Tottenham join Liverpool and Newcastle in the next round. They wobbled briefly in this match to allow Pan to equalise but then, following tweaks by AVB, re-asserted their superiority and ran out deserved victors.
Spurs change: Lennon off, Livermore on. "That's not a bad call from the Girl Named Tom," reckons Sean Moore. "Compare and contrast with Manchester United this season, and what does that say about Sir Alex's ability to adapt and change at half time." That he has better options on the bench? Also, should point out that Spurs were drawing when AVB introduced Dembélé and now they're two goals in front.
Walker scorches his way into the box and then shows enough composure to toy with the defenders as he debates what to do with the ball. Eventually he tries to tee up Defoe, but a defender read his intention and foiled his cunning plan.
GOAL! Spurs 3-1 Pana (Defoe 83')
Sumptuous finish from Defoe! After cutting in-field run by Lennon, followed by a clever reverse pass, Defoe dinks the ball over the advancing keeper with just enough pace for it to roll over the line before the retreating defender could clear: the perfect goal, almost taunting the opponent as he goes. Romario was an expert at that and he would have been proud of that finish. The game is over now too.
"The test of a manager is how well he is able to adapt and change at half-time to what's happening on the pitch;" lectures a man called Tom. Or possibly a woman called Tom, I shouldn't jump to conclusions based on convention. Or possibly, come to think of it, a woman called Sally pretending to be a man called Tom. It really is hard to know. "Spurs' performances this season have been consistently poorer in the second half, and this one seems no exception. That's down to AVB."
Dempsey is treated to a lusty ovation as he makes way, to be replaced by Sigurdsson.
What a difference a goal makes. Spurs are playing with a swagger again and Pana have crumpled. "I would not suggest AVB is glad that he was fired from Chelsea before last season ended, but do you think AVB feels different about Chelsea now that they've canned RDM?" whitters Cason Dwyer. "I wonder if he's glad he's no longer in that environment or he's just ruing his bad luck that Spurs aren't facing Chelsea this Saturday, rather than when Chelsea were top of the table?" Reckon he'll settle for facing them in the Europa League and dumping them out of Europe, a revenge for himself and for Chelsea taking Spurs' Champions League place and then mucking up their campaign.
GOAL! Spurs 2-1 Pan (Dempsey 76')
The American deserves that after one of his best performances for Tottenham! Walker whipped in a wonderful freekick from the right and Dempsey, having eluded his marker, powered his header past the keeper ... it crashed against the bar and then ricocheted off the hapless keeper's back and into the net. Technically that's probably an own goal but morally, Dempsey is on the scoresheet.
Sandro luckily wins a freekick after being outsprinted and outmuscled by Zeca as he tried to lash down the right. Before the freekick can be taken, AVB makes a change, replacing Carroll with Dembélé, who should bring more cohesion and ingenuity to the hosts.
It's all Pana now they're swarming all over Spurs. Another wonderful delivery from the left by Spyropoulous threatens danger ... until Vertonghen intervenes with a crucial header.
What an escape by Spurs! More wonky defending gifted the Greeks a great chance to equalise, as Naughton scuffed an attempted clearance and Toche tired to slash the ball into the net from seven yards. Friedel didn't have time to move and was grateful to see the ball skim just wide.
Spyropoulous, inspired in turn by Naughton, knocks over Lennon and cops an inevitable booking. Walker launches the 45-yard freekick into the box, and the keeper takes it comfortably.
Naughton, inspired by England's victory over the All Blacks, performs a rugby tackle on Sissoko and cops an inevitable booking.
Lennon and Adebayor combined well on the right before the winger slid it into the Dempsey. A chance seemed to be opening for Tottenham as Defoe peeled off his marker at the edge of the box ... but Dempsey's pass went awry and the opportunity dies.
Spurs are struggling to keep hold of the ball.
Suddenly it's looking awkward for Spurs, who are no longer at ease. Pana are getting amongst them, chasing everything down and preventing Spurs from putting any kind of move together. The home side are definitely on the back foot now.
