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West Ham 2-3 Tottenham Hotspur

Paul Donovan reports from the London Stadium

Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino heaped praise on two-goal striker Harry Kane on Saturday, declaring him to be “one of the best strikers in the world.”

“I find it hard to find the words to describe him. I am in love, like the fans are in love, like his teammates are in love,” said Pochettino. “He is so humble, he keeps all the values that managers like me appreciate a lot.”

Even West Ham manager Slaven Bilic briefly joined the Kane love-in, admitting that his three centre backs Jose Fonte, Angelo Ogbonna and Winston Reid “had really good games and still Kane got two goals. That’s how good he is.”

The West Ham manager though was disappointed at the result. Up until Spurs scored in the 34th minute, he felt his team “took a lot of balls from them” and “had good situations.”

Then after the first goal West Ham lost shape. Bilic praised the fighting spirit of his team, suggesting if they had a bit more time they might have turned the result totally around.

West Ham did well in the early exchanges, with Marko Arnautovic proving a thorn in Tottenham’s defence, almost getting through at one point only to be thwarted by a last-ditch tackle from Serge Aurier.

It was Kane though who broke the deadlock after half an hour, heading home a cross from Dele Alli after Christian Eriksen had set him free down the right.

Four minutes later the same combination saw Eriksen’s flick release Alli, whose low shot was blocked by Joe Hart, with Kane on hand to ram the lose ball into an empty net.

After the break, Eriksen scored from the edge of the area, shortly after Kane’s shot had rebounded off the post.

The home side though fought back with Jose Font nodding a corner onto Chicarito, who headed home.

Aurier was then sent off for a second bookable offence, having hauled down Andy Carroll. Reduced to 10 men, Spurs were then forced to hang on, with Hugo Lloris saving at point-blank range from Chicarito.

The game reached boiling point in the 86th minute when substitute Arthur Masuaku’s excellent cross from the left was headed in by an onrushing Cheikhou Kouyate. But it turned out to be too little too late.

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