A 86th minute strike from Shola Ameobi stopped Tottenham grabbing all 3 points in what was a fiercely contested battle.
Tottenham are still looking for their first win at St James’ Park since 2004 when Timothee Atouba scored the winner and Jacques Santini was managing the club. Remember those guys? Jermain Defoe looked like he had sealed the victory but with Tottenham not finishing the game off, Shola Ameobi struck home a wonderful left foot shot to spoil the party.
Tottenham’s player ratings:
Brad Friedel (7) : Did well when called upon. Made a terrific save from Taylor’s free-kick, but was left helpless with the goals conceded.
Kyle Walker (6) : Looked strong in the first half and made a few good runs, but his lack of positioning lets the young defender down. Looked very tired and sloppy by the end.
Kaboul (7) : Was one of our better players today, made countless headed clearances and looked strong.
King (6) : Hard to call as he went off so early. Looked sharp and cool at the back and was a big blow to see the Spurs captain off injured. Any chance of a clean sheet deteriorated once he left the pitch.
Ekotto (5) : You never know which Ekotto will turn up. Today wasn’t one of his best performances. Gave the ball away and got exposed too much in the second half.
Bale (5) : After performing so well and being influential for Wales, Spurs were unfortunate not to get the same player. Didn’t make an impact at all, lost the ball too easily and looked very lethargic.
Parker (6) : Wasn’t one of his finest performances on his return to St James’ Park. Definitely lost the battle to Tiote and was lucky not to receive a second yellow. More often than not he over-ran with the ball instead of doing the simple pass. Did make a few good tackles and interceptions it must be added.
Livermore (6) : Put in the shift, did a few good interceptions, won the ball to eventually set up Adebayor who won the penalty. Other than that, not too much to comment on. Had a steady game but not a type of player that can make a difference or do something special.
Modric (6) : Didn’t play in his favoured position and it showed. Modric failed to make an impact in the first half but in the second got a bit more involved. However his class showed when he did a lovely dink pass to set Adebayor through. The reason why he is so highly regarded by his peers. On the downside he let Jonas Gutierrez go past him too easily for the first goal and gave away too many fouls.
Van Der Vaart (6) : Gets a 6 for taking the penalty well. Beside that couldn’t really get into the game and went missing. Maybe he was half fit but still needs to put more of a shift in.
Adebayor (6) : Did well to win the penalty. Was tenacious and occasionally showed flashes of brilliance. Kept the ball well at times which allowed to bring players into the game. Didn’t have too many shots at goal and didn’t see enough of the ball.
Subs: Defoe (7.5) : Had 30 minutes to state why he should be in the team, and didn’t he do it well. Once again Defoe shows that he is one of deadliest finishers in the Premiership. His left foot shot was pure class and could have had a second. Maybe he could have squared it to Adebayor or Livermore but with Jermain being Jermain he only has one thing on his mind.
Bassong (5) : I’m praying for King to be fit for next week, because with Bassong at the back you just don’t feel confident. He is unreliable, careless and has awful positioning. We can pretty much forfeit any chances of a clean sheet with him in the back four.
Pav (-) Not worth mentioning, don’t think he even touched the ball.