Stealing candy from a baby
I don't care that it was Bournemouth. Don't care about their injury plight. I don't care that Artur Boruc had a calamitous day between the sticks. I can even look past the softly conceded opening goal inside a minute that felt ominously scary for all of nine minutes until we equalised. Contrary to any accidental tannoy announcement, this wasn't even men versus boys. It was more akin to stealing candy from a baby.
There's two things I'm taking from today and running to the hills with:
a) The Harry Kane hat-trick
b) Punishing, persistent attacking
Kane took the match ball home and is now sitting on more goals (in the league) than he had this time last season. He's come through a difficult patch which was made even more uncomfortable thanks to pressure from the media and the sheer expectancy of his form last season compared to the lack of goals this term.
Even though he's misfired in front of goal and has appeared frustrated, the quality of his football hasn't been a question of debate. He's continued to produce solid displays in amongst all the issues of tiredness and no optional second striker. Love his character and desire.
Sure, it was three goals against defensively dubious opposition. Kane won and scored the penalty, slotted home an excellent Eriksen cross and accepted his hat-trick with a supporting role from Boruc. Acceptable rewards for all the effort.
Add to it Mousa Dembele's finish and an Erik Lamela tap-in for the five and it ties into the professionalism of the performance and result. We didn't panic at 1-0. We just kept moving the ball forward.
This wasn't buttery smooth football but Tottenham took advantage of the hosts generosity and duly punished them every single time. I don't know how many times I've seen us come up against a goalkeeper in exceptional form so I was more than grateful for the persistent invites to stick the ball into the net.
Not everyone will be this welcoming and looking ahead to November we have some spectacular looking fixtures and pragmatic rotation to consider as we face up to what might be a defining four weeks as we head to the festive period.
Mauricio Pochettino knows that nine games unbeaten (in the league) will count for very little if we fail to ignite purposeful momentum against Villa, Arsenal, West Ham and Chelsea (not forgetting Anderlecht and Quarabag). Six massive games.
We've only won five games in the fourteen we've played so far but we've only lost three times. Kane now has to reclaim his consistency in front of goal and we need to be ruthless against opposition teams that will offer a far more rounded challenge. We don't concede many but we draw a fair few. We're hard to beat but we sometimes find it hard to win. If we had a bit more about ourselves (i.e. killer instinct) we'd have won more games.
You don't always have to graft hard or play with immense intensity to claim the victory. It was still class to see us brush a team aside by simply forcing them into errors. We remain fragile if we're not at full strength. If teams attempt to play open football against us, we hold our own (4-1 versus City is the premium example). November however will require the utmost guile.
If all the 5-1 is worth is three points and a confidence booster for Harry, then that suits me fine.