Following defeat to Antwerp in their last Europa League match, there were no chances taken by Jose Mourinho in Bulgaria on bonfire night. It was job done as he saw Tottenham Hotspur cruise past Ludogorets.
No Chances Taken as Tottenham Hotspur Cruise Past Ludogorets
First Choice Players Come Back in
Dele Alli, Davinson Sanchez and Carlos Vinicius all started against Antwerp and, the latter aside, all failed to perform. Harry Kane, Gareth Bale, Lucas Moura and Giovani Lo Celso all started in a very strong Spurs side. In a group where Spurs are expected to progress with relative ease, Jose Mourinho needed to ensure that no more slips were allowed.
Gareth Bale Improving
With another 65 minutes under his belt, Gareth Bale showed he is finding his feet. He may not be the marauding player that left Tottenham seven years ago, but he still has so much to offer this squad. Bale shifted from wing to wing and his pass to Harry Kane for Lucas Moura to tap home was sublime. His work rate was high, working back to make tackles and, it is clear to see how his all-round game has developed in Madrid. In the second half, he dropped deep and played neat passes to start attacks. It may not have been outstanding but it was energetic and positive. He will continue to get back to full fitness and any opposition will fear him.
Son Heung-Min’s Cameo
With West Bromwich Albion to come on Sunday 8th November in the Premier League, Jose Mourinho may have been tempted to let Son Heung-min have a full rest. Son is not like that though. He wants to play. Within seconds of coming on, he made a delightful run and, with his first touch, passed for Lo Celso to prod home. Son constantly wanted the ball, talked to his teammates and was once more a delight to watch.
This was a marked improvement from the defeat to Antwerp but there were still signs of where Tottenham need to improve. Ludogorets managed to get their goal far too easily and had a couple of other chances. The defence, on the whole, was solid but still at times lacked concentration. Clean sheets have been hard to come by this season for Spurs. Ben Davies is relishing the competition for his place since the arrival of Sergio Reguilon and, despite some harsh criticism from some fans, is improving. He stayed wide and got forward well and is a player Jose Mourinho likes.
The 200 Club
Harry Kane grabbed his 200th goal for Tottenham Hotspur on his 300th appearance. Mourinho was able to take him off at halftime, and he will be ready to add to that on Sunday. If there is anything left from Harry Kane to surprise the footballing world, you would be hard pushed to know what he can actually do. He is now in sight of Bobby Smith and 66 goals away from equalling the record of Jimmy Greaves. It will be foolish of a person to bet against that record being beaten and more goals might see Tottenham Hotspur cruise past more teams to come.
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