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Swansea 0-2 Tottenham: Fernando Llorente scores against former club

RIATH AL-SAMARRAI AT THE LIBERTY STADIUM: Tottenham made hard work of beating the Premier League's bottom side before leaving the Liberty Stadium with a priceless three points.


It doesn't just rain in Swansea, it pours. Forget for one minute the drenching symbolism of Storm Eleanor over this troubled club, here they were beaten by two of their own and a refereeing contingent that was away with the clouds.

Nothing to do with Harry Kane and his many hat-tricks. Nope. He spent 67 minutes on the bench, a heavy cold taking away his chance of a third treble in three games.

Instead, this was about Fernando Llorente, the striker who kept Swansea in the Premier League last season with his 15 goals. How predictable that he would score on his first league start for Spurs, heading his old mates one step closer to the drop after 11 minutes. 

Fernando Llorente scored his first Premier League goal for Tottenham who beat his former club Swansea on Tuesday night

Tall target man Llorente opened the scoring on 12 minutes when he headed past Swansea goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski

Llorente was making his first League start since joining Swansea because regular frontman Kane had been battling illness

Kane came off the bench to deliver a fine long-range pass to Dele Alli, who scored Tottenham's second goal on 89 minutes

MATCH FACTS, PLAYER RATINGS AND LEAGUE TABLE

Swansea (5-3-2): Fabianski 7; Rangel 5.5 (Narsingh 53, 6), Van der Hoorn 6, Fernandez 5.5, Mawson 6.5, Olsson 6; Sanches 6.5, Carroll 6.5, Clucas 6; Dyer 6 (McBurnie 71, 6), Ayew 6 (Routledge 79).

Subs: Fer, Nordfeldt, Bartley, Roque

Booked: Olsson, Van der Hoorn 

Tottenham: Lloris 7; Trippier 6, Sanchez 5.5 (Wanyama 59, 6), Vertonghen 6, Davies 7; Eriksen 7.5, Dier 7, Alli 6.5; Lamela 6 (Sissoko 76), Llorente 7 (Kane 67, 6), Son 6

Subs: Vorm, Aurier, Winks, Walker-Peters

Goals: Llorente (12), Alli (89) 

Booked: Sanchez, Lamela

Referee: Robert Madley 4

Star man: Christian Eriksen

Att: 20,615

Alli scored the second goal after a fine long-range pass from Kane and a Fabianski parry 

Lamela made his second PL start this season and spent most of the game between the halfway line and the edge of the Swans box

For more for stats and maps check out Sportsmail's brilliant Match Zone.

Then there was Ben Davies, the academy lad from these parts. It was his diving tackle on Jordan Ayew midway through the second half that stopped a certain equaliser.

That combination would have been painful enough in isolation; the further contribution of the referee, Robert Madley, was just plain infuriating, given the error in allowing Llorente's goal from an offside position, and then his odd decision to spare Davinson Sanchez a second yellow card in the second half.

In a season where Swansea have done so much to shoot themselves in the foot – as well as hand, knee and backside – this was a defeat that felt rather harsh, given how little luck they had before Dele Alli wrapped up the game at the death.

But that's their problem. As for Spurs, on they go, rising to fifth after five wins in six. They have four points to make up to Liverpool in fourth, but they are moving at pace and next face West Ham on Thursday, although they are likely to be without Danny Rose. 

Carlos Carvalhal appeared to be in a good mood as he applauded the Swansea fans ahead of his first home game as manager

Martin Olsson was shown a yellow card inside the opening 11 minutes by referee Bobby Madley for a foul on Kieran Trippier

Spurs took the lead moments later when a Christian Eriksen free kick was headed home at the near post by Spaniard Llorente

Llorente was pounced upon by team-mates Son Heung-min and Dele Alli (right) but he refused to show any joy after scoring

Many more players joined Son and Alli in congratulating Llorente on scoring his second Tottenham goal in all competitions

Although former Spain international Llorente was deliberately subdued with his celebration, he did salute the Spurs fans

Television replays showed that Llorente had been in an offside position when Eriksen delivered his free kick from the left flank

The injury he suffered against Southampton was to the same knee as the one that kept him out for 10 months, but after missing this game, Mauricio Pochettino allayed any serious fears by saying he was 'not concerned' by the latest issue.

On the matter of a rather fortunate win, he added: 'The conditions were so, so difficult to play so I am happy.

'You could see it (Llorente's goal) was offside, maybe. Always in football you need some luck, but in the end, I think we deserved the victory anyway.'

That is a little debatable, despite Tottenham dominating the first half an hour to an almost absurd degree. Swansea had sat back and invited Spurs to attack, but after emerging only one goal down, they were markedly improved in the final hour. 

Llorente was not the only ex-Swansea player in the Spurs team. Welsh left back Ben Davies (left) also faced his former side

Meanwhile, ex-Spurs youth Tom Carroll (right) lined up for Swansea against the team who gave him his Premier League debut

Erik Lamela, starting his second Premier League match since October 2016, found plenty of space and showed neat touches

Tottenham's Davinson Sanchez was the second man to enter ref Madley's notebook when he was cautioned for fouling Olsson

Heavy rain in South Wales created difficult playing conditions at the Liberty Stadium, especially during the first 45 minutes

Excessive water on the ground caused the ball to roll slowly, but the players slid faster than usual, as discovered by Llorente

Having beaten Watford in Carlos Carvalhal's first game, they might well have got something here, with Renato Sanches again improving and Luciano Narsingh, Jordan Ayew and Van der Hoorn having good chances. 

Ultimately, too much went against them, including Madley, whose assistant Marc Perry apologised to Carvalhal for Llorente's goal. Further contrition might be felt over the call to let Sanchez stay on after taking down Martin Olsson, with Pochettino immediately following the reprieve by substituting his defender.

Carvalhal said: 'I have only just arrived in the Premier League so I do not talk about referees. Just two points - the linesman apologised at the end and second point, Pochettino is a clever manager because he took off Sanchez at that moment.'

Perhaps a slightly lucky manager as well. 

Twenty-five-year-old Swansea midfielder Carroll and Spurs right back Tripper, 27, also went for a slide on the slippy surface

After being lucky to escape a second yellow card for another foul on Olsson, Sanchez was taken off before the hour mark

Spurs made their second sub soon after, bringing on Kane, whose preparations for the match involved taking antibiotics

Kane, not fully fit, only fired in one shot during his 25-minute cameo but he came up with a superb pass that led to Alli scoring

Alli's initial shot was saved by Swans stopper Fabianksi but the rebound fell kindly for him to strike the ball high into the net

Goalscorer Alli and England team-mate Kane celebrated the late strike with a high five

Before scoring their second, Tottenham endured some nervy moments, including one which saw the ball strike their post

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