Liverpool pay the price for a slow start as they surrender their unbeaten run in a 2-1 defeat at Tottenham Bale was at his flying, unplayable best in the opening quarter-of-an-hour and set up Lennon's opener before hitting a deflected free-kick for Spurs' second. Liverpool improved after the break and dominated before Bale's own goal, when he was unfortunate to deflect Lennon's goalline clearance, gave them hope. But it is a familiar story of wasted chances for Liverpool. Suarez needs support. Stay with us for all the post-match reaction.
90 + 4
FULL-TIME: TOTTENHAM 2 LIVERPOOL 1
90 + 3
Johnson receives a pass from Gerrard but his no options on the right and runs the ball out of play for a Tottenham throw-in. That could be it for Liverpool.
90 + 2
Liverpool gift the ball to Defoe on the edge of the box. But he is a little surprised. The ball still drops for Sigurdsson, however, his shot is deflected and an easy save for Reina.
90 + 1
Lennon does well to run down the clock by carrying the ball down the right before drawing the foul from Enrique. Possibly for dissent, the Liverpool player is booked.
ADDED TIME: There will be a minimum of four minutes added time before the final whistle.
Superb pass to Suarez from Enrique in a similar pattern to Liverpool's goal against Newcastle earlier this season. But Gallas gets in a vital interception inside the penalty area.
With the ball out of play, Tottenham replace Dembele with Huddlestone. Gallas is currently off the field having his right leg strapped.
Lloris looks concerned as a 30-yard Enrique effort flies just past his near post. Liverpool have Tottenham pinned in their own half.
Two corners in quick succession for Liverpool, again down the right. Dembele beats Agger to Shelvey's second delivery as he heads away down field.
Liverpool are piling on the pressure, with Luis Suarez 12/1 with Sky Bet to score next. Time is ticking, though.
Liverpool again get in down the right. Sterling gets to the byline but his cross to the near post comes to nothing. That has been a story of Liverpool's attacking play.
Play is back under way and Tottenham's fans are getting twitchy as groans meet another misplaced pass.
Break in play as Dembele receives treatment after taking a whack in an aerial challenge with Gerrard.
The corner is half-cleared by Tottenham but Liverpool remain on the attack. Agger looks to have carried the ball out of play at the byline on the left but play continues and Suarez blazes the cross over the bar. If that had gone in, Spurs would have been furious.
Another corner for Liverpool on the right. They have had a lot of success down that side in the second half. Sandro clears Suarez's cross after the striker had broken clear.
Liverpool use the break in play to introduce Assaidi in place of Downing. Enrique switches to left-back.
Not for the first time in his career, Bale is booked for diving. He went to ground expecting a slide challenge from Agger but the Dane had withdrawn his leg.
Tottenham are showing more intent to press the ball, which wins applause from the home fans.
Sandro is robbed by Enrique close to the halfway line. Suarez attempts an outrageous long-range effort but slices it and it goes out for a throw-in.
Spurs will likely have to withstand a lot of pressure in this final 15 minutes. Their fans are getting frustrated and are chanting 'attack, attack, attack'.
Liverpool deserved that goal. Spurs have looked nervous since half-time. Liverpool win another corner. Shelvey's first corner is cleared and then his follow-up cross is also headed away by Sandro.
From the corner, Bale is very unfortunate to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Lennon thinks he has cleared the ball off the line from a header but only whacks it into the face of Bale, who is poleaxed and deflects the ball into his own net. A comedy of errors.
OWN GOAL BALE (2-1)!!!
Suarez releases Johnson to the byline. His cross is met by Enrique on the six-yard line but Walker gets a crucial block for a corner.
It is Bale who takes the free-kick and his dipping left-foot effort curls just wide of the far post. Reina was diving at full-stretch and looked beaten.
Shelvey takes out Lennon with a high boot and is perhaps lucky not to be booked. The free-kick is 35 yards from goal and Bale is again over the ball.
Time is running out for Liverpool to get back into this, with Sky Bet offering 10/1 that they scrape a draw. Tottenham are odds-on (1/16) to see out the win but Suarez is the favourite to score next at 6/1.
