Tottenham hold off West Ham to reach last four
Tottenham moved into the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup as they edged West Ham in a thrilling quarter-final tie.
The hosts went ahead when Steven Bergwijn linked up with Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and fired home his first goal of the season after 29 minutes.
But Tottenham’s lead only lasted three minutes before Eric Dier’s poor clearance led to Nikola Vlasic having a shot and the ball falling to Jarrod Bowen, who finished neatly after producing a superb turn to create space.
However, Spurs retook the lead – and ultimately grabbed the winner – just two minutes later with Lucas Moura netting from Bergwijn’s pull-back.
West Ham so nearly forced penalties, but substitute Andriy Yarmolenko’s looping effort hit the crossbar in the third minute of injury time.
Tottenham keep alive hopes of ending trophy drought
Tottenham are aiming to win their first trophy since lifting the League Cup in the 2007-08 campaign – and Antonio Conte’s side had to battle hard to overcome a West Ham team, two places above them in fifth spot in the Premier League table.
Spurs had three games postponed earlier this month because of Covid-19, including their final Europa League Conference League game, which saw Rennes awarded an automatic 3-0 victory. It was a result that denied Tottenham a chance to advance into the next phase.
But, since returning to action, they have drawn 2-2 with Liverpool and now beaten the Hammers. Both named strong sides, although the visitors were without top goalscorer Michail Antonio because of a positive coronavirus test result.
Harry Kane nearly opened the scoring, but had an angled effort parried by away goalkeeper Alphonse Areola before a frantic spell of three goals in five minutes.
Bergwijn put the hosts ahead, but West Ham’s response was instant with Tomas Soucek twice having headers saved by Hugo Lloris and Craig Dawson also heading over before Bowen’s equaliser.
But Hammers boss David Moyes would have been furious the scores were only level for two minutes before Dutchman Bergwijn added an assist to his earlier goal, linking up well with Moura and the Brazilian’s calm finish put the hosts back in front.
West Ham had beaten Manchester United and last season’s Carabao Cup winners Manchester City in previous rounds and pushed for an equaliser that would have taken the game to a penalty shootout.
Substitute Said Benrahma shot over on the turn from inside the penalty area, had another effort saved by Lloris and, after a fine piece to skill to flick up the ball, volleyed wide. Yarmolenko caused another late scare for Tottenham, but they held on for the victory.
Spurs reached the final of this competition last season, losing 1-0 to Manchester City at Wembley, and are now only two rounds away from the chance of claiming long-awaited silverware.