Tottenham maintained their unbeaten start to the Premier League season with a comfortable victory against winless Sunderland at White Hart Lane.
Spurs dominated but did not make the breakthrough until Harry Kane scored with their 22nd attempt on goal.
Papy Djilobodji failed to clear a Dele Alli header allowing Kane to poke home from point-blank range on 59 minutes.
Late on, Kane suffered a nasty ankle injury and Sunderland’s Adnan Januzaj was sent off for a second booking.
A fourth defeat in five games means Sunderland are yet to win in the league under David Moyes.
The scoreline could have been worse for them but for outstanding goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, 22, who made a string of saves to keep his side in the game.
England striker Kane, who scored his second goal of the season, limped off the field after injuring his ankle with three minutes remaining and eventually left on a stretcher.
Aside from losing Kane, there was further injury worry for Spurs as England’s Eric Dier and Belgium’s Mousa Dembele were both substituted in the second half with what appeared to be hamstring injuries.
Moussa Sissoko was given his first start for Spurs since his £30m move on transfer deadline day and he joined Dembele and Victor Wanyama in a powerful midfield as Erik Lamela and Christian Eriksen dropped to the bench.
Tottenham completely dominated the game with 31 shots and 73.8% possession.
In the first half alone, they mustered 19 efforts with Kane, Son Heung-min and Toby Alderweireld going close.
Impressive South Korea winger Son was Spurs’ best attacking force with five key passes and seven shots, though only two were on target.
The win was the perfect response after the disappointing midweek Champions League defeat by Monaco at Wembley and moves Spurs up to third in the table.
Blunt Black Cats
In contrast to the home side’s dominance, Sunderland had just three shots in the first half.
The first came after 22 minutes as Jermain Defoe latched onto a long ball from Pickford but was unable to get his shot past Hugo Lloris.
Steven Pienaar had the best chance of the half just before the break as he met Januzaj’s cross but his shot from six yards was cleared off the line by Kyle Walker.
The worry for the Black Cats is that striker Defoe managed just 13 touches in the match and only one of those came in Spurs’ area.
Pickford had the most touches and his eight saves were vital in keeping the score respectable.
Moyes will have to do without Januzaj for the next match as the on-loan Manchester United winger was dismissed for a second booking in the space of 10 minutes. Having been cautioned for dissent, he saw red after fouling Ben Davies.
Man of the match – Son Heung-min (Tottenham)
What they said
Sunderland manager David Moyes: “Steven Pienaar had a great chance and we probably need to score any chance we get.
“Jordan Pickford is going to be a very good keeper. He has a lot of work to do at the moment, more than I’d like him to get. He will get better, he has a real good future ahead of him.
“We had a chance to clear the ball for the goal. That was a mistake and, of all the chances Tottenham got, that was a soft one and we gifted them that.
“It is a big job. I know how much is going to get better. All we can do is keep getting on the training field and making it better and I enjoy doing that.”
Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino: “Sometimes it’s difficult. In the end it was fair.
“We fought a lot and tried to score. I’m happy with the three points and it takes away the feeling from losing against Monaco.
“I want to create chances and play well – sometimes you need a lot of chances to score. Today we always tried to go forward. We feel disappointed because we created a lot of chances in the first half.”
Stats you need to know
- The Black Cats are without a clean sheet at White Hart Lane in any of their last 21 league visits there since a goalless draw in September 1980.
- Kane has scored in three of his four home Premier League appearances against Sunderland.
- The England striker has also scored in back-to-back Premier League games after having gone five games without a goal.
- Sunderland have not won any of their last 24 Premier League matches contested in either August or September (drawn nine, lost 15).
- Spurs are unbeaten in their opening five Premier League games for only the second time (also 2004-05).
- This is the fourth consecutive season that Sunderland have failed to win any of their opening five Premier League games.
- Spurs had 19 shots in the first half, the most of any Premier League side since Liverpool’s 20 against Leicester in December 2015.
Tottenham host League One side Gillingham in the EFL Cup on Wednesday before travelling to Middlesbrough in the Premier League on Saturday.
Sunderland are at Championship side QPR in the EFL Cup on Wednesday before entertaining Crystal Palace in the Premier League on Saturday.
Match ends, Tottenham Hotspur 1, Sunderland 0.
Second Half ends, Tottenham Hotspur 1, Sunderland 0.
Attempt saved. Son Heung-Min (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Erik Lamela.
Corner, Tottenham Hotspur. Conceded by Lamine Koné.
Attempt missed. Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from more than 35 yards misses to the left.
Substitution, Sunderland. Paddy McNair replaces Jason Denayer.
Attempt missed. Vincent Janssen (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Erik Lamela.
Attempt blocked. Jermain Defoe (Sunderland) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.
Attempt missed. Erik Lamela (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from outside the box is too high from a direct free kick.
Papy Djilobodji (Sunderland) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Vincent Janssen (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Papy Djilobodji (Sunderland).
Second yellow card to Adnan Januzaj (Sunderland) for a bad foul.
Ben Davies (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Foul by Adnan Januzaj (Sunderland).
Attempt missed. Duncan Watmore (Sunderland) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Javier Manquillo with a cross.
Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Vincent Janssen replaces Harry Kane because of an injury.
Delay over. They are ready to continue.
Delay in match Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) because of an injury.
Attempt missed. Erik Lamela (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Dele Alli.
Ben Davies (Tottenham Hotspur) is shown the yellow card.
Foul by Moussa Sissoko (Tottenham Hotspur).
Adnan Januzaj (Sunderland) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Corner, Tottenham Hotspur. Conceded by Papy Djilobodji.
Attempt blocked. Erik Lamela (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Harry Kane.
Adnan Januzaj (Sunderland) is shown the yellow card.
Corner, Tottenham Hotspur. Conceded by Duncan Watmore.
Substitution, Sunderland. Wahbi Khazri replaces Jan Kirchhoff.
Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Didier Ndong (Sunderland).
Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Ben Davies replaces Eric Dier because of an injury.
Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Erik Lamela replaces Mousa Dembélé because of an injury.
Delay over. They are ready to continue.
Delay in match Mousa Dembélé (Tottenham Hotspur) because of an injury.
Attempt missed. Eric Dier (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left following a corner.
Corner, Tottenham Hotspur. Conceded by Jordan Pickford.
Attempt saved. Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Mousa Dembélé.
Attempt missed. Moussa Sissoko (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Harry Kane.
Attempt missed. Lamine Koné (Sunderland) header from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Adnan Januzaj with a cross following a corner.
Corner, Sunderland. Conceded by Kyle Walker.