Alli header helps Spurs see off spirited Newcastle

Anthony Knockaert of Brighton & Hove Albion goes down in the box as he is challenged by Anthony Martial of Manchester United during the Premier League match between Brighton and Hove

Anthony Knockaert of Brighton & Hove Albion goes down in the box as he is challenged by Anthony Martial of Manchester United during the Premier League match between Brighton and Hove

They overcame Newcastle 2-1 after an action-packed first 20 minutes at St James' Park.

Jan Vertonghen gave Spurs the lead but Joselu equalized with a lovely header, then Alli also scored a header at the back post to cap a wild spell in the first half.

Pochettino's belief is strengthened by Tottenham's success in persuading a number of key players, including England striker Harry Kane - the World Cup golden boot victor - to sign new contracts.

The season kicked-off to the backdrop of a protest staged by hundreds of Newcastle fans outside the nearby branch of Mike Ashley's Sports Direct.

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has defended Harry Kane by saying his star striker can not score a hat-trick every week after a sluggish display against Newcastle on Saturday.

Newcastle showed flashes of quality football, especially with Joselu's equalizing header in the 11th minute.

But thanks to more questionable defending, their parity lasted just seven minutes.

An increasingly open second period surprisingly failed to produce further addition to the score, as both goalkeepers excelled.

Mauricio Pochettino's Spurs were rarely at their fluent best - fatigue possibly a factor for the five World Cup semi-finalists in his starting XI - and Mohamed Diame and new signing Salomon Rondon were denied by the post and crossbar as Newcastle chased a second equaliser in vain.

Newcastle's Slovakian keeper provided an even better stop to keep out a well-struck effort from Moussa Sissoko.

Not to be outdone at the other end, Lloris stood up well to block Ayoze Perez's shot.

He took up a position on the left of midfield, regularly helping Ben Davies, and gained possession nine times for Spurs, more than any of his team-mates.

But anything less than a convincing victory will stir debate about Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy's failure to deliver new players for his manager at the start of a campaign that will see the club move into the rebuilt White Hart Lane stadium after a year at Wembley.

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