Spurs beat West Ham in Asia Trophy derby
BEIJING: Tottenham Hotspur beat London rivals West Ham Wednesday to book a place in the Barclays Asia Trophy final after England national Jermain Defoe shot through the legs of keeper Paul Green.
Defoe was sent into the box and managed to hold off Hammers' defender Juilein Faubert to fire through advancing keeper Green, who turned to watch the ball cross the line at an almost comical crawl.
Spurs should have converted on several occasions against but for all the impressive link-up play and darting runs, they lacked the killer punch, wasting numerous chances before Defoe broke the deadlock on 78 minutes.
Spurs deserved their hard-won victory over a lacklustre West Ham who lacked inspiration for most of the 90 minutes.
Captain Luka Modric had his effort blocked by a fine save by Robert Green at full stretch but the England squad keeper was to err only minutes later.
Keiron Dyer came on for the second half and gave the Hammers something resembling a potent force and Luis Jimenez went at the near post on the hour.
Robbie Keane came close to making it 2-0 when he was just inches away in the six yard box from connecting onto a low cross that evaded the Hammers defence and keeper on 83 minutes.
Spurs were clearly superior on all fronts, looking match fit after their Wembley Cup appearances at the weekend.
Manager Harry Redknapp will be pleased with the link play between his strike force of Defoe, Roman Pavlyuchenko and Keane, who came on in the second half for the Russian, ahead of the arrival of weekend signing Peter Crouch.
The impressive Jamie O'Hara and Bennoit Assou-Ekotto will also bring comfort to the manager as his defensive concerns continued.
West Ham boss Gianfranco Zola's season injury woes began early as veteran midfielder Luis Boa Morte -- who turns 32 next month -- was stretchered off to hospital with a suspected torn knee ligament after tussling with impressive Spurs defender Benoit Assou-Ekotto after 11 minutes.
The Portugal international looked in pain as he was carried off surrounded by medics.
West Ham wilted in the humidity and smog that wrapped itself around the one-third filled stadium and looked exhausted by the end of the first half.