Fulham were on a free hit after getting a mere 48 hours to prepare for the game at Spurs.
And did they take advantage? They certainly did!
They ended a pointless 13 London derby games in the top flight to come from behind and draw 1-1.
Ivan Cavaleiro’s great header from Ade Lookman’s cross cancelled out Harry Kane’s terrific nod in the first half.
It was due mainly to a dogged display that saw them refuse to buckle after going behind.
In a very even second half they actually had more chances than the home side, and produced a sixth away point of the season.
Striker still needed
There is still room for improvement.
Scott Parker needs a fast, aggressive forward yesterday.
That mostly ponderous approach to the penalty area by the likes of Cavaleiro was meat and drink to the likes of Spurs for 74 minutes.
No guile, no surprise, and of course, no goals until Cavaleiro, of all people, came up with his first away strike in almost a year.
Contrast with Tottenham, whose wing play and instant delivery into the box caused problems for an hour.
Lookman, who started on the bench, won’t be enough, and with Aleksandar Mitrovic hitting blanks, Whites need more threat.
That three-man central defence augmented when Fulham were defending didn’t work for the Spurs goal.
When you have a wing-back, Kenny Tete in this case, trying to make up his mind whether to tuck in or go wide, it’s always going to be a gamble.
He was a postcode from the fast-moving Sergio Reguilon, who set up a peach of a cross for Kane to plunder.
It’s not the first time this season the Whites have allowed others the green, green grass to roam.
Parker wants to beef up the midfield, and you can see his point, but it does leave him vulnerable in defence – especially to speed.
Areola continues to deliver
Am more than happy to sing Alphonse Areola’s praises – yet again.
The Fulham keeper’s first-half saves from Harry Winks and Son Heung-min in particular, must surely have drawn applause from the other end – or concern.
After all, Hugo Lloris wants to hang on to France’s keeper jersey. Areola must surely be getting attention from Didier Deschamps and his coaching staff.
Carry on like this, Alphonse, and you’ll give France a major selection headache.
Parker continues to admire Ruben Loftus-Cheek.
Some Fulham fans continue to wonder why.
RLC did OK in fairness, although another yard of speed would have made a big difference.
But he still didn’t make another 90 minutes when Josh Onomah came on for a five-minute cameo.
Still, when the alternative is Abou Kamara, fast as a cheetah but not a lot else, you can see why Loftus-Cheek is still a name on the teamsheet.
There was no sign of Tom Cairney or Mario Lemina at Tottenham.
Dangerman Lookman was a substitute, so at the risk of two and two making five, there’s more than a hint as to who’s been suffering in recent times.
That said, no sign of Mitrovic either – and he did play Saturday.
For the eagle-eyed amongst us, he was feeling and looking a bit stiff at the end of the FA Cup win over QPR.
If he didn’t recover from the exertions of 120 minutes, it was probably a mercy to miss this one bearing in mind his wretched form.