Fulham 0-1 Tottenham: Dele Alli plays leading role in Jose Mourinho win

Three the points are three points in the race to qualify for the Champions League but even José Mourinho cannot deny that this victory was achieved a few kilometers away at Stockley Park.

The Special One will argue that fortune favors the brave. Maybe he’s right.

Fulham, on the other hand, will wonder what they did to deserve the misfortune that befell them Thursday night.

Tottenham tried their luck at Craven Cottage but ended up with an invaluable 1-0 victory thanks to a goal against their own side of Tosin Adarabioyo

Dele Alli (out of the shot) got the last shot on Son Heung-min's cross to deflect the ball into the path of Adarabioyo who scored

Dele Alli (out of the shot) got the last shot on Son Heung-min’s cross to deflect the ball into the path of Adarabioyo who scored

The returning midfielder has been praised by his teammates for the vital role he played in breaking Spurs' stalemate

The returning midfielder has been praised by his teammates for the vital role he played in breaking Spurs’ stalemate

MATCH FACTS AND PLAYER NOTES

Fulham (4-2-3-1): Areola 7; Aina 7, Andersen 7, Adarabioyo 6.5, Robinson 6 (Bryan 75); Roseau 7, Lemina 7; Cavaleiro 6.5 (Mitrovic 71), Lookman 7, Loftus-Cheek 6.5 (Anguissa 64, 6.5); Maja 6.5.

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Reserve: Lookman, Reid

Director: Parker: 6.5

Tottenham (4-2-3-1): Lloris 6.5; Doherty 6.5, Alderwerield 7, Sanchez 7, Davies 6.5; Hojbjerg 7, Ndombele 6.5 (Lamela 75); Bale 6 (Moura 67, 6), Dele 6.5 (Sissoko 67), Fils 7.5; Kane 6.5.

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Reserve: ball

Director: Mourinho: 6.5

Arbitrator: David Coote – 3

Lagging behind thanks to Tosin Adarabioyo’s goal, Fulham believed he had grabbed what would have been a well-deserved equalizer when Josh Maja shot at home.

But in a season of ridiculous decisions, the one Fulham endured could be the most ridiculous of all.

It is no exaggeration to say that Tottenham defender Davinson Sanchez detonated the ball in the arm of Mario Lemina, who was firmly at his side, before the ball ricocheted off Maja.

It doesn’t matter to VAR official Jarred Gillett or field referee David Coote who collaborated to deliver the latest parody that turned this season into a mockery.

“Nobody understands the rule of handball, it has changed so much,” said Fulham boss Scott Parker.

“I understand why the goal is not given but I do not agree with the rule.

“If it doesn’t touch her hand, it touches her thigh.” We’re trying to make the game so sterile, we’re trying to control every moment and that’s where the problem lies.

“I’m sorry to say VAR kills every bit of emotion.”

Fulham certainly didn’t deserve this. Even against a side consisting of Harry Kane, Son Heung-min, Gareth Bale and Dele Alli – who were making their first Premier League start since day one – Parker’s men were brave and inventive.

But all they have been rewarded for is injustice and, more aptly, another blow to their hopes of survival in the Premier League.

“I honestly believe that if we play like this it will be fine,” Parker added.

“I thought we were fantastic, we should have got something out of the game, we did more than enough to win this game.”

The fact that Tottenham were lucky won’t make Mourinho lose sleep. Why should he?

Loan forward Josh Maja believed he brought Fulham back into the game in the second half after finding the back of the net

Loan forward Josh Maja believed he brought Fulham back into the game in the second half after finding the back of the net

Maja's low shot went through the bodies and beat Hugo Lloris but VAR immediately had to check an earlier phase of play

Maja’s low shot went through the bodies and beat Hugo Lloris but VAR immediately had to check an earlier phase of play

It was determined that in preparation for the goal a handball was committed by Fulham midfielder Mario Lemina.

It was determined that in preparation for the goal a handball was committed by Fulham midfielder Mario Lemina.

The scoreboard inside the old stadium revealed the decision and a dejected Fulham had to cut his celebrations short.

The scoreboard inside the old stadium revealed the decision and a dejected Fulham had to cut his celebrations short.

Two straight wins have put Spurs a touching distance from the top four. But it was hardly convincing, far from it.

Fulham’s start was encouraging; not that you would have known it from looking at Parker – arms folded, emotionless in his technical area.

Maybe he knew what was to come when Spurs finally got their engines going.

Son created two excellent chances for Bale and Kane before making the eventual winner in the 19th minute.

Alli missed his attempt to arrive flicked from his colleague’s square pass. Unfortunately for Fulham, Tosin didn’t as the defender applied the finishing touches.

Later in the match Harry Kane (center) had a chance to finish the match but was refused by Alphonse Areola.

Later in the match Harry Kane (center) had a chance to finish the match but was refused by Alphonse Areola

Former Real Madrid and PSG goalkeeper used his experience to expand and prevent Kane from doubling the lead

Former Real Madrid and PSG goalkeeper used his experience to expand and prevent Kane from doubling the lead

Jose Mourinho (second from right) continued to bark commands as his team looked to gain a foothold in the game

Jose Mourinho (second from right) continued to bark commands as his team looked to gain a foothold in the game

Gareth Bale looked sharp after his recent return to form, but couldn't make it among the goals at Craven Cottage

Gareth Bale looked sharp after his recent return to form, but couldn’t make it among the goals at Craven Cottage

Fulham survived a VAR penalty check when Kane fell into the zone before Son wasted another excellent opportunity with a header to the back post he really should have grabbed.

Parker’s team was faltering, but it’s up to them to stick to their overtaking principles.

The Cottagers missed a golden opportunity to level up seconds before the break when Lemina shot over the bar after Maja returned the ball to her. There was no sign of composure.

It was a sign of things to come. Joachim Andersen’s header from Ivan Cavaleiro’s free kick was knocked down by Hugo Lloris before the Frenchman stopped Tosin’s header in the resulting corner.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek scored the goal in the 60th minute just for Sanchez to make a timely interception, before the Chelsea player shot high and wide from the edge of the box.

As tensions boiled over in the final stages, substitute striker Alexsandar Mitrovic began to complain to the referee.

As tensions boiled over in the final stages, substitute striker Alexsandar Mitrovic began to complain to the referee.

Then comes the moment that will cause sleepless nights at Parker in the 64th minute.

Fulham was fuming. Well Named. Tottenham have been very lucky, even Mourinho couldn’t say otherwise.

“I think we were the team with the most chances to score and kill in the game,” said the Portuguese. “Of course we had to defend well and Hugo (Lloris) had to make some important saves.”

Parker tried to cajole his player. But recovering from injustices like this is easier said than done.

Cries of “we are leaving” came from Fulham Bank, but they never recovered.

Fulham continued to besiege the Spurs goal but, in the end, they were running out of ideas – and luck.

Relive how all the action went below with Sportsmail Danny Gallagher, with a joint commentary on Everton’s trip to the Midlands to face West Brom.

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