Tottenham failed to make the most of considerable possession and a number of chances in the first half, while Everton dominated after the break - although they largely failed to threaten Hugo Loris's goal despite the visiting goalkeeper playing on after a head knock which had left him unconscious, his manager said. Both sides also thought they had strong penalty claims after Jan Vertonghen and Seamus Coleman tangled on separate occasions in each half. Home goalkeeper Tim Howard and opposite number Lloris both had busy afternoons but held firm. The opposing managers fielded familiar line-ups - Tottenham reverted to the starting XI which beat Hull City last weekend, meaning Erik Lamela was back on the bench, while Everton replaced Ross Barkley with Leon Osman in their only alteration from their last league game.
"It was tight, a good game. We had good moments and a great first half with pressing and good attacking combinations and we should have gone ahead," said Andre Villas-Boas, the Tottenham manager. "The second half evened itself out and in the last 30 minutes they had a go at us. We could have gone second but, considering Everton's aspirations, it was important to get a point."
The Londoners, backed by a noisy visiting support, had their first sight of goal in the opening minutes as Sandro forced a save from Howard, and continued to threaten with efforts from Andros Townsend, Roberto Soldado and Kyle Walker before Vertonghen went down in the area under pressure from Coleman.
Roberto Martinez, the Everton manager, said: "Spurs are a very good side and work hard when they lose the ball, and that upset our rhythm. But we found that rhythm in the second half and it became an open game with two teams who wanted to win and not settle for a point."
Although Everton rallied after half-time, apart from a cross/shot from former Tottenham man Steven Pienaar that went narrowly wide of the far post and a shot from Gerard Deulofeu saved late on they rarely got close to breaching Lloris's goal.
The France goalkeeper stayed on the pitch until the end despite taking an accidental knee to the head from Everton striker Romelu Lukaku in the latter stages. The injury brought a delay and the addition of nine minutes of stoppage time. "Hugo still doesn't remember the incident," said Villas-Boas. "He lost consciousness but he seemed assertive and determined to continue, and showed great character and personality. We decided to keep him on based on that."