Tottenham boss explains special tactics behind rare clean-sheet in 1-0 Crystal Palace win

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Tottenham kept their first clean sheet in the league since February thanks to a change in system and a Harry Kane goal.

Ryan Mason secured his first win since taking over from Cristian Stellini following a 1-0 win over Crystal Palace in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon.

The Lilywhites deserved it in the end but they were made to work for it and almost ended the game hanging on to secure the win that keeps their European ambitions alive.

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As has often been the case, Harry Kane headed home the only goal of the game to secure all three points and on a personal note, go above Wayne Rooney as the second-highest scorer in Premier League history with 209 goals.

Mason also showed tactical flexibility to go back to playing a four-man defence, dropping Eric Dier and naming Clément Lenglet alongside Cristian Romero at the heart of the defence.

The returning Emerson Royal played at right back and Ben Davies worked on the left side of defence to form a strong backline that delivered the first clean sheet since February.

A clustered midfield had Pierre-Emile Højbjerg, Oliver Skipp, Son Heung-min, and Pedro Porro all grafting with Richarlison and Harry Kane up top.

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Son Heung-min did look like playing out wide and dropping into midfield when Tottenham were without the ball all game.

Speaking after the match, Mason said he wanted to be more aggressive; “We wanted to engage Palace higher up the pitch and avoid them getting into our final third.

“We added a sixth man into the press and tried to be more aggressive. We have to congratulate the players because it’s late to take on those changes in a week.”

The win takes Tottenham into sixth in the Premier League table above Brighton, but the Seagulls have played three games less.

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