Tottenham Hotspur are just a single point away from catching Arsenal in fourth place after trouncing their rivals 3-0 in the north London derby Thursday.
Harry Kane scored twice, extending his record as the fixture’s top scorer to 13 goals, and Heung-Min Son added another in Tottenham’s biggest Premier League win over Arsenal. The result also loosens Arsenal’s grip on the final Champions League spot with two matches remaining in the campaign.
Spurs ran away with the three points after Arsenal defender Rob Holding was sent off in the 33rd minute for fouling Son. It was Holding’s second yellow-card offense in the space of seven minutes, with both coming against the South Korean international.
The Gunners, however, still control their own destiny. If they win their last two matches of the season against Newcastle United and relegation-threatened Everton, Mikel Arteta’s side will qualify for the Champions League for the first time in five years, regardless of Tottenham’s results.
Tottenham would leapfrog Arsenal if they finish tied on points. Spurs currently hold the tiebreaker with a 12-goal advantage in goal difference.
Arsenal will certainly feel the pressure, especially with potential absences in defense. Holding will be suspended for Monday’s match against Newcastle, and Arteta could be without center-back Gabriel, who limped off Thursday with an apparent hamstring injury. Meanwhile, star defender Ben White is still working his way back to full fitness after suffering a thigh injury.
Arsenal’s evening took a turn for the worse when Cedric Soares conceded a penalty in the 22nd minute with a slight nudge on Son. Kane buried the subsequent spot-kick, and the English striker doubled the advantage in the 37th minute with an opportunistic header on the goal line.
Son caused Arsenal problems all evening, drawing five fouls in the first half alone. Holding committed four of them and earned his marching orders when he appeared to elbow Son minutes before halftime.
Son sealed a famous result just after the interval, jumping on a loose ball in the area to score his 21st goal of the season. He now trails Liverpool star Mohamed Salah by one goal in the race for the Premier League’s Golden Boot award.