Football: Spurs stutter, Gunners gain

Football: Spurs stutter, Gunners gain

Everton 0

Tottenham 0

LIVERPOOL - And the winners were… Arsenal.

Arsene Wenger's side preserved their five-point lead at the Premier League summit as Tottenham and Everton both squandered the opportunity to go second and close the gap on the leaders.

While the Gunners may prefer to see their fiercest rivals lose, they should nonetheless take pleasure from a Tottenham draw.

Whether others could is a moot point. This was no spectacle.

Andre Villas-Boas' side returned to the top four and extended their remarkable defensive record by keeping a 13th clean sheet in 17 matches this season.

Everton remain unbeaten in the league at Goodison Park in 2013, but those were statistical consolations in a sorry game when each missed the opportunity to capitalise on Chelsea and Liverpool's defeats on Saturday and leapfrog them.

Their chances of finishing in the top four surely depend on winning games, rather than preventing defeats, so this was not especially helpful.

For Tottenham, however, it was sadly typical.

Aided by the proceeds of Gareth Bale's world-record move to Real Madrid, they were English football's biggest spenders in the summer yet after the floods of millions leaving their bank account, goals have only arrived in a trickle, even though the vast majority of the money spent was on midfielders, wingers and a striker, Roberto Soldado.

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