Spurs head into the weekend with their third win in four Europa League games after a 4-0 blitz against Bulgarian League table-toppers, Ludogorets.
Fifteen minutes into the game, Dele Alli’s deflected through ball found Carlos Vinicius, who sent goalkeeper Palmen Lliev the wrong way with a cool finish into the bottom right corner.
Just under 20 minutes later, Tanguy Ndombele managed to dance past six players before unleashing a shot which rebounded to Alli, who unselfishly pulled it back for Vinicius to score his second of the game.
Mourinho’s side walked into half time with 67% possession, evidently taking comfortable control of the game.
A dull start to the second half proceeded and ten minutes after being booked, French midfielder Ndombele gave way to Pierre-Emile Højbjerg who sat deep in midfield for the remaining thirty minutes.
Three minutes after the Dane’s entry, a spontaneous fifty-six yard pass attempt from Harry Winks somehow transformed into a goal, knocking off of the crossbar and landing in the back of the net. When asked about whether it was intentional, he joked: “No, no I didn’t mean it, I saw Gaz [Gareth Bale] making that run, I just over hit it but I’ll take it because it’s a goal at the end of the day“
With seventeen minutes to go, Alli continued his impressive performance with a cross to Vinicius, who took a touch and rolled it to his fellow Brazilian, Lucas Moura, who finished swiftly into the far corner.
The on-loan striker seems to have settled in nicely, and has now provided two goals and three assists in four matches for Tottenham. A statistic which will reassure Spurs fans knowing they might just finally have a competent back-up striker for Harry Kane.
However, last year’s top scorer in the Portugese League was not the only player in Mourinho’s side who has made a statement for themself. Alli recorded 80 touches and 2 major chances created over the 90 minutes, a glimpse of hope for the potential re-ignition of his career, after having gone through a tough spell at Tottenham.
Japhet Tanganga returned to Mourinho’s starting XI after almost being sidelined for almost two months with thigh problems. The young centre-half played his part well, limiting the visitors to zero shots, alongside Davinson Sanchez.
The final third of the match was a period of youthful experiment for Mourinho, where Jack Clarke entered with 68 minutes gone and Harvey White, Alfie Whiteman and Dane Scarlett following the winger twelve minutes later.
Scarlett is the youngest player to appear for Tottenham in a competitive match, at 16 years and 242 days old. The Englishman even had a great chance to score, but the ball just ran away from him at the last moment. Regardless, it is a huge statement of his ability & the club’s intent by having such a young player come on and make an impact.
Spurs have now won 12 of their 17 games this season and up next, head to Stamford Bridge to face Chelsea in a classic London derby.
Written by Benzi Melcer
Edited by Joey Pickthall