Lamela and Lo Celso star as Spurs survive late scare to beat Boro
FA Cup, Tottenham Hotspur Stadium - Tottenham Hotspur 2 (Lo Celso 2, Lamela 15) Middlesbrough 1 (Saville 83)
Tottenham secured a 2-1 win as they edged past Middlesbrough in a keenly-contested FA Cup third round replay.
Jose Mourinho's men got off to a flyer when an error by visiting goalkeeper, Tomas Mejias allowed Giovani Lo Celso to seize possession and fire home inside two minutes.
Erik Lamela then doubled the advantage on 15 minutes with a powerful run and finish.
Jonathan Woodgate's Championship outfit did have their moments but substitute George Saville's smart strike seven minutes from time wasn't enough to stop them from falling to a first loss in seven outings.
The Lilywhites, who claimed a much-needed first win in five, will now look forward to a round four clash at Southampton on Saturday January 25.
Erik Lamela of Tottenham Hotspur celebrates scoring his sides second goal during the FA Cup Third Round Replay match between Tottenham Hotspur and Middlesbrough FC at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on January 14, 2020 in London, EnglandGetty Images
Spurs navigate tricky tie to get back on track. Mourinho will have been relieved to see the hosts motor into a two-goal lead inside 15 minutes as his out-of-form team overcame a potential banana skin. There's still a long way to go, but despite being in the last 16 of the Champions League, this competition represents his best chance of securing the silverware he was brought in to deliver. It's 12 years since Spurs lifted a trophy and you have to go way back to 1991 for the last time the eight-time winners won the FA Cup. It'll be a tall order without the injured Harry Kane, but the transfer window may yet provide a solution, while youngsters like Japhet Tanganga offer room for optimism in other departments within the team. Indeed, the 20-year-old once again caught the eye on his second appearance for the first team, but that late Boro goal means it is now just one clean sheet in 14 matches for Spurs under Mourinho.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Japhet Tanganga. (Tottenham). The young defender followed up his fine debut against Liverpool with another impressive display on the right side of defence. Strong at the back and powerful going forward, Tanganga was unlucky not to get on the scoresheet with a rasping first-half attempt.
TOTTENHAM: Gazzaniga 7, Sessegnon 7, Vertonghen 7, Sanchez 7, Tanganga 8, Dier 7, Winks 7, Lo Celso 8, Eriksen 7, Lamela 8, Lucas Moura 7. Subs: Son 7, Alli n/a.
MIDDLESBROUGH: Mejias 6, Howson 7, McNair 7, Fry 7, Spence 7, Wing 7, Johnson 7, Clayton 7, Liddle 7, Nmecha 7, Fletcher 7. Subs: Saville 7, Tavernier 6, Gestede 6.
2' - GOAL! Tottenham 1-0 Middlesbrough. Tomas Mejias plays a shocking ball out and pays the price. Giovani Lo Celso seizes upon it, cuts inside and rolls a neat finish into the bottom corner.
12' - MIDDLESBROUGH CHANCE! Lukas Nmecha collects a pass from Spence and turns past his man on the right side of the Spurs box, but sees his low shot brilliantly touched to safety by Paulo Gazzaniga.
15' - GOAL! Tottenham 2-0 Middlesbrough. The hosts double their money. Lamela wins possession and drives beyond two challenges before coolly slotting home.
41' - TOTTENHAM CHANCE! A lightning Spurs break sees Lamela feed Lucas Moura, who takes a superb first touch in his path at full throttle. He weaves towards the Boro goal and fizzes just wide from 25 yards out.
77' - MIDDLESBROUGH CHANCE! Saville lets fly with a swerving 25-yard effort that flashes just past the right-hand upright of Gazzaniga.
83' - GOAL! Tottenham 2-1 Middlesbrough. Boro have hope! Saville latches on to a knock down and fires a low 20-yard effort into the corner.
- Tottenham are unbeaten in 41 FA Cup home matches v sides from a lower division (34 wins).
- Giovani Lo Celso and Erik Lamela are the first pair of Argentinians to score in the same FA Cup match since Pablo Zabaleta and Sergio Agüero did so for Manchester City against Huddersfield back in March 2017.
- Boro have been knocked out in nine of their last 10 FA Cup ties with PL opposition.
- Mourinho has won 14 of his 15 FA Cup games against lower-league opposition. He has never lost a third-round tie.
- For just the second time during his 923-game managerial career, José Mourinho has seen one of his clubs concede at least once in nine consecutive matches in all competitions, also suffering the same fate with Chelsea between May and September 2015.