FT: FC Sheriff 0 Spurs 2

The final whistle goes and Tottenham have strengthened their grip on top spot in Europa League Group K thanks to a 2-0 away win. They have been made to work hard by a spirited FC Sheriff side but an early goal from Vertonghen and Defoe's late strike, which brought him level with a club record, have made the difference.

89
Naughton is back on the pitch but does not look entirely comfortable and Spurs would be advised not to give him too many passes.

88
Isa, who has been a constant menace up front, is replaced for the closing stages by Paireli.

87
Naughton staggers over to the touchline after suffering a knock and Spurs may have to see out the final few minutes with just ten men as they have used all their substitutions.

86
Tottenham's players are still full of energy as they launch a swift counter-attack, before Chadli loses control of the ball and concedes a foul inmidfield.

84
Fernando comes on for the final stages for Sheriff in place of Cadu.

83
Defoe is denied by a smart save from Tomic after receiving a clever pass from Holtby, but the flag is already up for offside.

82
Sheriff nearly grab a lifeline as Luvannor releases Isa with a defence-splitting pass but he pokes his shot wide of the onrushing Lloris and his left-hand post.

80
Holtby is a versatile performer capable of playing in an advanced role, but at the moment he has settled into a central midfield position.

78
Defoe's goal appears to have knocked the stuffing out of Sheriff, as Tottenham dominate possession and make their opponents chase shadows.

76
Villas-Boas shuffles his pack for a third and final time as he brings on Holtby for Sandro.

75
GOAL! Defoe doubles Tottenham's lead with a fierce strike from 25 yards which takes a wicked deflection to guide it past a stranded Tomic. That is a big goal for Spurs and a big goal for Defoe, who has now drawn level with Chivers' club-record mark of 22 European goals.

73
Chiriches cuts inside from a deep position and sends a swerving shot high and side from long range, leaving Lennon to wonder why he did not pass it out wide.

72
Tottenham breathe a sigh of relief as Ricardinho shoots from 20 yards and the ball crashes into Dawson's back-hell, deflecting it agonisingly wide of Lloris' right-hand post.

71
Naughton gets forward on an overlapping run down the left and Chadli tries to play him in, but Sheriff's defence holds firm.

70
Moyal has to go off and it is Furdui who comes on in his place for Sheriff.

69
Moyal stays down after picking up a knock and signals to the bench that he needs some treatment from the physios.

68
Lennon has the chance to turn and run at the Sheriff defence for probably the first time and after a burst of speed he drags a low shot from 20 yards against Tomic's right-hand post. So close to a second goal for Spurs.

66
Dembele links up well with Defoe and then Chadli before Tottenham win a corner, which is easily cleared by the home side.

64
Tottenham enjoy another spell of possession in midfield but have generally lacked a cutting edge this evening and created very little apart from Vertonghen's goal.

62
The ineffective Lamela is replaced by Chadli for the final half hour as Villas-Boas makes his second change of the night.

61
Moyal goes into the book as he is cautioned for a foul in midfield.

60
There are huge appeals for a Sheriff penalty as Sandro slides in for a tackle on Isa and sends the Sheriff man tumbling. The referee is not convinced and replays show he did win the ball.

59
Paye goes down following a challenge from Lamela and the Tottenham player appeared to lead in with his elbow, but the referee does not think there is anything untoward and waves play on.

58
Eriksen looks the most likely Spurs player to create a second goal as he curls a cross in from the left which drifts all the way through for Tomic to claim the ball.

56
Spurs win a free-kick 35 yards from goal and Eriksen tries to deceive Sheriff by playing it short to Sandro, but the Brazilian's shot is well blocked as two defenders converge.

54
Stanojevic lets fly with a strike from 25 yards which has plenty of power but no precision and it sails high into the stands.

53
Lloris has perfected the art of the sweeper keeper as he rushes out of his area to deal with a potentially threatening long ball.

