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Tottenham tumble to late West Brom strike

Football
Sun, 06 May 2018


London: Jake Livermore kept alive West Bromwich Albion’s slender hopes of avoiding relegation as his last-gasp strike clinched a dramatic 1-0 win over Tottenham, while Stoke were relegated after a 2-1 defeat against Crystal Palace yesterday.

Albion knew only three points at the Hawthorns would be enough to stave off relegation for a few hours at least.

With Darren Moore’s side just minutes away from dropping into the Championship, Livermore sparked wild celebrations when the midfielder prodded home after a goal-mouth scramble two minutes into stoppage time.

Incredibly, Albion were on the brink of relegation again just hours later when fellow strugglers Southampton took a second-half lead through Nathan Redmond at Everton.

But, with just seconds left in stoppage time, Tom Davies’s deflected strike rescued a 1-1 draw for Everton and stopped West Brom being relegated for now.

West Brom, owned by Chinese entrepreneur Guochuan Lai, are two points from safety with one game left as they fight to extend their eight-season stay in the Premier League.

Albion’s last game of the season is at Palace next Sunday, but they will go down if there is a winner between third-bottom Swansea and fourth-bottom Southampton at the Liberty Stadium on Tuesday. A draw would take the relegation battle down to the last weekend.

Since replacing the sacked Alan Pardew in early April, Moore has masterminded a significant improvement in Albion’s form.

Wins over Manchester United, Newcastle and Tottenham, as well as a draw against Champions League finalists Liverpool, have kept them dreaming of an epic escape act.

Southampton, who had Japanese defender Maya Yoshida sent off in the 86th minute, were crushed by Davies’s late intervention.

But Mark Hughes’ side do climb out of the relegation zone, sitting above Swansea on goal difference heading into that crunch clash in midweek.

Huddersfield, two points above the bottom three, are also in trouble as they prepare to face champions Manchester City today.

Fourth-placed Tottenham’s defeat leaves them five points ahead of fifth-placed Chelsea, who can close the gap in the race to qualify for the Champions League if they beat Liverpool today.

Swansea missed a chance to boost their survival bid as Bournemouth won 1-0. West Ham look set to avoid relegation after a 2-0 win at Leicester, Watford beat Newcastle 2-1 to guarantee their top-flight status.

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