A 93RD-MINUTE equaliser from forward Rafael van der Vaart ended Tottenham’s three-match losing run but could not prevent them from slipping behind arch-rivals Arsenal into fourth place.
Spurs looked doomed to a fourth consecutive defeat when Stoke striker Cameron Jerome poked the visitors in front 15 minutes from time, but Van der Vaart headed home winger Gareth Bale’s cross to snatch a draw.
Tottenham were cheered by a Chelsea defeat that keeps the fifth-placed Blues, who they visit on Saturday, five points adrift in the Premier League table, and manager Harry Redknapp insisted his side could still regain their advantage over their north London neighbours.
“We can still finish above Arsenal,” said Redknapp. “Arsenal can think it’s all over. It’s not all over. There’s a long way to go yet.
“There’ll be twists and turns. It’s all to play for still. They’re not going to win every game, I don’t think.”
Stoke took the lead against the run of play from a Glenn Whelan free-kick headed goalwards by Robert Huth and helped in by Jerome. Spurs, missing winger Aaron Lennon and striker Emmanuel Adebayor, struggled to test goalkeeper Asmir Begovic, but earned a point in injury time when Van der Vaart beat Huth to Bale’s left-wing delivery.