Dele Alli

Tottenham missed the chance to move top of the Premier League - at least for a few hours - as they were held to a goalless draw at Bournemouth.

Bournemouth nearly took a shock early lead when Charlie Daniels' close-range effort following a corner was brilliantly saved by Hugo Lloris, the Spurs keeper reacting to deflect the ball onto the bar with his legs.

Spurs' Erik Lamela then hit the crossbar at the other end, but while the visitors raised their game after the break, the Cherries held firm, with keeper Artur Boruc keeping out Dele Alli and Danny Rose, while Bournemouth substitute Benik Afobe headed just over at the death.

Meanwhile, referee Craig Pawson upset the home fans who felt Lamela should have been shown a second yellow card, while substitute Moussa Sissoko was not punished for an apparent elbow into Harry Arter's face.

Pawson then waved away late Bournemouth appeals for a penalty when Jack Wilshere went down after a challenge by Jan Vertonghen.

Press for success - but give no quarter

Both managers had praised their opponent's style of play in the build-up and it was no surprise when the game began at a high tempo with both sides attacking freely.

But Bournemouth showed more steel than the side who lost 5-1 to a Harry Kane-inspired Spurs this time last year, with Arter particularly relishing the physical battle, epitomised by a perfectly timed tackle - hard but fair - on Victor Wanyama.

While Tottenham shaded possession, the frenzied nature of the game and the visitors' determination to stop Bournemouth counter-attacking at pace saw Lamela, Vertonghen, Alli and Rose all enter Pawson's notebook before half-time for fouls.

Lamela was perhaps fortunate not to receive a second caution before the break for a challenge no better than those that had earned earlier bookings - minutes after he had struck the bar with a curling shot.

Meanwhile, television replays did not show Spurs' Sissoko in a good light as he clashed with an incensed Arter on the touchline and appeared to throw an elbow.

An England audition?

With interim England boss Gareth Southgate in the stands, it was Alli and Wilshere - potential rivals for the central attacking midfield role - who were at the heart of the most threatening moves.

Alli tested Boruc from long range early in the second half, with the ole diving right to palm the ball away - but the 20-year-old only lasted 71 minutes before being withdrawn.

Wilshere, closely shadowed by the towering Wanyama while having every touch booed by the away fans for his Arsenal connections, found space to cross for Callum Wilson who headed wide.

The 24-year-old completed 90 minutes in the Premier League for the first time since 13 September 2014.

Meanwhile, Rose - one of four English full-backs whose buccaneering play must have impressed Southgate - was first wasteful after being set up by Christian Eriksen, skewing his shot across goal, and then foiled by Boruc after trying a low shot with 15 minutes left.

More to follow.

Line-ups

Bournemouth

  • 1Boruc
  • 15Smith
  • 2Francis
  • 3Cook
  • 11Daniels
  • 4GoslingBooked at 39mins
  • 8Arter
  • 17King