Spurs ride on Eriksen's late goal

SHOCKER: Southampton's Shane Long celebrates after scoring their first goal in 7.69 seconds against Watford. REUTERS

Christian Eriksen's 88th-minute goal finally broke Brighton and Hove Albion's brave resistance to give Tottenham Hotspur a precious 1-0 victory in their quest for a top-four finish in the Premier League.

It had been a night of grinding frustration for the hosts as they laid siege to relegation-threatened Brighton's goal but were denied by a combination of last-ditch defending, poor finishing and the woodwork.

Then, as the home fans began to despair that their side were about to throw away a chance to apply real pressure to the sides immediately below them, Danish playmaker Eriksen drilled a shot low past Mat Ryan and inside the post.

The win maintained third-placed Tottenham's 100 per cent record at their new stadium and took them to 70 points with three games to go, three more than Chelsea and four ahead of north London rivals Arsenal in fifth.

After a superb rearguard action, Brighton were left flattened and are still in real danger of the drop, just three points above third-from-bottom Cardiff City.

"I had a few warm-up shots before the goal. I hit it well and saw it fly in," Eriksen told Sky Sports.

"It is a very, very good feeling, a tough game, a lot of chances, they sat deep, it is difficult to play against 10 or 11 in the box." 

Southampton striker Shane Long scored the fastest goal in Premier League history on Tuesday after netting just 7.69 seconds into his side's 1-1 draw at Watford, who snatched a point thanks to Andre Gray's late equaliser.

Long's record-breaking goal came immediately after the kick-off when he blocked a clearance from Watford defender Craig Cathcart, allowing the Republic of Ireland international to dink a cool finish over Ben Foster.

The 32-year-old's effort surpassed the previous fastest Premier League goal, scored by Tottenham defender Ledley King in 9.9 seconds against Bradford in December 2000.

"It's a record, is it?" Long told Sky Sports News with a grin after the game.

"Straight from the kick-off we wanted to put them under pressure and 99 times out of a hundred you block it and it doesn't work but this time it did."

Long's historic goal, just his fourth this season, didn't prove to be the winner at Vicarage Road after Gray's 90th-minute equaliser for the FA Cup finalists but nonetheless moved them six points from the relegation zone with three matches remaining.

"It's nice to have a record like that, but it would have been nicer if it was the winning goal," Long added.

King was watching Tottenham's game against Brighton on Tuesday when he discovered that his 19-year record had been broken.

After King's goal, the next fastest strike in Premier League history was scored by Alan Shearer after 10.52 seconds for Newcastle against Manchester City in 2003.

Eriksen scored after 10.54 seconds for Tottenham against Manchester United last season.

 

 

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