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Woodgate seals it for Tottenham

JONATHAN Woodgate headed in an 86th-minute winner on Monday to help Tottenham ease its Premier League relegation fears with a 2-1 victory at Hull.

Aaron Lennon gave Tottenham the lead in the 17th minute with his second goal of the season, but Hull equalized when defender Michael Turner scored in the 27th.

Woodgate's powerful header from a short corner moved Tottenham up two places to 14th, one behind Hull and five points clear of the relegation zone.

"It's a massive result and puts us in a much better position and keeps Hull in a relegation battle," Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp said.

In a hectic seven days, Tottenham now faces Shakhtar Donetsk in the UEFA Cup on Thursday and then Manchester United in the League Cup final at Wembley on Sunday.

"It gives us confidence," Redknapp said of the win over Hull. "We've got a game on Thursday night. It showed why I rested players. People should understand that is why I do my job and that is why they do their job. We've got to play on Monday and Thursday and we've got a cup final on Sunday. It's ludicrous. We are trying to figure out a team for Thursday. It's a tough week but it's a great start."

Poor Hull defending in front of its own fans at the KC Stadium led to the first Spurs goal. A short corner found Lennon just outside the area and, when the Hull defenders were slow to close him down, the winger scored with a 20-meter shot.

Hull equalized 10 minutes later when Tottenham goalkeeper Carlo Cudicini failed to get to Andy Dawson's corner and the ball dropped to Turner, who prodded home his fifth goal of the season.

Spurs almost regained the lead midway through the second half but Vedran Corluka's header clipped the top of the crossbar. Hull defender Kamil Zayatte then hit the post with a close range header before Woodgate scored.

The three points were Tottenham's first away from home since a 2-0 win at West Ham on December 8. Hull, in its first ever season in the top division, is sliding dangerously close to relegation trouble after a promising start to the season.


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