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Tottenham's Son Heung-min scores Premier League career-high 20th goal

In this AFP photo, Son Heung-min of Tottenham Hotspur celebrates his goal against Liverpool during the clubs' Premier League match at Anfield in Liverpool, England, on Sunday. (AFP)
In this AFP photo, Son Heung-min of Tottenham Hotspur celebrates his goal against Liverpool during the clubs' Premier League match at Anfield in Liverpool, England, on Sunday. (AFP)

Tottenham Hotspur's South Korean star Son Heung-min has reached the 20-goal plateau for the first time in a Premier League season.

Son scored the milestone goal in a 1-1 draw against league-leading Liverpool at Anfield in Liverpool, England, on Saturday (local time).

With 20 goals in Premier League play, Son is now two back of Liverpool sensation Mohamed Salah in the Golden Boot race. No Asian player has won a scoring title in the top English competition.

Tottenham and Liverpool will each play three more matches.

In all competitions this season, counting the League Cup and continental tournaments, Son has 21 goals, one shy of his career high set during the 2020-2021 season.

Son's 56th-minute goal, set up by Ryan Sessegnon, gave Tottenham a 1-0 lead. Liverpool tied things up 22 minutes later on Luis Diaz's marker.

The draw moved Tottenham to 62 points and kept their top-four hopes alive. Arsenal currently sit in fourth place with 63 points and have one game in hand on Tottenham. The four best teams from the Premier League each season qualify for the group stage of the UEFA Champions League the following season. The two London rivals will meet Thursday at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

"It was one of the toughest games I've ever played. A point is always good at Anfield," Son said in a post-match interview. "I think the team performance was really good. Liverpool are one of the best teams in the world at the moment, and we had to defend well."

Son broke the scoreless deadlock about a dozen minutes into the second half, when he one-timed Sessegnon's pass with his left foot.

With that goal, Son became just the second player in Premier League history to net 20 or more goals in a season without the benefit of a penalty, joining former Tottenham player Gareth Bale from the 2012-2013 campaign.

In his typical fashion, Son said team performances were far more important than his personal statistics.

"I always try to help my team. If we win the games, I don't have to score," Son said. "This is the only thing on my mind. I want to play in the Champions League next season."

As for facing Arsenal with fourth place on the line, Son said, "It's a big game, but we're playing at home. We'll give it everything we have, and we'll see what happens." (Yonhap)

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