Spurs ran out clear winners 3 – 0 though not without looking unconvincing at times. APOEL were arguably more experienced in the Champions’ League than Spurs who were without seven first team players: Lamela, Dembelé, Rose, Wanyama (injured); Erikson (sick); Vertonghen, Dele (suspended). Maybe three points were not just going to be a formality but, largely thanks to Kane’s hat trick, they came away comfortable winners on the night.
Lloris – 6
Currently, he doesn’t have to face too many shots in games and maybe that’s why his concentration is suspect. Terrible sweeper-keeper clearance that could as easily have been a goal as not. Didn’t even make an attempt at the ball which hit the crossbar. He needed to improve in the second half which he promptly did from the off, not only saving but holding onto the shot when he needed to. Thereafter looked to be on his game.
Toby – 6
Guilty of allowing APOEL the two outstanding chances of the first half but played just about the only incisive ball of that half for the goal. Looked happier, more commanding and involved in the back four following the change, a much tighter defensive unit.
Sanchez – 6
The back three didn’t appear to work close enough together as a unit in the first period and could look exposed when APOEL broke, perhaps because the wing backs played so high. He can be rash when he’s exposed, but was responsible for another clean sheet.
Davies – 6
Did OK as a centre back but Spurs were transformed when Poch took off Aurier and they played with a proper right and left full back.
Aurier – 6
Clearly worked hard to defend calmly and took responsibility for for trying to bend crosses into dangerous areas.
Dier – 5
Winks – 7
In a game like this, at least appears to make himself available and is busy. Although he makes some strong runs, doesn’t really offer much that is truly incisive at the cutting edge. Promising.
Trips – 6
Always came back inside on his favoured right foot and so, when we needed to get to the byeline on the flanks, it didn’t happen on the left. So much happier when changed to a position he knows and can play.
Sissoko – 6
Still clumsy for me and, like many Spurs fans, I am trying to to be won over. However, he looks fit, willing and growing in confidence. An assist tonight.
Son – 6
Not sharp with final balls or chances tonight.
Kane – 10
Given half a clear chance in the first half, scored with ruthless efficiency. Given half a chance in the second half, scored with ruthless efficiency. Given half a chance with his head. Goal. Hat trick.The difference in the game. The only efforts on target for Spurs? 100% conversion. Surely there’s not a worrying gulf in class emerging between Kane and the team? Shades of days of Bale?
Llorente, N’Koudou and Georgiou all came on and offered contributions.
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