Spurs Remain in Champions League Hunt With 2-2 Draw at Chelsea
Tottenham came from behind to tie 2-2 at Chelsea in English soccer’s Premier League, though missed the chance to move into the top four as three teams fight for the remaining two Champions League spots.
Gylfi Sigurdsson’s goal with 10 minutes remaining earned Spurs the draw at Stamford Bridge in west London last night. Emmanuel Adebayor also scored for Tottenham, while Oscar and Ramires got Chelsea’s goals in the first half.
The result keeps Chelsea in third place with 69 points, two more than Arsenal and three ahead of Tottenham, with two matches remaining. The top three teams in the standings qualify for the Champions League group stage next season, while the fourth enters a playoff.
Premier League champion Manchester United and second-place Manchester City have already secured spots in Europe’s elite club competition. Chelsea would have gone six points ahead of Tottenham with a win last night and virtually clinched a place as its goal difference is far superior to Spurs.
Chelsea, which faces Benfica in the Europa League final on May 15, visits Aston Villa and plays Everton at Stamford Bridge in its final two matches. Arsenal hosts Wigan before going to Newcastle, while Tottenham is at Stoke and hosts Sunderland.
“We have to think about winning the next game and being ready for the final,” Chelsea interim manager Rafael Benitez said. “We have to manage players, manage the squad and find the balance. We have to win one game to get in the top four.”
Spurs tied it 16 minutes later as Adebayor picked up the ball in his own half, carried it deep into the Chelsea end and curled a shot into the top right corner.
Tottenham made it 2-2 with 10 minutes left as Adebayor back-heeled a pass from Benoit Assou-Ekotto to Sigurdsson, who took one touch before shooting past Petr Cech.
“Our focus will be to continue to do our job and hopefully with the teams Arsenal and Chelsea have to play, fighting for survival, something can happen,” Tottenham coach Andre Villas-Boas said. “Anything can happen. The Premier League is completely unpredictable.”
To contact the reporter on this story: Bob Bensch in London at firstname.lastname@example.org.