Tottenham recorded their second consecutive win at Old Trafford as victory over Manchester United lifted them to sixth in the Premier League.

United began briskly but Emmanuel Adebayor guided in a header from Christian Eriksen's cross for Spurs.

Eriksen doubled the lead with a close-range header after another Spurs break but Danny Welbeck beat Hugo Lloris to set up a frantic finish.

Javier Hernandez had a late flick saved for the hosts as Spurs held on.

It was a hugely impressive result for new Tottenham head coach Tim Sherwood, who is unbeaten in his four Premier League games in charge.

Man Utd 1-2 Tottenham: David Moyes calls penalty decision unbelievable

Before last year's 3-2 win at Old Trafford Spurs had gone over 23 years without beating Manchester United on their home turf.

But the Londoners' second victory in a row at the Theatre of Dreams shows that although they are unlikely to win the title themselves, they can still have a sizeable effect on the outcome.

Spurs were thumped 6-0 by Manchester City in November on their last visit to Manchester, but Wednesday's result is further evidence that Sherwood could be the right man to lead Tottenham forward despite the new boss, who is in his first managerial role, admitting he represented "a gamble".

Adebayor, who was sidelined by former manager Andre Villas-Boas, has been given a new lease of life under ex-Spurs midfielder Sherwood and the forward played a key role in the win.

Like London buses

Tottenham went 26 games without beating Manchester United at Old Trafford but have now won twice in succession there.

David Moyes's United side had Wayne Rooney back from injury and had chances to equalise late on, as well as several penalty appeals, but the defeat ended a six-game winning run.

Many observers have claimed that United's recent form has shown they are back on track under Moyes after a stuttering start to the season, but this loss keeps them 11 points behind leaders Arsenal and with six defeats in 20 matches, their title chances are hanging by a thread.

The hosts had plenty of energy at each end of the match yet, after Lloris saved Chris Smalling's early shot, it was Spurs who created the better openings.

Man Utd 1-2 Tottenham: Tim Sherwood says Spurs exploited weaknesses

Aaron Lennon was denied by David De Gea after a clever Roberto Soldado pass and smart work from Adebayor, and the Togo forward also held the ball up well to create another opportunity later in the first half, but Soldado skewed his shot wide at the back post from Lennon's cross.

In between those two chances Adebayor was more composed in front of goal. A flowing Spurs move allowed Eriksen to cross from the left after 34 minutes and Adebayor nodded back across De Gea and into the bottom corner.

United failed to inspire the crowd early in the second period but the home supporters did make the most of the first of two penalty appeals when Welbeck appeared to be tripped by Vlad Chiriches.

And the United fans slumped further into their seats when Eriksen headed in from close range to double Spurs' lead after Lennon's shot was deflected by Nemanja Vidic's block.

The two-goal advantage only lasted a minute though, as Welbeck flicked the ball past Loris from Adnan Januzaj's clever through ball.

That transformed the atmosphere, with the crowd roundly booing Adebayor for going down injured before the restart - he was taken off on a stretcher with the nature of his problem unclear.

United came back from two goals down to beat Hull on Boxing Day and they searched for an equaliser as Januzaj curled wide and then crossed low for substitute Hernandez, whose flick was saved by Lloris.

Frustration grew as Januzaj was booked for diving by referee Howard Webb after a challenge by Danny Rose.

Rooney and Vidic then came close to grabbing an equaliser and the United players also demanded a penalty when Lloris appeared to collide with substitute Ashley Young in the area, but their evening ended in disappointment.

For a gallery of images from Wednesday's Premier League games please go to the BBC Sport Facebook page 

Lineup, Bookings (3) & Substitutions (6)

Manchester United

  • 01 de Gea
  • 12 Smalling (Kagawa - 61' )
  • 03 Evra
  • 23 Cleverley (Young - 84' )
  • 15 Vidic
  • 06 Evans
  • 25 A Valencia
  • 16 Carrick (Hernández - 61' )
  • 19 Welbeck
  • 10 Rooney Booked
  • 44 Januzaj Booked

Substitutes

  • 05 Ferdinand
  • 13 Lindegaard
  • 14 Hernández
  • 18 Young
  • 24 Fletcher
  • 26 Kagawa
  • 28 Büttner

Tottenham Hotspur

  • 25 Lloris
  • 02 Walker
  • 03 Rose
  • 15 Capoue (Bentaleb - 64' )
  • 20 Dawson
  • 06 Chiriches
  • 07 Lennon
  • 19 Dembélé Booked
  • 09 Soldado (Kane - 75' )
  • 10 Adebayor (Chadli - 70' )
  • 23 Eriksen

Substitutes

  • 11 Lamela
  • 21 Chadli
  • 24 Friedel
  • 35 Fryers
  • 37 Kane
  • 42 Bentaleb
  • 43 Fredericks
Ref: Howard Webb
Att: 75,265

Match Stats

Shots

17 9

On target

6 4

Corners

13 2

Fouls

7 7

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Manchester United 1, Tottenham Hotspur 2.

90:00 +5:08 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Manchester United 1, Tottenham Hotspur 2.

90:00 +2:59

Offside, Tottenham Hotspur. Mousa Dembélé tries a through ball, but Harry Kane is caught offside.

90:00 +1:55

Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United) wins a free kick on the right wing.

90:00 +1:55

Foul by Danny Rose (Tottenham Hotspur).

90:00 +1:20

Patrice Evra (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

90:00 +1:20

Foul by Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur).

