Gareth Bale’s cross was finished by Defoe to give Spurs an early lead at White Hart Lane, but Hugo Lloris’ error just before half-time allowed the visitors to level.
But Defoe put the home side back ahead with a powerful finish and he combined with Bale to wrap up three points in the 77th minute, moving ahead of Teddy Sheringham in Tottenham’s all-time goal scorer list.
“It feels amazing. As a forward you are judged on scoring goals. It’s the best feeling in the world,” Defoe told ITV.
“For me that’s special. He’s [Sheringham] a forward I used to watch as a kid. He was a fantastic player, a great goalscorer, for club and country. So I’m really pleased with that.”
Meanwhile, Tottenham manager André Villas-Boas was pleased by his side’s response to Maribor’s goal in the 40th minute, while the 35-year-old also heaped praise on Defoe for his match-winning performance.
“We were brilliant from the beginning – in possession, in attack, in the way we kept the ball, our mobility and desire to bounce back from 1-1,” said Villas-Boas.
“We controlled it from the beginning and it was really pleasing to see. When you play like this, you deserve good things and today it came to us.
“He [Defoe] makes the most of his opportunities, Gareth was amazing to make two goals with his link-up play. When you have so much quality in your link-up play it’s possible to score.
“Defoe is a clinical striker and it’s good for him to overtake Teddy Sheringham in the scoring charts, it means a lot to him.”
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