Spurs hammered Newcastle in a great performance that saw them edge closer to the top four
Strikes from Emmanuel Adebayor (2), Paulinho and a late Nacer Chadli wonder effort condemned Newcastle to their fourth straight home loss and went some way to demonstrate Tottenham's Champions League credentials.
Below are the Spurs player ratings from the game:
Hugo Lloris 9/10 - Lloris was able to play behind a defence that had good pace all across it, making the opponent's attempts to play the ball behind them that much tougher. He made great saves against Pappis Cisse, the first outstanding from a point blank header. In the second half he made a phenomenal stop with his left hand from a Debuchy header and also saved with his legs from Sissoko with ten minutes remaining.
Kyle Walker 7.5/10 - The England right back had a really strong match at full back, though predictably much of his good work came as he drove forward. One run, that bypassed the Newcastle defence as he got on the end of a through ball, saw Walker left with a tough cross that he still managed to found a Spurs man with.
Younes Kaboul 9/10 - The big Frenchman made his long awaited return from injury and was a rock at the back for Spurs. His pace was an important improvement on a defence susceptible to quick forward play, and Kaboul looked eager to impress, combining barnstorming runs forward with great challenges on the likes of Sammy Ameobi and Yoan Gouffran.
Jan Vertonghen 7.5/10 - Tottenham captain in Michael Dawson's absence, he was less involved than Kaboul so didn't have the chance to impress to the same degree, though maybe that's the mark of the stronger defender. One flicked header wide. This may be the start of the a new first choice defensive partnership.
Kyle Naughton 7/10 - Naughton had a good game at the back, rarely being troubled as he deputised for Danny Rose. Made a couple of acute interceptions, though didn't get forward to the same degree as Walker on the other flank.
Etienne Capoue 8/10 - The former Toulouse man finally got a chance to stake another claim for the first team after starting against Newcastle, and he didn't disappoint as he did plenty of powerful destructive work to provide protection for the Spurs back four. Impressed and showed Tim Sherwood that he is someone to keep very much in mind when it comes to picking that midfield. Showed some great skill and a change of pace to burst forward on one occasion.
Nabil Bentaleb 8.5/10 - Had a much improved game compared to the Everton match, in which he struggled to influence the proceedings. Better at St James' park, where he did well for much of the 90 minutes. Provided the cross that Tim Krul failed to deal with, with Adebayor tapping in to the net, and also one exquisite back heal for Chadli's curled strike. Looks much better in a more advanced position than further back.
Paulinho 8.5/10 - Was already playing well both with his link up play in midfield and his defensive work, before his wonderful flick set off a move with Adebayor that saw the Brazilian pounce on the Togo man's saved strike. Looked back to full fitness as he was full of plenty of running.
Moussa Dembele 8/10 - Very much the central figure now in Tim Sherwood's midfield, made some great turns and touches as Spurs looked the better team in the middle of the park. Was withdrawn just after the hour with what looked like a groin strain, and the club will be sweating on his fitness ahead of a key period.
Aaron Lennon 8/10 - Lennon had a decent game playing in an unconventional left midfield/number 10 position. Drifting somewhat across the width of the pitch he was a penetrating threat on several occasions. Struck the near post with a low effort that nearly caught Tim Krul out and made an excellent run as he nearly got the end of Walker's outstanding cutback.
Emmanel Adebayor 9/10 - All of a sudden he looks like Tottenham's Luis Suarez. Adebayor was everywhere today, and so much of what he did came off. Some outstanding moments of control and holding onto possession up front and out wide brought his teammates into the game, and he was alert to tap home after Krul spilled Bentaleb's cross. Then linked up with Paulinho and hit a great low strike from distance that Krul did well to save, only for the Brazilian to gobble up. Hit his second goal with a volley into the ground that bounced over the flailing Dutch keeper, and withdrawn for a well earned rest.
Andros Townsend ('64) 7/10 - After coming on, his first moments in the game were tracking back well on the right hand side to help out his defence. Seemed a little short of the impressive pace that fired his early season, but got some valuable minutes under his belt as edges his way back to fitness. Forced Krul into a save that Adebayor then volleyed home, and should of scored a fifth for Spurs but shot into the body of a defender.
Nacer Chadli ('75) 8.5/10 - Able to get involved once he took to the pitch in place of Lennon, and played his part in the build up to the third goal, before he curled a beautiful strike in to the top corner for Tottenham's fourth. Really impressive off the bench.
Roberto Soldado ('84) 6/10 - Didn't have much of a chance to influence proceedings though was putting in decent runs as Spurs stretched Newcastle at the death.
image: © wonker