90:00 +0:34

Attempt missed. Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United) header from the centre of the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Wayne Rooney with a cross.

90:00 +0:10

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Aaron Lennon.

90:00 +0:07

Attempt missed. Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Jonny Evans with a headed pass following a corner.

89:54

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Hugo Lloris.

89:51

Attempt saved. Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United) header from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Wayne Rooney with a cross.

89:32

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Hugo Lloris.

89:30

Attempt saved. Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Adnan Januzaj.

88:10 Booking

Booking Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United) is shown the yellow card.

87:58

Offside, Manchester United. Jonny Evans tries a through ball, but Patrice Evra is caught offside.

84:45

Foul by Patrice Evra (Manchester United).

84:45

Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

83:41 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Manchester United. Ashley Young replaces Tom Cleverley.

82:52

Attempt saved. Aaron Lennon (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Harry Kane.

81:15

Attempt blocked. Mousa Dembélé (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Aaron Lennon.

79:48 Booking

Booking Mousa Dembélé (Tottenham Hotspur) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

79:38

Tom Cleverley (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

79:38

Foul by Mousa Dembélé (Tottenham Hotspur).

78:51

Patrice Evra (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

78:51

Foul by Kyle Walker (Tottenham Hotspur).

76:45

Attempt saved. Javier Hernández (Manchester United) right footed shot from the right side of the six yard box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Adnan Januzaj.

75:47

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Vlad Chiriches.

74:41 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Harry Kane replaces Roberto Soldado.

73:56

Foul by Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United).

73:56

Danny Rose (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

71:44

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Vlad Chiriches.

70:38

Attempt missed. Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Javier Hernández.

69:51

Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United) wins a free kick on the right wing.

69:51

Foul by Danny Rose (Tottenham Hotspur).

69:21 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Nacer Chadli replaces Emmanuel Adebayor because of an injury.

69:17

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

67:40

Delay in match Emmanuel Adebayor (Tottenham Hotspur) because of an injury.

66:47 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Manchester United 1, Tottenham Hotspur 2. Danny Welbeck (Manchester United) right footed shot from the right side of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Adnan Januzaj with a through ball.

65:25 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Manchester United 0, Tottenham Hotspur 2. Christian Eriksen (Tottenham Hotspur) header from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner.

63:58 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Tottenham Hotspur. Nabil Bentaleb replaces Etienne Capoue.

60:35 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Manchester United. Javier Hernández replaces Michael Carrick.

60:25 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Manchester United. Shinji Kagawa replaces Chris Smalling.

49:49

Attempt saved. Danny Welbeck (Manchester United) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Michael Carrick.

48:37

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Danny Rose.

45:00

Second Half begins Manchester United 0, Tottenham Hotspur 1.

45:00 +2:05 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Manchester United 0, Tottenham Hotspur 1.

44:42

Corner, Tottenham Hotspur. Conceded by Wayne Rooney.

44:09

Corner, Tottenham Hotspur. Conceded by Chris Smalling.

43:26

Attempt missed. Danny Welbeck (Manchester United) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Luis Antonio Valencia with a cross.

42:37

Hand ball by Chris Smalling (Manchester United).

40:41 Booking

Booking Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

40:38

Foul by Wayne Rooney (Manchester United).

40:38

Mousa Dembélé (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

40:19

Attempt blocked. Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

39:59

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Emmanuel Adebayor.

39:18

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Danny Rose.

38:38

Attempt missed. Roberto Soldado (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from very close range is close, but misses the top left corner. Assisted by Aaron Lennon with a cross.

37:51

Foul by Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United).

37:51

Michael Dawson (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

35:56

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Aaron Lennon.

35:13

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Danny Rose.

33:47 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Manchester United 0, Tottenham Hotspur 1. Emmanuel Adebayor (Tottenham Hotspur) header from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Christian Eriksen with a cross.

31:16

Attempt missed. Emmanuel Adebayor (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.

25:17

Hand ball by Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United).

23:40

Attempt blocked. Roberto Soldado (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from a difficult angle and long range on the right is blocked.

21:59

Offside, Tottenham Hotspur. Hugo Lloris tries a through ball, but Emmanuel Adebayor is caught offside.

20:50

Attempt missed. Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Adnan Januzaj with a cross following a corner.

20:08

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Michael Dawson.

18:09

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Michael Dawson.

16:36

Attempt blocked. Luis Antonio Valencia (Manchester United) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked.

15:14

Attempt missed. Danny Rose (Tottenham Hotspur) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Mousa Dembélé.

13:24

Attempt saved. Aaron Lennon (Tottenham Hotspur) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Roberto Soldado with a through ball.

13:06

Attempt blocked. Danny Welbeck (Manchester United) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Chris Smalling with a cross.

11:58

Attempt blocked. Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Michael Carrick.

9:01

Attempt missed. Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) right footed shot from outside the box is too high from a direct free kick.

8:02

Jonny Evans (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

8:02

Foul by Etienne Capoue (Tottenham Hotspur).

6:54

Hand ball by Roberto Soldado (Tottenham Hotspur).

6:37

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

6:04

Delay in match Michael Dawson (Tottenham Hotspur) because of an injury.

5:22

Offside, Manchester United. Adnan Januzaj tries a through ball, but Chris Smalling is caught offside.

4:51

Corner, Manchester United. Conceded by Hugo Lloris.

4:50

Attempt saved. Chris Smalling (Manchester United) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Luis Antonio Valencia.

2:06

Foul by Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United).

2:06

Emmanuel Adebayor (Tottenham Hotspur) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

Live data and text provided by our data suppliers