Tottenham Hotspur v Posh 3rd Rd 2 Jan 2010
Venue: White Hart Lane, Tottenham
Attendance: 35,862 (4,342 Posh)
Score: Tottenham Hotspur 4 v Peterborough Utd 0
Referee: Lee Mason
Niko Kranjcar was the star of this FA Cup tie with two goals as Tottenham comfortably moved into the fourth round of the cup.
The hosts took the lead when Jermain Defoe’s flick allowed Kranjcar to fire past England Under-21 keeper Joe Lewis.
The Croatian midfielder then latched on to Gareth Bale’s pull-back after the break and doubled the advantage.
Bale crossed again for Defoe to make it three before Robbie Keane sealed the win from the spot late on.
The result means Spurs have still never lost to Posh, who will now focus on correcting the poor league form that has seen them slip to the bottom of the Championship.
Spurs boss Harry Redknapp had fielded a strong side at White Hart Lane, quashing any rumours of key players being saved for the club’s quest for a Champions League spot.
And a team of 11 full internationals quickly set about dominating the game, with Posh’s lone striker Craig Mackail-Smith looking very isolated in the opening stages.
Defoe somehow managed to hit the bar from only five yards out, while Tom Huddlestone saw a long-range shot saved by Lewis.
A wonderful move from the hosts then ended with a back-flick from Defoe setting Kranjcar free in the area – only for Lewis to pull off an outstanding save.
But the Croatian was not to be denied for long, breaking free from midfield after being set up by Luka Modric and letting fly with a low shot past Lewis’ despairing dive.
Peterborough never looked likely to fight back into the game and their faint hopes were all but ended when Kranjcar bagged his second after the break.
Keane inspired another fine move that culminated with Bale pulling the ball back from the byline and into the path of the midfielder who fired past Lewis.
Mackail-Smith did see a powerful shot brilliantly saved by Heurelho Gomes but Tottenham responded by rushing upfield to make it 3-0 when another cross from Bale was turned in by Defoe – his 16th goal of the season.
Substitute Danny Rose impressed for the hosts after coming on in the second half and when he was fouled inside the box late on, Keane wrapped things up from the penalty spot.
After the game Posh Manager Mark Cooper said “The second-half, we were too soft and conceded some soft goals. At times they were chasing shadows, but they enjoyed the day. They have some of the best players in Europe, and possibly the world.”
The Posh: Joe Lewis, Tom Williams, Craig Morgan, Ryan Bennett, Scott Griffiths, Charlie Lee, Paul Coutts, Lee Frecklington, Chris Whelpdale, George Boyd and Craig Mackail-Smith.
Unused Subs: James McKeown, Tommy Rowe, Shaun Batt, Toumani Diagouraga, Romone McCrae, Dominic Green and Ben Wright
Tottenham Hotspur: Heurelho Gomes, Alan Hutton, Gareth Bale (Kyle Naughton 79), Sébastien Bassong, Michael Dawson, Tom Huddlestone, Wilson Palacios, Luka Modric, Niko Kranjcar (Danny Rose 73), Robbie Keane and Jermaine Defoe (Roman Pavluchenko 75).
Unused Subs: Ben Alnwick, Vedran Corluks, Peter Crouch and Giovani Dos Santos.
Bookings: Danny Rose (Tottenham), George Boyd and Charlie Lee (the Posh).