Tottenham pulled out of their recent slump to book an FA Cup fourth-round place with a 2-1 replay victory over Middlesbrough.

Jonathan Woodgate, the former Spurs defender, saw his team take the lead and battle to a 1-1 draw at the Riverside Stadium 10 days ago but they were the architects of their own downfall in north London.

Giovani Lo Celso and Erik Lamela were the respective first-half beneficiaries of poor errors from Boro goalkeeper Tomas Mejias and captain Jonny Howson.

Jose Mourinho's men travel to Southampton in the round of 32, having lost the Premier League version of that fixture 1-0 on New Year's Day, despite Boro substitute George Saville setting up a grandstand finish.

Middlesbrough's hopes of an upset were severely compromised within two minutes when Mejias' loose pass was intercepted by Lo Celso, who capitalised with a composed finish into the bottom-left corner.

Davinson Sanchez overhit his own pass from the back and then lost his footing, allowing Lukas Nmecha to turn inside Japhet Tanganga and draw a fine save from Spurs goalkeeper Paulo Gazzaniga.

Boro were quickly made to regret not capitalising on that opening when Howson lost possession and Lamela eased beyond Paddy McNair and Dael Fry to double the Tottenham lead.

Lamela fizzed over on the turn midway through the first half before Spurs full-backs Ryan Sessegnon and Tanganga went close.

Middlesbrough attacks were becoming increasingly rare, although Ashley Fletcher – their goalscorer in the initial game – could have pulled one back when he headed Marvin Johnson's 44th-minute free-kick wide.

Sessegnon blazed an inviting Tanganga cross over from close range in the 51st minute but Spurs did little else to quicken the pulse for most of the second period.

Saville had a speculative effort deflected on to the roof of the net and Spurs did not heed the warning as he was allowed to advance and slot past Gazzaniga's apologetic dive to prompt a nervy finale.

 

What does it mean? Mourinho's men back to winning ways

Spurs were winless in four games since Boxing Day heading into Tuesday's match, with a serious hamstring injury to captain Harry Kane compounding their woes. It will take more than earning a fourth-round trip to St Mary's to restore the fleeting feelgood factor of Mourinho's first couple of weeks in charge, but this was a step in the right direction.

Lo Celso and Lamela sparkle

Injury has hindered Lo Celso's debut season at Spurs, much as fitness problems have frequently hindered his compatriot Lamela throughout his time in north London. The Argentina duo dazzled here and were responsible for most of Spurs' brightest moments. How Mourinho would love them to retain form and fitness.

Slack Sanchez gets away with it

Tottenham's aversion to clean sheets has been a notable feature of the Mourinho era. They have one in 14 matches now and Sanchez's frequent lackadaisical moments were enough to keep Boro interested.

What's next?

Spurs travel to in-form Watford in the Premier League on Saturday, while Middlesbrough are back in London to take on promotion-chasing Fulham in the Championship on Friday.

Tottenham head coach Jose Mourinho believes Jurgen Klopp's long-term commitment to Liverpool can only be positive news for the Premier League.

Klopp inked a new deal tying him to the Reds until 2024, adding two years to his existing contract.

The German masterminded Liverpool's victory over Tottenham in last season's Champions League final and has guided the Reds to an eight-point advantage atop the Premier League this term.

Mourinho praised Klopp's talents and said his presence in English football was good for the game.

"First of all, it means they are all happy," Mourinho told a news conference. "He's happy; if not, he doesn't sign. They're happy; if not, they don't give him new contract.

"Great news obviously for Liverpool fans, because they love him, for the players, because it looks clear that they like each other and their relationship is very good, and good news for the Premier League.

"We want to have the best players and the best coaches, and he's one of the best, so I think only positive news."

Mourinho was speaking ahead of Sunday's trip to sixth-placed Wolves.

Spurs will be without Erik Lamela, who has suffered a setback in his recovery from a hamstring injury and faces another two months on the sidelines.

Tanguy Ndombele will miss out because of a groin problem, but Harry Winks is back in training after overcoming an ankle issue.

Mourinho's men will be looking to bounce back from a 3-1 Champions League loss to Bayern Munich as they seek to stay in touch with the top four.

"We know where we belong," said the Portuguese, who has overseen three wins and a defeat in the Premier League since taking charge in north London.

"Of course, we don't belong to the second part of the table, where we were. We don't even belong to position seven or eight, where we are the moment.

"We know where we belong and we believe, at the end of the season, we are going to be there.

"But if you can accelerate the process and get results that put you sooner rather than later in these positions, obviously this is the best that can happen to us. We need a bit of time.

"We need to improve in many things, and we are going to improve, because we have the talent to improve, the desire to improve, so I'm sure we're going to improve."

Harry Kane and Son Heung-min scored doubles to ease the pressure on Mauricio Pochettino and kick-start Tottenham's Champions League campaign with a comprehensive 5-0 win over Red Star Belgrade.

Spurs have endured a difficult start to the season, with just one win in their previous seven games - including a 7-2 European defeat to Bayern Munich - leading to speculation that Pochettino's position could be under threat.

His side made light work of accommodating opponents on Tuesday, though, as goals from Kane and Son inside the opening 16 minutes gave them the platform for a first Champions League win of the season.

Son added a third in the 44th minute before Erik Lamela and Kane scored in the second half to help Spurs move up to second in Group B, five points behind Bayern.

Spurs started on the front foot and went ahead in the ninth minute, Kane losing his marker at the near post and glancing Erik Lamela's inswinging corner past Milan Borjan.

Lamela was the provider again after 16 minutes, cutting back inside down the right and picking out Son at the far post, where the South Korean steered a powerful half-volley high into Borjan's net.

Borjan then twice prevented Spurs from increasing their advantage midway through the first half, superbly pawing away efforts from Tanguy Ndombele and Lamela.

There was little he could do about Spurs' third shortly before half-time, however, as Son coolly slotted past the keeper from eight yards after being played in by Ndombele.

Lamela spurned two glorious chances at the start of the second period before finally finding the back of the net in the 57th minute. The 27-year-old collected Serge Aurier's pass inside the area, spun away from his marker and blazed past Borjan.

The Red Star goalkeeper denied a clean-through Lamela soon after, while Son clipped into his side-netting after a surging run.

Kane got the better of Borjan in the 72nd minute, though, slotting into his left-hand corner from 10 yards to seal a dominant win that suggests Pochettino's players are still fighting for him. 

 

What does it mean? Don't write Spurs off just yet

Speaking ahead of this game, Kane said it could just take one positive result to turn Spurs' stuttering season around – this might be it. Pochettino will certainly breathe a little easier after a ruthless display that suggested there is still plenty of life left in a side that has been written off by many.

Lamela in fine form

The Argentina international was central to Spurs' success, putting in two delicious crosses that were clinically dispatched by Kane and Son in the early stages and scoring a superb fourth in the second half. 

Lloris' understudy looking shaky

Hugo Lloris' replacement, Paulo Gazzaniga, did not have a great deal to do but when called into action he hardly inspired confidence. Spurs fans will be hoping the France World Cup winner returns to action sooner rather than later.

What's next?

Tottenham return to Premier League action on Sunday with a daunting trip to leaders Liverpool, while Red Star are in domestic action against Radnik Surdulica a day earlier.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.