Harry Kane gives Spurs a winning end to their season and fifth spot on the table
Published 24/05/2015 | 17:07
Harry Kane rounded off his memorable breakthrough campaign with his 31st Tottenham goal of the season as Mauricio Pochettino's men sealed fifth spot and a place in next term's Europa League.
The 21-year-old's journey from squad player to talisman at White Hart Lane has been one of the stories of the season and he provided one final reminder of his quality during a largely mundane encounter at Goodison Park.
The PFA Young Player of the Year headed Eric Dier's 24th-minute cross beyond Tim Howard in a 1-0 victory which lifted Spurs up to fifth, above Everton's local rivals Liverpool.
While the red half of Merseyside was undoubtedly experiencing a more grim final afternoon at Stoke, there was little cheer for the Blues either.
They missed out on the top 10 just one year on from their fifth-placed finish in Roberto Martinez's maiden campaign.
This was the 57th game Spurs had played this season, with Everton taking to the pitch for the 51st time - but it was the visitors who looked less fatigued in the opening exchanges.
Their attacking players darted between the lines with ease and after Erik Lamela had fired over, Ryan Mason collected a one-two from Christian Eriksen before running into Phil Jagielka, with referee Jon Moss uninterested in his half-hearted penalty appeals.
Lamela was the next to burst into the box after Eriksen fed him following an error from home debutant Brendan Galloway, yet Howard's right hand prevented the Argentinian from finding the far corner.
Moments later Kevin Mirallas broke behind Tottenham's back line only to drill his opportunity straight into Hugo Lloris' body. The Belgian forward did better with a self-created chance when he blasted narrowly over after teeing himself up with a couple of touches on the edge of the area.
However, Spurs would claim a deserved lead thanks to yet another goal from their number 18. Dier's first-time cross from the right flank was inviting and Kane stooped to guide his header beyond Howard and into the far corner for his first goal in five matches.
Everton stirred from their end-of-season slumber somewhat to test Lloris at the end of the first period as a Mirallas effort landed on the roof of the net and Seamus Coleman's cross was pushed away by the Frenchman.
And the Toffees started strongly after the break as half-time substitute Muhamed Besic steered a long-range try wide, Leon Osman volleyed off target and Galloway almost broke beyond Lloris.
That period was short-lived, though, as Spurs settled back into their pattern of dominating possession while their lacklustre hosts ambled around the pitch.
Kane's blushes were then spared by the offside flag as he headed a simple chance wide, after Eriksen clipped the ball into him at the end of a sustained spell of Spurs possession.
The rise to prominence of Kane, who also netted on his senior England debut in March, has made him a household name but there were chuckles when it was announced Harry 'Keane' was being substituted in the closing stages.
There was no mispronunciation of Sylvain Distin's name as the centre-back appeared for a farewell cameo moments earlier, but his arrival, and the Liverpool result, produced the only cheers of the afternoon from the home faithful.