52
Defoe and Lennon show excellent movement to cross their runs as Eriksen leads a Tottenham charge. He opts to play in Defoe and the striker's low shot from 18 yards is tame, allowing Tomic to make a routine save.

51
Tottenham are showing few signs that they have learned from their first-half mistakes as they are saved by the offside flag once again, before Chiriches has to make a well-timed tackle to break up another promising Sheriff move.

49
Lamela wastes an opportunity to make a contribution as he spends too long on the ball after being played in by Eriksen down the right, and eventually surrenders possession with a loose pass.

47
Eriksen tries to thread a pass through to Defoe but the ball is well intercepted by Balima.

46
Tottenham get us started in the second half and there have been no further changes. There is news from the other game in the group, where Anzhi have beaten Tromso to ensure that Spurs cannot now qualify this evening.

The half-time whistle goes and Tottenham have a slender advantage thanks to Vertonghen's early goal against the run of play. Sheriff have created a number of good chances, though, and will be confident of hitting back and getting something from this match.

45
Chiriches becomes the first player to receive a yellow card following a foul on Ricardinho, and he will have to be extra careful after the interval.

44
Spurs enjoy a spell of possession at the back as they look to keep their focus and reach half-time with a lead. They will then have a chance to regroup after being second best at times in the opening 45 minutes.

42
Tottenham's defence comes under pressure once again as Luvannor picks up possession just inside the box, but the flag is raised for offside.

40
Vertonghen brings the ball out of defence to help Tottenham in attack but Lamela's final shot from the edge of the area fails to get past the first man.

39
Isa causes more trouble for the Tottenham defence and his pass in the area ricochets nicely for Luvannor, who blazes narrowly over the bar from 12 yards when he perhaps should have equalised.

38
Lamela finds Defoe with a clever reverse pass but Sheriff have so many bodies back that they can crowd out the striker.

36
Lennon and Lamela have switched wings momentarily in an effort to give Sheriff some fresh problems, and a move down the left results in Defoe taking a first-time shot from 25 yards which flies over Tomic's bar.

34
Fryers is forced off after picking up a knock, maybe to his groin, and Villas-Boas throws on Dawson. It looks as though he will play in the centre with Vertonghen, as Naughton moves over to the left and Chiriches fills in at right-back.

32
Another close shave for Tottenham as Isa is played in by an excellent pass and this time there is no offside, but the Sheriff forward just bends his hot wide of the far post.

31
The stadium erupts as Sheriff's fans think they have the leveller they have worked so hard for, but the flag is up for offside. It was a great move from the home team and calm finish past Lloris from Cadu, but replays show the assistant referee just made the correct call.

29
Lamela, Lennon and Defoe combine nicely before Eriksen tries his luck with a shot from 25 yards which is blocked by a defender.

28
It has been a frustrating night so far for the likes of Eriksen and Lamela as Sheriff stay deep when they don't have the ball and compress the space.

26
Tottenham build a patient attack with some slick passing but the final ball from Lamela is too ambitious as he attempts to chip through for Defoe to chase and his touch is too heavy.

24
Lennon is proving a useful outlet down the right but on this occasion his cross is poor as he fails to pick out a team-mate in the centre.

22
There is a good tempo to the game and it is very open as Sheriff go in search of an equaliser, and the duel between Isa and Chiriches is particularly compelling as the speedy winger goes up against a composed defender.

20
Lennon has a glorious chance to double Tottenham's advantage as Eriksen's neat flick sends the returning winger through in oceans of space. He is one on one with the goalkeeper but Tomic stands tall before making a smart save with his legs.

19
Vertonghen cuts out a menacing left-wing cross following another dangerous break from Sheriff, before Moyal drills a low shot narrowly wide from 20 yards.

17
The crowd is roaring Sheriff on and Tottenham, despite being in front, will be slightly concerned about the pattern of play.

15
A fantastic goal-line clearance keeps Tottenham's lead intact as Luvannor goes round Lloris and shoots firmly on target, only to see Chiriches scrambling back to make a vital interception. That is as important a contribution as Vertonghen's goal.

