Cardiff ended the first half with the ball in the back of the net, but unfortunately for the Bluebirds, the headed shot that bounced off Hugo Lloris was flagged for offside. That was one of the few chances Cardiff had in the opening 45. The one that may keep them up all night -- or, at least, will keep their supporters busy on Twitter for the next few days -- was a shot from Frazier Campbell. Lloris came out to stop the strike, but it wasn't clear whether his hand made contact with the ball inside or outside the area.
For the most part, though, it was the visitors that exerted control in the first half, with Cardiff content to simply sit back and defend. Spurs maintained the vast majority of possession and tried their luck again and again, with eleven shots total in the first half. Roberto Soldado seemed intent on putting his side ahead, but the majority of his shots went straight to David Marshall. Christian Eriksen got in a couple shots from distance, but again, nothing the Cardiff keeper couldn't handle.
The home side showed a spark of life just after play resumed, with Craig Bellamy getting himself into a good position only to see his side blocked. Then Spurs quickly took the reigns once again, with shot after shot flying in. Andros Townsend got on the end of a ball from Kyle Walker, but Marshall was there. Gylfi Sigurdsson saw his shot hit the bar. Marshall stuck out a foot to block a shot from Soldado. Pauliho put his shot too high. And that was all within five minutes -- must be rough to be a Spurs supporter.
In the 80th minute, Cardiff saw a great chance go begging. Peter Odemwingie, on for Campbell, turned his way through two Spurs defenders to slot the ball to Aron Gunnarsson, only for Gunnarsson to send his shot sky-high. Turned out the hosts would really rue that missed opportunity.
To be more specific, the Bluebirds really started kicking themselves in the 93rd minute, when Spurs finally got the ball in the back of the net. Erik Lamela, on for Sigurdsson with 20 minutes left to play, raced down the right before slotting the ball over to where Paulinho was lurking just in front of goal. Marshall must have used up his final bit of energy, because he just couldn't rescue the Brazilian's shot.
Cardiff City: Marshall, Taylor, Turner, Caulker, Theophile-Catherine; Medel, Gunnarsson; Whittingham, Kim, Bellamy; Campbell (Odemwingie 65)
Tottenham Hotspur: Lloris; Walker, Dawson, Vertonghen, Naughton; Dembele, Paulinho; Townsend, Eriksen, Sigurdsson (Lamela 71); Soldado
Goal: Paulinho 90+3