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Spurs smash five past struggling Stoke

Spurs smash five past struggling Stoke
Tottenham had won just one of their previous six Premier League games

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino challenged his Tottenham players to consistently show their “true quality” after an emphatic win over Stoke City at Wembley.

Harry Kane scored twice as Spurs scored four second-half goals to climb above Arsenal into fifth in the Premier League table.

It ended a four-game run without a league win, and Pochettino is demanding his side show the same consistency between now and the end of the season.

“That is how we need to play from now,” said the Argentine, after Spurs scored five for the first time this season.

“Consistency between now and the end of the season is so important if we want to finish in the top four. The team showed their true quality.”

Tottenham Hotspur 5-1 Stoke City: Mauricio Pochettino praises Spurs’ aggression

Spurs went ahead when Potters skipper Ryan Shawcross inadvertently diverted the ball past his own keeper – before three goals in the space of 12 minutes put the game out of sight.

Son Heung-min doubled the lead and Kane’s header made it 3-0.

Kane drilled home the fourth, while Son set up Christian Eriksen for the fifth goal before Shawcross headed a late consolation.

Pochettino admitted Tottenham’s Champions League campaign had been a distraction.

But with Spurs, who finished above Real Madrid in the group stage, not due to play in Europe again until February, Pochettino is hoping his side can concentrate on their domestic form.

“Last season we were frustrated because we were very good in the Premier League but we were a disaster in the Champions League,” he added.

“This season the team was so determined to show that they can compete in the Champions League and when you mix with the Premier League that maybe was a bit of a distraction.

“But now we can only be focussed on the Premier League and winning games.”

Stoke have won only once in seven league games and drop to 15th, three points above the relegation zone.

In addition, they are the first club in Premier League history to lose to the the same opponent by four goals or more in four consecutive meetings.

Spurs warming to Wembley

Since demolishing Liverpool 4-1 in October, Spurs had won just once in six Premier League games.

Their Wembley troubles have been well documented but this was a performance when it all came together.

Son has been the one shining light during a poor run in the league, and the South Korean was once again a driving force as Spurs scored more than once in a Premier League match at Wembley for only the second time this season.

It was his low cross which led to Shawcross putting into his own net, while he scored the second goal and set up the fifth.

After throwing away points against Burnley, Swansea and West Brom at Wembley, Tottenham were at their ruthless best on Saturday.

It could have been more but for Stoke keeper Jack Butland.

The England international produced two fine stops in the dying minutes to keep out Eriksen, who was making his 200th appearance for the club, and Kane as the Potters were completely overrun.

Alan Shearer: Tottenham have got to turn up against smaller teams

More capital punishment for Stoke

This was an embarrassing defeat at the national stadium for Stoke, who have now lost three of their past four league games.

These are worrying times for Potters boss Mark Hughes, whose side started well but capitulated after half-time.

Kane missed a glorious chance at 1-0 and Butland almost gifted the England striker a goal after losing control of the ball inside his own penalty area.

Having let in four at home to Chelsea and another seven at Manchester City, Stoke are conceding at a rate of more than two goals a game.

We couldn’t deal with Spurs’ power & pace – Hughes

They have now failed to win on their past 16 league trips to London, conceding 37 goals in 16 games and taking six points from a possible 48 since beating Spurs at White Hart Lane in November 2014.

“It’s not good enough doing ok just for 45 minutes,” said Hughes. “We couldn’t deal with Tottenham’s power and pace. We struggled in one-on-one situations, we needed to get tighter.

“Today will damage our confidence. That is the worry for us.”

Man of the match – Son Heung-min (Tottenham)

Son Heung-min is collecting man of the match awards at a phenomenal rate. This was another exceptional performance as he inspired Spurs to an easy win.

Six own goals for Shawcross – the stats

  • Shawcross scored the sixth own goal of his Premier League career – only Richard Dunne (10), Martin Skrtel and Jamie Carragher (seven each) have scored more in the competition.
  • This was the first time a Stoke player had ever scored at both ends in a Premier League game.
  • Kane has scored eight Premier League goals against Stoke, only against Leicester City has he scored more in the competition (nine).
  • Kane scored his 90th Premier League goal in just his 131st game – only Alan Shearer (113 games) did so quicker.
  • This was Stoke’s 1000th top-flight defeat, making them the 15th side to reach that figure since its inception in 1888-89.

What’s next?

Spurs return to Wembley on Wednesday when Brighton are the visitors for a league game (kick-off 20:00 GMT), before Mauricio Pochettino’s side visit leaders Manchester City next Saturday (17:30).

Stoke are back on the road on Tuesday when they travel to Burnley in the Premier League (19:45).

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