FA CUP FIFTH ROUND REPLAY: Defoe double as Tottenham overcome Stevenage
Tottenham are through to the final eight of the FA Cup courtesy of a 3-1 win over League One outfit Stevenage at White Hart Lane tonight.
Jermain Defoe scored a double for the victorious Spurs who put two heavy Premier League losses behind them to eventually get past a defiant Stevenage team who had done so well to hold Harry Redknapp's team to a scoreless draw in the initial tie at Broadhall Way a few weeks ago.
Stevenage took the ascendency early in the piece when Joel Byrom was brought down in the area by Ryan Nelsen with referee Michael Oliver pointing to the spot. Byrom stepped up and sent Carlo Cudicini the wrong way to give the Boro an unlikely lead.
Just over 20 minutes later, Spurs were back on level terms when Gareth Bale picked out Jermain Defoe from the inside the home team's defensive third with the diminutive striker controlling well before turning and hitting a sweet volley into the back of the net with his left foot from outside the area.
Less than ten minutes into the second half, Tottenham were the recipients of a harsh penalty call on Stevenage when Mark Roberts caught Gareth Bale right near the byline with Emmanuel Adebayor dispatching the spot kick to give the home side a 2-1 lead.
With 15 minutes remaining, Spurs wrapped up proceedings when Bale threw a clever long ball down the left flank for Defoe to cut back into the area and fire into Chris Day's bottom left corner from an angle for his second.
Earlier in the second half, Defoe had the ball in the back of the net with a brilliant finish with a back flick from Younes Kaboul's low cross from the right but the goal was disallowed for offside. Minutes later Cudicini kept Spurs in the contest when he denied Mark Roberts' shot from close range after a goalmouth scramble.
Bale rattled the crossbar with a long range effort just after the hour-mark not long before Stevenage were so close to a leveler when Roberts' header hit the woodwork before Bale managed to clear it off the line.
But in the end, Tottenham were able to overpower their plucky opponents to progress to the quarter-finals where they will host Premier League rivals Bolton on March 17.
The win, however, came at a cost as Michael Dawson and Aaron Lennon had to go off injured in the first half with centre-back Dawson taken to hospital with suspected ruptured ankle ligaments and also a suspected knee injury.
FA Cup fifth round replay
White Hart Lane, London - 36,000