For all their territorial advantage in the second half, Liverpool have not really troubled Lloris since the break.
Vertonghen holds off two Liverpool players to run the ball out of defence but then plays a pass behind Lennon to give away a throw-in close to the halfway line.
Enrique cannot be faulted for effort but in attacking areas he just lacks a bit of subtlety. He fouls Walker at the byline.
Liverpool make their change. Shelvey comes on in place of Henderson. Tottenham also make a substitution as Dempsey is replaced by another previous Liverpool target, Sigurdsson.
Dempsey takes the free-kick but hits it straight into the legs of the Liverpool wall. That was a waste and then he fouls Skrtel in attempting to regain possession.
Foolish foul by Allen on Dempsey right on the edge of the Liverpool box. The American was not really going anywhere and was tripped.
Walker looked like he was in trouble for a moment when chasing back to take a ball over his shoulder when under pressure from Enrique. But he controls the ball and runs out of danger.
Tottenham enjoy a bit of possession inside the Liverpool half to relieve a bit of the pressure. Dembele does very well to jink past Suarez and Gerrard.
It looks like Liverpool are getting ready to send on the attack-minded Shelvey. Henderson would be the likely player to be replaced.
More poor play from a Spurs defender as Vertonghen gives the ball straight back to Liverpool after a good Enrique run had been stopped by a crowd of players.
Liverpool fans are not happy as referee Dowd pulls play back for a foul to Tottenham. The resulting free-kick is hit long towards Dempsey, who fouls Allen.
Spurs have been very sloppy at the start of his half. Dawson gave the ball away earlier and now Gallas hits a pass out of play. Another Liverpool attack is only halted by an offside against Suarez. Correct decision.
I spoke too soon. Skrtel misjudges the bounce of the ball and Defoe can carry it forward. Dempsey takes over but is greedy when hitting an ambitious shot wide of the target when Defoe and Bale were in good positions.
Defoe is very isolated up front for Spurs. Dempsey is having to drop deep to try and regain Spurs some control in midfield.
Another corner to Liverpool as Lloris has to come out of his goal to dive at the feet of Suarez at the byline. Gerrard's corner is punched away by Lloris.
Gerrard's corner, not for the first time this evening, is poor and is cleared at the near post. But Liverpool remain camped in the Tottenham half.
Villas-Boas will be worried by how his side have started. Johnson takes the ball off Bale when he was trying to let it roll out for a throw-in. Dawson has to head Johnson's cross out for a corner.
Sloppy from Dawson as he gives Liverpool the ball. Suarez gets his head up and crosses to Enrique. The Spaniard is in acres of space but instead of nodding at goal he tries to set up Henderson and Spurs can clear.
Liverpool are dominating possession in these opening minutes and Downing is charging forward but, before he can cross, Lennon has tracked back well and tackles.
Liverpool have started on the front foot. Sterling beats Vertonghen at the byline but his low cross is not attacked by any team-mate and Spurs can clear at the near post.
A beautiful pass from Suarez with the outside of his right boot sends Enrique down the left. Sterling is in the box bit Enrique makes a mess of his cross.
Liverpool need Allen to have more of an impact in the second half if they are to find a way back into the game. He was outmuscled in the first half.
WE'RE BACK: Spurs, with their two-goal lead, get the second half going.
Tottenham's blistering start was too much for Liverpool, with Bale at his flying, unstoppable best when setting up Lennon's opener before seeing a free-kick deflects past Reina to make it 2-0 at the break. Liverpool came back into the game and had a Suarez effort cleared off the line. But they are still facing an extreme uphill task to rescue the game.
45 + 1
HALF-TIME: TOTTENHAM 2 LIVERPOOL 0
ADDED TIME: There will be a minimum of one minute added time before half-time.
Despite being 2-0 down, Liverpool still pose Tottenham a threat and they're currently 7/1 with Sky Bet to salvage a draw at White Hart Lane.