14
Sheriff respond well as an ambitious shot comes in from all of 45 yards which does not trouble Lloris remotely, but moments later Isa does embark on a dangerous run before going for goal and missing when a pass would have been the better option.

12
GOAL! Tottenham take the lead and silence the stadium as Eriksen sends in a pinpoint cross from the right and Vertonghen, captain for the night, rises highest to head powerfully home.

11
A great piece of skill from Chiriches to turn his defender in a dangerous area sets Tottenham on the attack for the first time and Lennon wins a corner when his cross is cut out.

10
Naughton is dispossessed after dwelling on the ball a little too long but he puts up a good fight to try and get the ball back.

9
Dembele and Sandro are a formidable pairing in the middle of the park but Sheriff are competing well and not letting them settle at all.

8
Isa looks a yard quicker than Chiriches right now and he chases another seemingly lost cause to get Sherriff a corner, which is partially cleared before being delivered back into the box for Lloris to gather safely.

7
Chiriches has a nervous moment in defence as he tries to hold off Isa, who is a bit too zealous with his challenge and concedes a free-kick.

5
Spurs are seeing plenty of the ball in the early stages but Sheriff look well organised at the back and it will be hard work to find a breakthrough.

4
Another decent corner poses a test to Tottenham's defensive unit, but this time it is Lloris who excels himself with a strong punch clear.

3
Sheriff appear keen to try and hit Tottenham on the counter-attack, as Isa chases a long ball and does well to win a corner. The delivery from Luvannor is outstanding but Vertonghen crouches to steer a defensive header over the bar for another corner.

2
It is a slow start as Tottenham pass it around casually at the back with little pressure coming from the home side.

1
Sheriff kick off the Group K contest on a night when Tottenham will be trying to make further progress towards the last 32. Let us hope for an exciting encounter.

Jermain Defoe has been the star of Tottenham's continental campaign so far and has taken his European career tally to 21, just one goal shy of Martin Chivers' club-record haul. There is another chance for the England striker to shine this evening, while Aaron Lennon makes his first start since recovering from a foot injury. Hugo Lloris, Jan Vertonghen, Vlad Chiriches and Sandro are the only survivors from the side that beat Aston Villa 2-0 in the Premier League on Sunday as Villas-Boas makes seven changes, so it is a big night for the likes of Erik Lamela. There could also be a first appearance of the season for Emmanuel Adebayor, who has spent time training with the reserves after falling out of favour but is back on the substitutes' bench in Moldova.

Get in touch with your views and predictions ahead of the game at Lewis.Rutledge@bskyb.com, or via Twitter @SkySportsLewis. Will Spurs cruise to a third straight victory in Europa League Group K or could there be a surprise in store? The team news is in so which players are you particularly looking forward to following?

FC Sheriff: Tomic, Balima, Metoua, Samardzic, Paye, Moyal, Stanojevic, Ricardinho, Cadu, Luvannor, Isa. Subs: Stajila, Furdui, Paireli, Scripcenco, Fernando, William, Pascenco.

Tottenham: Lloris, Naughton, Chiriches, Vertonghen, Fryers, Dembele, Sandro, Lamela, Eriksen, Lennon, Defoe. Subs: Friedel, Soldado, Adebayor, Holtby, Dawson, Chadli, Sigurdsson.

Andre Villas-Boas' men could even seal a place in the last 32 if the other game in the group, between Anzhi Makhachkala and Tromso, finishes as a draw. Tottenham have a four-point lead after a 3-0 win at home over the Norwegians and a 2-0 victory in Russia. Sheriff, the champions of Moldova, have drawn both their matches so far and will now be aiming to consolidate second place.

Good evening and welcome to our minute-by-minute commentary of Tottenham's Europa League game away to FC Sheriff. Spurs are currently top of Group K after winning their opening two matches with ease, and they will be looking to take another big step towards the knockout stages with another win tonight.

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