- Title: Alli double for Tottenham ends Chelsea's winning streak
- Date: 4th January 2017
- Summary: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM (JANUARY 4, 2017) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (English) CHELSEA MANAGER, ANTONIO CONTE, SAYING: "We are disappointed but I think also that we must be pleased with our run. To win 13 games in a row is not easy in this league and also today we lost against a really good team, a really strong team. Don't forget that Tottenham fought last season to win the title and Pochettino is working with this team for many years and they are improving a lot. For me, Tottenham is one of the six teams that can fight until the end to win the title or to find a place in the Champions League."
- Embargoed: 19th January 2017 23:35
- Keywords: Tottenham Chelsea soccer Mauricio Pochettino Antonio Conte Delle Alli
- Location: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM
- City: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM
- Country: United Kingdom
- Topics: Soccer,Sport
- Reuters ID: LVA0065XNZHVJ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Tottenham Hotspur denied Chelsea a record 14th consecutive Premier League win and loosened their grip on the title race as two Dele Alli headers secured a 2-0 victory at a rocking White Hart Lane on Wednesday (January 4).
After Tottenham's own title dream last season ended in a tumultuous 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge in May, there was a particular satisfaction that they stopped the Chelsea bandwagon.
Arsenal still hold the record for consecutive Premier League wins although their streak included 13 at the end of 2001-02 and one more at the beginning of the following campaign.
Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino praised the competitive spirit of his players and said that factor could be the difference this season, after his side's poor end to the last campaign cost them the title.
"We are very pleased because, for me, the most important thing was that we show great character and we were very competitive. Maybe that was the problem last season; that we missed to compete in a better way," said the Argentine after the match.
Spurs have now reduced the gap between them and Chelsea to seven points and Pochettino believes the race for the title and for a top four finish could go down to the wire.
"I think now the top four is very competitive, is very close and it is true that the gap is important still, for Chelsea, but I think it was the perfect thing for us to arrive to third place and be close. That is important for us and there are a lot of games to arrive before the end of the season and I think a lot can happen in football."
Antonio Conte's side were not at their best although there was little between the sides in a high-tempo derby that thankfully never descended into the kind of indiscipline that resulted in 12 bookings in the Bridge battle of last season.
The 50th Premier League clash between the London rivals was an engrossing tactical affair with chances at a premium.
In the end it was decided by two carbon-copy goals either side of halftime -- both created by the precision of Tottenham's Danish playmaker Christian Eriksen.
Eriksen was a whisker away from giving his side the lead midway through the first half with shot that flew just wide.
Yet it was one of his trademark deliveries that led to Tottenham's opener in first-half stoppage time.
Given too much time to pick his spot, he whipped in a right-footed cross that Alli headed past Thibaut Courtois.
Chelsea upped the pace at the start of the second half and Eden Hazard wasted their best chance when he stooped to head a bouncing ball wide at the far post under no pressure.
Alli showed him how to do it minutes later when Eriksen again sent in a lethal cross and the young England midfielder found too much space to head past Courtois.
After a slow start to the season Alli now has 10 goals and has netted seven in his last four games.
"We are disappointed but I think also that we must be pleased with our run. To win 13 games in a row is not easy in this league and also today we lost against a really good team, a really strong team," said Conte.
"Don't forget that Tottenham fought last season to win the title and Pochettino is working with this team for many years and they are improving a lot. For me, Tottenham is one of the six teams that can fight until the end to win the title or to find a place in the Champions League."
Tottenham's fifth consecutive victory lifted them from fifth to third with 42 points from 20 games, ahead of Man City on goal difference and one point above Arsenal.
Chelsea, who could have set a new record for consecutive wins during a single season, still lead second-placed Liverpool by five points after 20 games with Tottenham seven adrift.
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