LONDON • Ryan Mason scored and was then stretchered off as Tottenham Hotspur won 1-0 at Sunderland yesterday to record their first victory of the Premier League season.
Sunderland were on top for three-quarters of the match at the Stadium of Light, hitting the post through Tottenham old boy Jermain Defoe. But it was Spurs who prevailed when substitute Erik Lamela teed up Mason for an 82nd-minute winner.
The England international left the fray moments later after hurting his knee, but his goal proved enough to lift Mauricio Pochettino's side to 12th place, leaving Dick Advocaat's Sunderland bottom of the table.
"It's another clean sheet, the first victory of the league after five games, and now we can move on," Tottenham manager Pochettino told Sky Sports.
"This will help us with our confidence for the next games."
Spurs handed South Korean forward Son Heung Min, the £22 million (S$47 million) recruit from Bayer Leverkusen, a debut hours after releasing Togo striker Emmanuel Adebayor from his contract.
But Harry Kane and Defoe were the centre of attention for their respective teams - the former seeking his first Spurs goal of the season, the latter facing his former club.
Defoe and Sunderland set the tempo. Jeremain Lens supplied the spark, curling a shot wide from outside the box and then releasing Defoe with a superb through ball that pierced the Tottenham defence.
The striker had only Hugo Lloris to beat, but scuffed his shot against the left-hand post.
Lloris saved twice, first from team-mate Kyle Walker, who turned a cross from Defoe towards his own goal, and then Defoe, who spun Toby Alderweireld but fired straight at the France international.
Pochettino turned to Andros Townsend and Lamela and the England winger carved out a great chance for Kane with a deep cross from the right, only for the Spurs No. 10 to miscue horribly.
The visitors went ahead when a neat 15-pass move culminated in Lamela freeing Mason and despite a loose first touch, the midfielder managed to dink a shot past Costel Pantilimon and into the bottom-left corner.