Corner to Liverpool as a Downing cross is cannoned by Dawson off Gallas. The ball rockets over the crossbar and could have been an own goal. Liverpool waste the corner.
Vertonghen is offered too much space by Sterling and the Spurs defender does not need a second invitation to take on the shot. He smacks a swerving effort harmlessly wide.
Lovely build-up from Spurs as Bale and Vertonghen exchange one-tow before play is switched to Lennon on the right. The winger's cross is cleared for a throw-in.
Tottenham are trying to get their foot on the ball to slow down Liverpool's play. But then they set off on another break forward.
Liverpool have been on top for the past 10 minutes. Unfortunately for Rodgers, Bale's unplayable start to the game means his team are still two goals down.
With Dempsey leading the counter-attack, Skrtel 'takes one for the team' as he slides in from behind to intentionally trip the American. Skrtel is rightly booked for a cynical foul.
It is a manic passage of play as a Liverpool corner causes panic in the Tottenham penalty area. Agger cannot get a shot away and Tottenham break up field.
Off the line by Walker. Gerrard darts into the penalty area and goes down under a challenge from Dembele. Liverpool are screaming for a penalty but play continues. Suarez is alert and taps a follow rolling towards the goal. But Walker is back to clear off his own line.
With 10 minutes plus added time to half-time, Spurs are taking their foot off the gas and Liverpool are coming into the game. A Johnson cross to the back post is just out of the reach of Suarez.
Agger brings the ball out of a defence carries it over the halfway line. But the move breaks down as Suarez is tackled.
Liverpool regain possession and there is some good build-up as Johnson nutmegs Vertonghen to dart into the penalty area. The ball rolls to Enrique but, on the swivel, he shoots straight at Lloris.
Spurs finally give the ball away and Liverpool are now passing around possession. But they are not really going anywhere. Suarez makes a run off his man but Johnson's pass is poor and intercepted by Dawson.
Liverpool have got 10 men behind the ball and Spurs are keeping possession as they attempt to stretch their opponents out of position.
Now it is Tottenham's turn to have control of the ball. They are passing around midfield. They are not in any rush with a two-goal cushion.
Liverpool are having a better spell of possession and have managed to take a bit of the sting out of Tottenham. But then Enrique then misplaces a pass to Suarez from inside the penalty area.
Suarez drifts past three Tottenham players before shooting from a tight angle. Lloris palms the shot up into the air before gathering at the second attempt.
This is a better phase for Liverpool. Downing gets to the byline and crosses to Enrique at the near post but the ball goes through the legs of the Spaniard as he attempts a shot.
Enrique finds the ball at his feet inside the Tottenham penalty area but he is then tackled by Walker among a pass of Spurs defenders.
The ball almost drops for Sterling around 30 yards from the Spurs goal but Dembele is able to clear up. Sterling has been very quiet so far this evening.
I said before kick-off that the battle between Bale and Johnson could be decisive. That is proving to be the case. Johnson does not defend well against Bale and is lucky to see the Spurs star's cross go whistling across the penalty area with any additional damage.
Allen and Henderson do not have the physical presence to stand up to Dembele and Dempsey at present. Liverpool might consider dropping Gerrard a bit deeper.
Spurs are rampant at the moment. Liverpool's central midfield is being overpowered. Dembele charges forward and sends a fizzing 25-yarder just over the crossbar.
Tottenham look like scoring every time they go forward. Defoe cuts in from the left from a Bale pass and sends a 25-yard effort skidding just wide of the near post.
Understandably, Tottenham are trying to give the ball to Bale as often as possible. Dawson sprays a pass out to the left but it is a bit too high for his team-mate, who only just keeps it in play.
Replays show Henderson's foul on Dempsey for the free-kick was minimal contact. It looked like Dempsey went down very easily but Henderson did have his hand on the American's shoulder.
Liverpool win a corner on their right. Gerrard takes the set-piece but it is a poor delivery and is cleared by Bale at the near post.
It is a dream start for Tottenham as Bale makes it 2-0. His free-kick deflects off a combination of Suarez and Henderson, who gave away the set-piece, to leave Liverpool facing a mountain to climb. Bale has been excellent.
