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Friday 08 November 2013

Europa League: Defoe sets record as Spurs go through

Tottenham Hotspur overcome FC Sheriff while Swansea City draw in Russia

  • Jermain Defoe scored his club record European goal from the penalty spot

  • Erik Lamela celebrates after scoring his first goal for the club

Jermain Defoe scored a club record 23rd European goal as Tottenham Hotspur recorded their fourth win in the UEFA Europa League while Swansea City conceded late on to draw with Kuban Krasnodar.

Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 FC Sheriff

Tottenham Hotspur striker Jermain Defoe sealed his place in the record books as Spurs reached the knock-out stage of the UEFA Europa League with victory over Sheriff Tiraspol.

The 31-year-old converted a 67th-minute penalty, his 23rd European goal for the club, to move ahead of Martin Chivers' record.

"We are all particularly happy for him," said Spurs head coach Andre Villas-Boas. "It is a great honour and will stay in time like Martin's and will be very difficult to break.

"I hope it means this club will continue on this competition in to the later stages to make it even more prestigious for him."

And Defoe revealed that encouraging words from Chivers at half-time helped spur him on to break the record.

"It's not really sunk in yet"
Jermain Defoe

"He said 'keep going, you can do it, you can break the record' and that calmed me down a bit," said Defoe. "It's crazy how it all happened. I came down the tunnel and he was there, smiling. He wanted me to do it and it's fantastic. It really means a lot. He's a legend at this club and to be at the top now, I'm delighted. It's an amazing feeling. It's not really sunk in yet."

Argentina winger Erik Lamela caught the eye with an impressive performance and he scored the opening goal, his first since his summer transfer from Roma, on 60 minutes before winning the penalty that Defoe converted.

Ismail Isa pulled a goal back for FC Sheriff with 18 minutes to go but Spurs held on to maintain their 100% record in the competition this season.

"It was a good second-half performance, good combination play, more penetration, more shots, more crosses," added Villas-Boas. "It's a pity they scored when we were on top of the game because we could have gone on to score some more. We take great satisfaction in qualifying after four games."

Spurs are in Barclays Premier League action against Newcastle United on Sunday and you can catch all the action with Matchday Live. For all the build-up click here.

Kuban Krasnodar 1-1 Swansea City

Swansea City conceded another late goal as they drew with Russian side Kuban Krasnodar.

Wilfried Bony put the visitors ahead with a low shot after nine minutes and, with the dismissal of Kuban Krasnodar defender Xandao with 15 minutes to go, it looked as if the Swans would go on to claim a vital three points.

"If we win our next game then we are through"
Michael Laudrup

But with time running out, Ibrahima Balde struck with a looping shot to deny Michael Laudrup's team at the death, just as Krasnodar did at the Liberty Stadium with Djibril Cisse's penalty in October.

"It was quite an open game but I thought we did well," said Laudrup. "We had some good chances on the counter attack in the second half, but their goal was from a good pass and a great finish.

"I feel really sorry for the boys because they deserved to win the game. But overall, I'm pleased with the performance and reaction from the players."

Swansea now lie second in their group, one point behind Valencia, with two matches to play.

"If we win our next game then we are through," added Laudrup. "We can decide our own fate and that is always good."

Swansea City host Stoke City in the Barclays Premier League on Sunday and you can catch all the action with Matchday Live. For all the build-up click here.

UEFA Europa League results

Group A
Kuban Krasnodar 1-1 Swansea City (Bony)
St Gallen 2-3 Valencia

Group K
Tottenham Hotspur (Lamela, Defoe) 2-1 FC Sheriff
Tromso 0-1 Anji Makhachkala

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Key Points

  • Tottenham Hotspur striker Jermain scores a club record 23rd European goal against FC Sheriff
  • Spurs win 2-1 and reach the knock-out stage of UEFA Europa League
  • Swansea City are still on course after drawing 1-1 against Kuban Krasnodar