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26 February 2017|Tottenham Hotspur

Harry Kane scored his third hat-trick in his last nine games as we over-powered Stoke City at the Lane on Sunday afternoon and recorded our third straight 4-0 win against the Potters.

All four goals were scored in the first half, with Dele Alli adding a stoppage-time fourth as we responded in perfect fashion to Thursday’s Europa League disappointment to climb back to second in the Premier League table.

It took just 14 minutes to open the scoring, Kane clinically latching onto a loose ball in the area and driving past City goalkeeper Lee Grant. That was the 100th goal of his club career.

Number 101 arrived in the 32nd minute, but not before Hugo Lloris had denied former Spur Peter Crouch with an excellent close-range save and Jan Vertonghen had smashed an effort against the crossbar. Then it was Kane’s turn to shine again, connecting well with a half-volley from a cleared corner to make it 2-0.

We were well in control at that stage and Kane’s treble was completed on 37 minutes when Christian Eriksen rolled a free-kick into his path 30 yards out and the England striker’s on-target effort flicked off Crouch in the Stoke wall and wrong-footed Grant on its way into the net.

There was still time before the interval for another goal though, Kane this time turning provider as he broke away down the right and centred for Dele to stretch out a leg and smash the ball home for 4-0.

The second half was always going to struggle to match the first in terms of excitement and, while both sides had a few glimpses of goal, there was no further addition to the scoreline as we ran out comfortable winners.

Team news

There wasn’t much to report on the team news front, with Mauricio Pochettino keeping faith with his starting line-up from the game against KAA Gent at Wembley Stadium three days ago, with the seven substitutes also the same. Stoke City were also unchanged from their last game, a 1-0 home win over Crystal Palace two weeks ago, which meant a return to White Hart Lane for Crouch.

Key action

Goal: Spurs 1-0 Stoke – Harry Kane – 14mins
While it wasn’t the most action-packed start to the game we were certainly in the ascendency early on, even though it was Stoke who had the first shot at goal, Joe Allen firing into the side-netting from the edge of the area. But just moments later, Dele fed a pass in to Eriksen inside the box, his flick didn’t come off but the loose ball came to Kane who took a touch and drilled right-footed low into the bottom corner.

Woodwork: Vertonghen hits the crossbar – 27mins
The goal livened the game up and chances started to come for both sides. Kyle Walker hit a half-volley in mid-air which flew over the bar, while at the other end, Ramadan Sobhi broke down Stoke’s left and delivered a low cross which Crouch poked goalwards from six yards, only for Lloris to make a brilliant instinctive save with his legs. Then Vertonghen cracked a right-foot drive against the crossbar after controlling a deep corner on 27 minutes and Kane’s 22-yard effort just cleared the far upright.

Above: Eric Dier goes up for an aerial challenge with Peter Crouch.

Goal: Spurs 2-0 Stoke – Harry Kane – 32mins
The pressure was building and when Eriksen squared a free-kick to Walker, Potters goalkeeper Grant made a very good save to tip over the England international’s 30-yard drive. But from the resulting corner, the ball came to Kane just inside the area and he showed great technique to get his left foot over the ball and drive it through the legs of Victor Wanyama and past Grant.

Goal: Spurs 3-0 Stoke – Harry Kane – 37mins
We were well in control at this stage and the third goal duly arrived five minutes later, from the boot of who else but Kane? We were awarded a free-kick 30 yards out, Eriksen touched it a few yards to the striker whose shot was heading goalwards, taking a touch off Crouch on the edge of the wall and wrong-footing Grant as it rolled across the line.

Goal: Spurs 4-0 Stoke – Dele Alli – 45+1mins
A superb first-half performance was wrapped up in style just before the interval. Eriksen found Kane 10 yards inside the Stoke half, his clever flick took him away from Bruno Martins Indi and through on goal down the right channel but instead of going for glory this time, he sent over a cross which Dele connected with on the stretch to smash past Grant and into the net.

Saves: Grant keeps the score at four – 73, 85mins
There was an early injury setback in the second period as Toby Alderweireld limped off to be replaced by Kevin Wimmer, while Lloris needed to be alert to keep out a Charlie Adam effort and then react quickly to prevent Allen from pouncing on the loose ball. At the other end, Grant produced a stunning save to deny Kane his fourth goal, diving full-length to his right to tip a curling effort away on 73 minutes, before stopping the marauding Walker from adding to our tally in the 85th minute.

Mauricio Pochettino said

"The performance was fantastic, I’m very pleased with the effort after Thursday. We were all disappointed after Wembley and this was a big, big response. It’s for that reason we all feel very proud. We took some decisions because we believed we could win and show good energy. We played very well. The first half was fantastic, the second half we controlled and managed the game and created some more. The three points were important for us to keep our position in the table."

Dele Alli said

"We’ve been dominant all year at White Hart Lane and we owed it to the fans as well, especially after what happened (against KAA Gent on Thursday). It was a great performance from all the lads, especially Harry getting another hat-trick. He’s a great striker and when you’ve got a striker like that to score the goals it makes it a lot easier for you."

The competition doesn’t wait for you and it’s important to keep going, to be clever in how we assess every situation and think ahead.

Mauricio Pochettino

Match data

Spurs (3-4-2-1): Lloris (c), Dier, Alderweireld (Wimmer 49), Vertonghen (Winks 66), Walker, Dembele, Wanyama, Davies, Eriksen, Dele, Kane (Son 86). Substitutes (not used): Vorm, Trippier, Sissoko, Janssen.

Stoke (4-2-3-1): Grant, Bardsley, Shawcross (c), Martins Indi, Pieters, Whelan (Cameron 82), Adam (Afellay 60), Arnautovic, Allen, Sobhi, Crouch (Berahino 60). Substitutes (not used): Given, Muniesa, Diouf, Imbula.

Goals: Spurs – Kane 14, 32, 37, Dele 45.

Yellow cards: Spurs – Wimmer, Wanyama; Stoke – Whelan, Adams, Arnautovic.

Referee: Jonathan Moss.

Attendance: 31,864.

Up next

The match against Stoke City was our first of four Sunday home games in succession. Next weekend we entertain Everton, who are unbeaten in six Premier League matches and climbed up to seventh in the table on Saturday with their 2-0 victory at home to Sunderland. We drew 1-1 at Goodison Park on the opening day of the season.