Son Heung-min scored twice as Tottenham Hotspur maintained the pressure on Chelsea with a brutal demolition of sorry Watford. Three goals in the final 15 minutes of the first half did the damage at White Hart Lane, as Spurs recorded their sixth successive Premier League victory and 11th consecutive triumph at home.
Dele Alli opened the scoring courtesy of a sumptuous long-range effort before Eric Dier doubled the home side’s advantage. There was no respite for the Hornets, as Son netted either side of half-time to complete the rout. Here are three things we have learnt from a pulsating clash.
Son proves himself a worthy deputy
Harry Kane’s ankle injury was supposed to spell disaster for Tottenham, who have come to rely on their homegrown star for goals in the past two seasons. Vincent Janssen has struggled to adapt to life in the Premier League since moving to London from the Netherlands. But Son has come into his own in Kane’s absence and now has 11 goals from 27 appearances – already seven more than he managed last campaign.
There have been doubts as to whether the South Korean is a natural finisher, but he showed here that he certainly has an eye for goal and is not fazed by the big occasion. Each of his strikes demonstrated how clinical he can be when a chance presents itself. Son has become a crucial member of Mauricio Pochettino’s squad and, given his versatility, he may still keep his place even if Kane, who was brought on as a second-half substitute, is reinstated into the starting XI once he has regained full fitness.
Alli has all the attributes to become world-class
Such has been his monumental impact at Spurs, it’s easy to forget that he is still only 20 years old. But Alli is undoubtedly one of the brightest talents in Europe and a beacon of hope for English football. He has everything; pace, power, skill, vision and goals.
This is just his second season in the Premier League, but he is already established for Tottenham and England. In fact, he is arguably the first name on the team-sheet for both. Against Watford, he scored a delightful goal that was worthy of winning any game of football. After collecting a pass from Son, Alli cut inside and unleashed a 20-year effort that curled past Heurelho Gomes into the top corner of the net.
It was his 16th goal from 30 Premier League appearances this season – a remarkable statistic for a midfielder. It’s no surprise he is being coveted by the likes of Real Madrid, but Daniel Levy surely would not sanction the sale of player who cost just £5 million from MK Dons only two years ago.
Job done this season for Watford
Watford aren’t the first team to be rolled over by Spurs and they won’t be the last. Their sole objective at the start of the season was to maintain their top-flight status; something which they will surely achieve barring an improbable sequence of results. The appointment of Walter Mazzarri was greeted with some surprise – as was the sacking of Quique Sanchez Flores that preceded it – but the Italian has done an admirable job with the resources at his disposal.
The Hornets are in the top 10 of the table and will look to build in the summer. Given that Spurs still have designs on the title and with Watford having nothing to play for, this was always going to be a tough assignment for the visitors. So long as complacency does not creep in, the supporters will forgive the odd anomaly because, in the grander scheme of things, they have achieved their chief aim.
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