After an even first 30 minutes, the left-back got on the end of Emmanuel Adebayor's cross to powerfully head past Asmir Begovic from six yards.
Stoke's task was made even tougher early in the second half when Ryan Shawcross was dismissed for a second yellow card, but despite the disadvantage, Peter Odemwingie and Marko Arnautovic wasted opportunities to earn the home side a share of the spoils.
Below, Sports Mole assesses whether Spurs were deserving of the three points.
On target: 3
On target: 4
Was the result fair?
Stoke will claim that they were worth a point on their home patch, but throughout the game, Spurs looked more threatening in attacking areas and probably deserved to register a maximum return for their efforts. The Potters performed well after the dismissal of Ryan Shawcross but for their overall showing, Spurs will be happy with their display that saw them close the gap on Everton in fifth place.
Stoke City's performance
Apart from their efforts in front of goal, manager Mark Hughes will be relatively happy with how his team played against Tottenham. The Welshman will be disappointed that they suffered just their third home defeat of the campaign, but he will take heart from their determination with 10 men and on another day, they would have earned a draw. The former Queens Park Rangers chief will be optimistic ahead of next season.
Tottenham Hotspur's performance
This was a big result for Tottenham and it was earned by a group of players who looked like they want to play for their manager. That hasn't always been the case since Tim Sherwood took charge at White Hart Lane, but the head coach will take more from this 1-0 win than he would from their 5-1 triumph over Sunderland a couple of weeks ago. If Spurs can play with the same kind of desire that they shown in the Potteries, then it may be enough to convince the club's hierarchy to keep faith with the Englishman.
Sports Mole's man of the match
Younes Kaboul: The defender has endured fitness issues throughout this season but he performed superbly against Stoke to help his team keep a clean sheet. On more than one occasion, Kaboul slid in to make a vital interception, and he even showed enough ambition to burst forward in the closing stages to try to add a second. His 80-yard run came to nothing, but this was a fine performance from the Frenchman.
Marko Arnautovic has impressed recently but he should have earned his side a point with minutes remaining at the Britannia Stadium. The Austrian winger found himself clear on goal but as he looked to curl the ball into the far corner, he scuffed his effort straight at Hugo Lloris to the despair of his manager.
Andre Marriner had a solid game at the Britannia Stadium. He was justified in handing Ryan Shawcross a second yellow card, while he decided to act with common sense when Danny Rose pushed Geoff Cameron. Mark Hughes appeared frustrated with Marriner's display, but the official can be pleased with his afternoon's work.
Stoke City: The Potters host Fulham at the Britannia Stadium next weekend before they travel to The Hawthorns to play West Bromwich Albion on the final day of the season.
Tottenham Hotspur: Spurs make the short trip to Upton Park to play West Ham United next Saturday before they end the campaign with a home match with Aston Villa.