West Ham take wind out of Tottenham's sails ahead of Champions League visit of Ajax

Michail Antonio becomes first visiting player to score at Spurs' new home

epaselect epa07531918 West Ham's Michail Antonio (R) celebrates after scoring the 1-0 lead during the English Premier League soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London, Britain, 27 April 2019.  EPA/ANDY RAIN EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications.

Tottenham Hotspur were dealt a huge blow just days before one of the biggest games in the club's history, as West Ham United became the first visiting team to leave Spurs' new home with three points.

Results at Wembley aside, this was Tottenham's first defeat at their actual home ground in 28 games stretching back to 2015. Crystal Palace, Manchester City, Huddersfield Town and Brighton & Hove Albion have all been dispatched since Spurs moved back to N17 from Wembley. West Ham refused to be scalp No 5 as Michail Antonio blasted home a second-half winner.

The defeat could derail Spurs' end-of-season hopes on two fronts. Victory would have locked up a second successive third-place finish in the Premier League, if other results had gone Spurs' way. While they will remain in control of their own destiny with two games left to play, Mauricio Pochettino and his staff will have to work hard to restore confidence ahead of the visit of Ajax on Tuesday in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final tie.

Spurs have looked like a team running out of steam in their last two games. Fatigue was always going to be a factor in a squad that has has had no new signings since Lucas Moura arrived in January 2018 and without the considerable talents of the injured Harry Kane and the rested Jan Vertonghen.

"We arrived for this game in a different condition and that was an important factor in the second half. It was really tough today," Pochettino said. On Spurs' top-four chances, he said: "It is a fight, it is a race, with two games to play. We knew that before."

It has been 100 games since Spurs last played out a 0-0 draw but it looked the most likely outcome after a first half where chances were few and far between.

Christian Eriksen, whose 88th-minute goal saw off Brighton on Tuesday, resumed his more familiar role as creator-in-chief, setting up chances for Son Heung-min and Dele Alli. Lukasz Fabianski kept out the South Korean's left-foot effort while Alli was guilty of dallying on the ball when Son was better placed in the area.

Felipe Anderson wasted a glorious chance to put the visitors ahead on 18 minutes. A neat one-two with Robert Snodgrass released Anderson to test his nerve against Hugo Lloris but the Brazilian's tame shot was easily gathered by the Spurs captain.

West Ham started the second half the brighter of the two teams with Marko Arnautovic, a virtual spectator in the opening 45 minutes, finally finding space and testing Lloris with a long-range effort.

It was the Austrian forward's delicate chip into Antonio's path that allowed the West Ham winger to control with his chest and blast home the first goal by a visiting player at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on 67 minutes.

Antonio could have doubled his tally 10 minutes from time as he raced on to a long diagonal ball but Lloris saved well low to his left. Issa Diop then found himself in unfamiliar territory as the giant Frenchman strode forward from the back unopposed but Lloris was again up to the task.

With the clock ticking down, Spurs charged forward for one final assault. Juan Foyth picked out the unmarked Vincent Janssen, on as a late substitute, at the back post but Fabian Balbuena cleared the Dutchman's header off the line.

Victory kept the Hammers in the hunt for a top-10 finish. "Today, we were a complete team, defending together without the ball, and we were playing to win," said West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini.

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