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Brighton 0-1 Tottenham: Kane Goal Sinks Seagulls In First De Zerbi Defeat

Harry Kane’s first half header was enough to secure all three points for Tottenham in a first defeat for Brighton manager Roberto De Zerbi.

Despite the buzz amongst the Amex faithful ahead of Roberto De Zerbi’s first home game as Brighton manager, it was the visitors who started the strongest in the opening fifteen minutes. Heung-min Son would provide Tottenham with their first real effort of the encounter via a set piece; however his effort was palmed away by Brighton goalkeeper Robert Sánchez. Minutes later, Sánchez would be called into action again, making a full stretch save to deny a sizzling strike from Tottenham’s Rodrigo Bentancur.

Despite Brighton’s defensive duties in the opening stages, it would not be long before Tottenham were rewarded for their efforts. Brighton’s attempt to clear a Heung-min Son corner would result in the Korean International picking the ball up again out wide, with Harry Kane heading home the resulting cross from close range. The England International now has eight goals in eight games this season, earning him a spot in 2nd in the race for the Golden Boot.

Moments later, the Seagulls were provided with a strong opportunity to equalise from a set piece of their own, however Pascal Gross’s corner would be headed over by Brighton captain Lewis Dunk. As a result, Brighton would continue to grow in confidence, with a flurry of chances beginning to fall their way before the stroke of half time. In the latter stages of the first half, a smart passage of play by the Seagulls would find the feet of Solly March, however the Sussex born wing- back would strike just wide of the post.

In the second half, Tottenham would be provided with a golden opportunity to extend their lead, with a defensive mishap from the hosts almost proving costly. A poor attempt at a forward pass from Brighton’s Adam Webster allowed Tottenham to attack towards the Brighton goal, however the end product from England International Harry Kane proved to be no problem for Brighton’s Robert Sánchez.

Down the other end, the visitors would suffer a close call of their own, once again as a result of a defensive mishap. Richarlison’s decision to play a backward pass close to the Tottenham penalty area allowed former Arsenal forward Danny Welbeck to progress into the box, however his effort would find itself way wide of the Tottenham goal.

Despite the flurry of chances from the hosts, Tottenham would hold on for all three points, a result made all the more significant by the recent passing of Tottenham’s fitness coach Gian Piero Ventrone. Speaking on Ventrone and the significance of the result, Tottenham boss Antonio Conte said that "It was a really tough week for us, not only for me - my staff and players and all the Tottenham environment."

"He [Ventrone] was a person who was in the heart of every single Tottenham person. It was really tough for us. It is very difficult for me to speak about the situation because it is difficult to understand what happened.

"At the end, to win a game today against a really strong team like Brighton, it shows that I can count not only good players but also good men."

Tottenham’s victory provided Brighton with their first home defeat of the season, much to the frustration of Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi. Speaking after the encounter, the Italian said that “I must admit the result is not fair, after the first 15 minutes there was only one team on the pitch and that team was Brighton.

"I don't believe in lucky or unlucky. The players were fantastic today but when one team played like that today it is a good message for the league for the future.

"In the first half after 15-20 minutes, we played a good 25 minutes. In the second half it was the same. I think for 70 minutes it was a good level of football."

Saturday’s result allows Tottenham to climb to third in the league table, whilst Brighton slip to sixth following their second defeat of the season. Up next for Saturday’s hosts is a trip to West London, with the Seagulls set to face Brentford on Friday evening. As for Tottenham, Eintracht Frankfurt await them in a home encounter on Wednesday night.

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