GOAL BALE (2-0)!!!
Henderson fouls Dempsey from behind to give Tottenham another free-kick around 30 yards from goal.
Lloris is very lucky as Henderson should have scored. The Tottenham goalkeeper charges out of his area to intercept a pass to Enrique. But the ball deflects to Henderson. With the goal gaping, the midfielder shoots wide. He was under pressure from Walker. Terrible decision-making from Lloris.
Bale looks like he means business. He is sprinting everywhere when in range of the ball and is keeping Johnson very busy.
Suarez has been coming in to the game. But Johnson cannot find his team-mate with a long throw as he only succeeds in chucking the ball out for a goal-kick.
Liverpool have been looking for a quick reply. This has been a very fast-paced start to the game.
Liverpool remain on the front foot and Gerrard has two corners in quick succession. At the second delivery, referee Dowd gives a foul by Henderson on Lloris.
Great chance for Suarez after the ball breaks to him on the edge of the box. But, by the Uruguayan's high standards, it is tame finish as his attempt to curl the ball around Lloris only results in a shot straight at the goalkeeper.
Bale beats three Liverpool players down the left and crosses low to the back post. Downing, who is not a natural left-back, is guilty of ball watching and does not see Lennon's run, leaving the winger with a simple tap-in. Excellent play by Bale, who has started very strongly.
GOAL LENNON (0-1)!!!
From the corner, Downing dribbles the ball out of trouble for Liverpool and then releases Suarez. The striker passes to Gerrard in midfield and the Liverpool captain is robbed of possession. Spurs break and Bale shoots just wide. It has been an end-to-end start.
Allen fouls Dempsey and gives Tottenham a free-kick. It is about 35-40 yards from goal. Bale takes on the shot and Reina fumbles the swerving effort. Defoe is follows up but Johnson manages to scramble the ball out for a corner.
Lennon plays a one-two with Dempsey on the edge of the box and bursts into the 18-yard area to look for the return. But Skrtel steps in to hoof the ball away up field.
Gerrard hits a long ball for Enrique's run from left to right. Lloris comes off his line to gather and almost carries the ball out of his penalty area when skidding on his knees on the wet grass.
Liverpool do not make much of the throw-in and go backwards to their defence. They do, however, make sure they keep the ball.
Enrique bursts down the left but is blocked by a combination Lennon and Walker and Liverpool have a throw-in close to the corner flag.
KICK-OFF: Liverpool get the game going.
Here come the sides. Tottenham captain Dawson and Liverpool skipper Gerrard lead their respective team-mates out of the tunnel at White Hart Lane.
With less than five minutes to kick-off, here is a round-up of the team news in case you came in late. Dembele starts his first game in six weeks as Tottenham look to end Liverpool's eight-match unbeaten run. Steven Caulker is ruled out so Gallas returns to the starting line-up to partner Michael Dawson in defence. Liverpool name the same starting XI that drew 0-0 against Swansea, and Andre Wisdom is named on the visitors' bench after recovering from a knee injury.
Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert is in the stands at White Hart Lane. Villa play both Liverpool and Tottenham during December so he will be on a scouting mission.
I'm looking forward to watching the battle between an in-form Glen Johnson and flying Spurs winger Gareth Bale. It should be a great contest between that pair and could decide the match.
Danny Sewell says: "I think Gallas might be playing because Lloris is in goal. His English isn't that good so having a French speaking centre-half might be the reason. Can't see any other reason because Suarez will run him ragged."
Harry Charalambous says: "Only problem with the spurs line-up is Gallas and isn't it about time we see Coulibaly on the bench? 2-1 Spurs, Defoe and Bale."
Michael Pye says: "Good selection I think from AVB tonight. Yes, Lloris is a good choice. Back four is good. Great for Dembele to be back."
OPTA FACT: Liverpool have lost five and won just one of the last seven away games where Phil Dowd has been the referee, including two defeats at White Hart Lane. Liverpool have not drawn four Premier League away games in a row since 1996.
