Posted September 14, 2013 on AP on Fox
PLAYERS: Gareth Bale
Gylfi Sigurdsson's double on Saturday gave Tottenham a 2-0 victory over Norwich and a third win in four Premier League games for the overhauled team. New signing Christian Eriksen played a part in creating Sigurdsson's goals during a skillful debut after joining from Ajax. Eriksen was one of seven players signed in recent months as Tottenham reinvested the $130 million-plus fee received from Real Madrid, which completed the world-record signing of Gareth Bale two weeks ago. Tottenham's opening pair of victories - before losing at Arsenal - had been achieved from the penalty spot. But Sigurdsson scored Tottenham's first goal from open play this season in the 28th minute. Danny Rose picked up the ball from Mousa Dembele and squared to Eriksen, who fed for Sigurdsson to slot home from 15 yards (meters). Sigurdsson's second came four minutes into the second half. Eriksen picked the ball up in the center and fed Paulinho, who fired a low ball through goalkeeper John Ruddy's hands to the back post where the unmarked Sigurdsson tapped in. Tottenham was playing with the same attacking fluency and verve it had with Bale in the side last season. Andros Townsend also showed qualities down the right flank reminiscent of Bale, cutting in to test Ruddy, while there was also an industrious display from Danny Rose at left-back. Eriksen, though, stole the show to highlight the value of a transfer that could cost Tottenham up to 13.5 million euros ($18 million). Early on, the Dane picked the ball up off Rose and twisted and turned past two Norwich defenders before firing in a low shot, which Ruddy spilled. Another new recruit, Roberto Soldado, backheeled the loose ball toward goal, but the woodwork denied the Spain striker a goal to add to his two penalties so far for Tottenham. Eriksen's corner then fell into the path of Dembele, who turned Bradley Johnson inside out to find Soldado. But the striker was denied again, this time by the out-stretched leg of former Tottenham defender Sebastien Bassong. ?A few minutes later Spurs were ahead with their first goal from open play in 297 minutes in the league. Steven Whittaker and Javier Garrido had no answer to the pace of Rose and Townsend as Tottenham piled on the pressure down the flanks. Rose whipped in a dangerous cross that Norwich just cleared before Soldado could head into the net. Townsend, Eriksen and Rose all wasted chances just before the break. Villas-Boas became angry at his team's failure to add a second, and they almost paid for their profligacy when Jan Vertonghen lost his footing in his own box while tracking Ricky Van Wolfswinkel. Luckily for Spurs, Rose put a foot in to deny the Netherlands striker. And then Sigurdsson found the target again. Sigurdsson stung Ruddy's palms with a long-range drive and Townsend and Rose also went close to making it 3-0. Van Wolfswinkel was presented with a great chance to pull one back when he seized upon a loose ball in the box but Rose's tackle averted the danger.
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