GOAL! Spurs 1-1 Pana (Zeca 53')
Way to respond to my previous comment! That's an excellent equaliser from the visitors, aided by negligent defending by Walker, who allowed Zeca to dart in front of him to meet a cross from the left and power a header into the net from eight yards. Cue joyous mayhem amid the 1,600 Pana fans behind the goal.
Nearly an hour gone and still no clue as to why Pana bothered turning up. Meanwhile in Slovenia, Maribor are losing 4-0 to Lazio, which suggests there's no chance of Spurs topping this group.
Nearly 2-0! Dempsey slipped another cute ball through to Defoe, who cracked a low shot from 15 yards past the keeper ... and off the inside of the post and back out!
Spurs start the second half and quickly get another attack going, Lennon jinking in from the right and clipping over a dainty cross that caused plenty of bother before Pana scrambled it away.
Spurs have a deserved lead and Pana do not look capable of doing anything about. But Spurs have not put together a lot of solid 90-minute performances this season so there is still a chance this game could become interesting ...
Fine one-two between Carroll and Adebayor, whose shot is deflected behind for a corner. Walker takes it, Vertonghen meets with a powerful header and it's deflected wide for another corner. Walker delivers again but this time the keeper clasps it.
Dempsey, involved in everything, concedes a freekick by treading on Seitaridis' toes. That gives the Greeks a chance to build an attack, which they fail to do.
Carroll's corner half-cleared at the near post. It falls to the ubiquitous Dempsey, who, in his zeal to get it under control, takes it down with his arm.
Spurs are totally dominant. Lennon skitters down the right and sends in a cross. Seitaridis prevents Dempsey from getting his head to it but the ball bounces down to Defoe, who, from eight yards, whacks it way over the bar! "For Defoe, that's a miss," analyses ITV's Andy Townsend. It would also have been a miss for Floella Benjamin, Boutrous Boutrous Ghali and Phil Collins, to name but a few.
"Do you get the feeling that Dempsey's playing a bit for his life in this match?" squawks Carl Atiya-Swanson. "Aside from heroics against Man U, he hasn't really found form yet this season. And, if he finds his top through ball, goal-poaching form, how much better does that make Spurs?" Not sure about playing for his life - I don't think AVB is ruthless enough to have him bumped off if his performances don't improve - but obviously the American is eager to get back to his best. He's a class player so it's only a matter of time and, of course, Spurs would be better for it, especially in matches where they play with only one up front. Gyflii Sigurdsson, on the other hand, looks utterly lost at White Hart Lane. So far.
Sow tries his luck from 25 yards. His luck is out.
Clever play from Dempsey, before a pass to Adebayor, who lays it wide to Lennon, who puts into the path of Sandro .... who booms into Valentino's night club.
If Adebayor can just refrain from trying to tackle anyone, Spurs should now canter into the next round. ""In reply to David Wall [19 mins], it's a mixed bag," reckons Dan Rattigan. "I'm a big fan of what Villas Boas is doing and he's getting a better reception from the fans, while the players seem to love him. Bit ropey at first, boos after West Brom and Norwich (although not necessarily at Andre), but just don't listen to the TalkSport brigade. He does have a chant - AVB's Y*d army - which was loud enough at Fulham at the weekend. And I'm certainly not pinning for Redknapp after the second half of last season and his continual self-publicity. We're pretty divided on that as well. Generally though - he's gone, let's move on."
GOAL! Spurs 1-0 Pana (Adebayor 27')
The Togolese claims his second goal of the season, coolly sliding the ball into the net after an immaculate through-ball from Dempsey.
Dempsey, playing deeper than usual since there are two strikers in front of him, collects the ball from Carroll and then gets a brainwave: why not have a pop from 35 yards?! Because the chances of you finding the net are more remote than Easter Island, as evidenced by the effort that has just wafted way into the stands.
As Greeks converge near the back post in anticipation of a freekick delivery, Seitaridis takes everyone by surprise by pinging it into to Toche, who had peeled away from everyone to meet it at the near post. His first-time shot is straight at Friedel.
