Blues 0 Tottenham 2

Last updated : 21 March 2006 By Brian Cartlidge

Aaron Lennon and Robbie Keane put another nail in Blues' survival hopes to the huge disappointment of the home fans who streamed out of the ground after Spurs' second goal on 77minutes.

Blues rarely looked capable of staging an end-of-season revival and their prospects of avoiding relegation are growing grimmer with every game.

Poor defensive work again let them down badly as Lennon took full advantage to give Spurs a vital win that takes them two points clear of their close rivals, Arsenal.

Early in the game it became increasingly apparent that Blues were desperate to gain the upper-hand as quickly as possible. They launched the ball into the middle of the Spurs defence on a regular basis but to no avail and the final outcome was always on the cards.

Bargain-buy Dudley Campbell, making his first start for Blues, was a live-wire but often as not there was some uncertainty about his play when on the ball.

Jermaine Pennant produced a lot of magic on the right as he gave Young-Pye Lee a run-around in the early part of the game. Blues failure to engineer a goal, however, created some anxious times as Spurs were seemingly quite happy to absorb the pressure.

The likes of Keane and Jermain Defoe could make little impact in this period and the only real effort on goal was a low free-kick from the talented Michael Carrick.

Emile Heskey was more mobile than of late but slipped going through when tackled by Ledley King, while the former England striker completely missed his kick just yards away from Spurs' goal.

The longer the game went on the more Blues became frustrated by their inability to get on the score-sheet.

On the credit side was the return from a lengthy absence of skipper Kenny Cunningham. He definitely gave Blues defence more assurance in what was a difficult situation but he could not prevent the two goals.

Likewise King was a power of strength in Spurs' defence along with the commanding Michael Dawson. As a result Blues were easily contained.

Spurs' ability to infiltrate Blues' defence early in the second half was ominous and Defoe induced some panic with a shot which Maik Taylor had to flick over the bar.

From Carrick's corner Dawson fired in a shot which clearly hit Nicky Butt on the arm but referee Uriah Rennie dismissed any claims for a penalty.

Blues' attempt to dominate Spurs fizzled out as there was little stimulation. They even lost the services of Heskey as he limped out of the game to be replaced by Mikael Forssell.

Tottenham displayed more enterprise and this was rewarded in the 65th minute when Lennon took full advantage of Blues' desperate defending to put the Londoners ahead.

Defoe made a run down the left channel, Melchiot dallied and failed to clear and the England striker's cross into a crowded goalmouth was missed by all the Blues defenders and Lennon applied the finishing touch with a low left-footed shot into the corner of the net.

Tottenham's controlling play gave them a second goal in the 77th minute when Keane had a simple tap-in from a low pin-point cross by Jenas.