Frank O'Donnell says: "So happy to see Dembele back, let's hope we can get a good 60 out of him before Livermore comes in. Liverpool are so disjointed in midfield without Lucas, Dembele and Sandro should control game. 3-0 Hugo Clean sheet."
Ben Waring says: "Not good news that Gallas is starting for us, we look much better at the back without him. Glad to see Lloris and Dawson keep their places and even happier that Dembele is back! 1-0 Spurs, Defoe to score."
Adam Taylor says: "Brendan Rodgers has just made his night a hundred times harder now starting Downing left-back. He's a complete waste of space and nowhere near what we paid for him! I personally would have put Jose at left-back, Assaidi on the left wing and Sahin in the middle! But hopefully a 3-0 for Liverpool with Sterling with one and Suarez with two!"
David Russell says: "Why do all the Liverpool fans think Spurs are going to have a player sent off? Wishful thinking maybe."
Referee: P Dowd Assistants: S Burt, J Brooks Fourth official: G Ward
OPTA FACT: Spurs have scored a 90th minute goal in three of their last four Premier League games at home against Liverpool.
Are Tottenham fans pleased to see Dembele starting for the first time since the Aston Villa game on 7th October? Are you also happy with Hugo Lloris selected in goal for the fourth consecutive game? Let me have your thoughts.
There is also an interesting side-plot to tonight's games, with both managers having been considered as targets for the opposition in the past. Rodgers was supposedly targeted by Tottenham while he was still at Swansea City, while Villas-Bas was repeatedly linked with Liverpool before his doomed spell at Chelsea. Tottenham also wanted to sign Dempsey in the summer before the American joined Tottenham on transfer deadline day.
Daniel Morgan says: "Liverpool fan so hoping for 2-0 victory. Luis Suarez brace with a sending off for Spurs."
Byron Mubaiwa says: "I hate this Liverpool starting 11 it's so dysfunctional. Ah, if Allen doesn't tick, he needs to be benched. Why Henderson, though? Suso!"
So William Gallas and Mousa Dembele return to Tottenham's first XI from the weekend win over West Ham United. Liverpool go with the same line-up as started in the goalless draw with Swansea City. Will Stewart Downing again play at left-back? Let me have your thoughts at @SkySportsPeteF or email@example.com.
Tottenham team: Lloris, Walker, Dawson, Gallas, Vertonghen, Sandro, Dembele, Lennon, Dempsey, Bale, Defoe. Subs: Friedel, Naughton, Carroll, Huddlestone, Livermore, Sigurdsson and Townsend
Liverpool team: Reina, Johnson, Downing, Agger, Skrtel, Allen, Gerrard, Henderson, Enrique, Sterling, Suarez. Subs: Jones, Sahin, Assaidi, Carragher, Shelvey, Suso, Wisdom
Jonathan says: "Looking forward to a cracking night of football! Think this game could go either way, but being a Liverpool fan, I say 2:1 to the red men with a Suarez brace either side of a Bale goal.... Although I can see a red card for Dempsey."
But away from Carragher's misery, this promises to be an interesting game. Liverpool arrive at White Hart Lane on an eight-game unbeaten run in the league. But they have drawn five of those games to leave them 11th in the table. However, end a five-game losing run away to Spurs with a win and Brendan Rodgers' side would move just one point behind Andre Villas-Boas' seventh-placed hosts.
The Opta statistics are cruel on Liverpool's Jamie Carragher ahead of kick-off. He has scored the same amount of Premier League goals for Liverpool and Spurs (three goals/own goals). Only Robbie Keane (five) and Teddy Sheringham (four) have scored more Premier League goals for Spurs against Liverpool.
As we await the team news, you can get in touch throughout the evening with your thoughts on the line-ups, predicted scores and general opinions on the match at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter @SkySportsPeteF. A selection of the best comments will be published.
We can expect the team news in approximately 15 minutes ahead of kick-off at 19.45BST. Stay with us and for the line-ups as soon as we have the breaking news in North London.
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