More nippy play by Dempsey, but after he undoes that with a loose ball that fails to reach Defoe. "What is the general feeling among Spurs fans towards the manager now, are they starting to warm to him or do very many still pine for Redknapp?" wonders David Wall. "I thought it was especially interesting in the interview with Defoe from the paper at the weekend that he was especially effusive about Villas-Boas's personal attention and man-management. That was what he was perhaps most criticised for from his time at Chelsea yet it sounded as though the things he did made Defoe feel particularly valued and appreciated. I wonder how much a manager's reputation depends on what he actually does and how much depends on what he talks in public about what he does." Picking him regularly is the best piece of man-management, and AVB didn't have much choice in that given Spurs' dearth of strikers. But I do think AVB has done a good job so far and there are clear signs that his team are getting the hang of the more possession-based method. As for his personality, he's always struck me as a good guy even if he does occasionally spout gobbeldygook. But sure, don't we all?
Walker smashes the freekick straight into the wall.
Without the unhingeing runs of Bale, Spurs are finding it difficult to create openings. But Dempsey has been lively and is probing with purpose, so much so that Habib decided to bump to the ground just outside the box, conceding a freekick in a dangerous position.
For reasons that are not clear, Sandro is being booed by the visiting fans. I like to think it's random japery. Meanwhile, Pana's early ambition has receded and they are now defending in great numbers in a bid to stifle Spurs.
It's all a bit harum-scarum at the moment; lots of vitality but no fluency.
Decent work by Dempsey, who wriggles into the box and then picks out Adebayor, who dawdles. Spurs recycle and Walker eventually wins a corner on the far side.
Things have quietened down on the pitch, but not in the stands. "Champions of Europe, you're not any more," crow the Tottenham fans. Who knew they would take such glee from the decline of Steaua Bucharest?
The Pana fans are making a mighty din and their team have started zestily, seemingly determined to seize the win that would put them through.
ITV are choosing to show this from a very curious angle, as it their camera is a compact spy device tucked in the lapel of someone a couple of rows from the front.
The teams are in:
Tottenham: Friedel, Walker, Caulker, Vertonghen, Naughton,
Lennon, Sandro, Carroll, Dempsey, Defoe, Adebayor.
Subs: Cudicini, Huddlestone, Dembele, Sigurdsson, Livermore, Townsend, Stewart.
Panathinaikos: Karnezis, Seitaridis, Triantafyllopoulos,
Vyntra, Spyropoulos, Vitolo, Sow, Sissoko, Zeca, Mavrias, Toche.
Subs: Kapino, Christodoulopoulos, Fornaroli, Marinos,
Petropoulos, Chouchoumis, Velazquez.
Referee: Pawel Gil (Poland)
Paul will be here shortly. Well, once he's finished covering the Udinese-Liverpool game. In the meantime, here's an excerpt from James Riach's match preview:
André Villas-Boas is confident Tottenham can secure the one point required to qualify for the knockout stages of the Europa League but admits Gareth Bale will be missed against Panathinaikos on Thursday night.
Spurs lead the Greek side by two points in Group J, meaning a draw will be enough for them to advance as runners-up, although a victory at White Hart Lane could see them finish top if Lazio lose against NK Maribor.
Bale sustained a hamstring injury during the 3-0 victory over Fulham last weekend and is expected to be out for two weeks. Villas-Boas will rest the goalkeeper Hugo Lloris and replace him with Brad Friedel.
"At the moment this is a decisive game. We have to win or we have to draw to go through," said the Tottenham manager. "Panathinaikos have put themselves in a great position, they've come back from the death to leave us in a game where the winner is the team that goes through.
"We've done excellently in this group phase. We have taken it very seriously. We are very proud in how we approach the competition and we want to go through."
On Bale's absence he said: "Gareth will be missed. I have excellent players. For example, [Clint] Dempsey did well on the left after Gareth got injured. He is a different type of player. He is not an out-and-out winger but it's a position he has played before. He did extremely well."