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Ludogorets vs Tottenham Hotspur. Europa League Group J.

Huvepharma Arena.

Ludogorets 1

  • C Keseru (50th minute)

Tottenham Hotspur 3

  • H Kane (13th minute)
  • Lucas Moura (32nd minute)
  • G Lo Celso (62nd minute)

Ludogorets 1-3 Tottenham: Harry Kane scores 200th goal for Spurs in much-improved European showing

Match report as Harry Kane reaches incredible landmark at just 27-years-old; Giovani Lo Celso scores and impresses in midfield in easy Europa League win over Bulgarian champions

Harry Kane
Image: Harry Kane celebrates his 200th goal for Tottenham

Harry Kane scored his 200th goal for Tottenham in a much-improved Europa League showing for Jose Mourinho’s men as they dispatched Ludogorets 3-1.

Mourinho questioned his players' attitude after a much-changed team lost in Antwerp last week but Spurs had intensity to their play from the off in Bulgaria.

Jose Mourinho 0:32
Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho was pleased with the attitude of his team during their 3-1 win over Bulgarian champions Ludogorets - having criticised their approach to week's loss in Antwerp.

On his 300th appearance, Kane's landmark moment came when he headed home a Lucas Moura corner before he repaid the favour by setting up Moura for 2-0.

Claudiu Keseru gave the hosts a glimmer of hope when reducing the deficit after the break, but the Premier League side were always in control and Heung-Min Son took just 17 seconds to make his impact off the bench, setting up the impressive Giovani Lo Celso to score the third.

Player ratings

Tottenham: Hart (7), Doherty (7), Alderweireld (7), Dier (7), Davies (7), Winks (7), Sissoko (7), Lo Celso (8), Bale (7), Lucas (8), Kane (8)

Subs: Vinicius (5), Son (8), Ndombele (6), Hojbjerg (7), Bergwijn (6)

Man of the Match: Giovani Lo Celso

The result leaves Mourinho's side in a comfortable position with six points from their first three games in Group J with two home games still to come.

Team news

Jose Mourinho made six changes from the win over Brighton but the spine of the team remained very strong with Harry Kane leading the line. Joe Hart, Ben Davies, Harry Winks, Giovani Lo Celso, Gareth Bale and Lucas Moura were all handed starts.

How Kane joined 200 club

This was Spurs' second trip to Bulgaria in the space of 60 days after coming through a qualifying tie with Lokomotiv Plovdiv earlier this season. Mourinho called for a powerful performance and his players answered that call with a completely dominant first-half display that should have yielded more than the two goals they grabbed.

Kane should have brought the landmark up in less than 90 seconds but wildly blazed over after Harry Winks' fine pass put him in the clear. Fuelled by frustration following that miss, Kane then let fly, thumping a 25-yard effort off the post.

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But there was a sense of inevitability about the goal that eventually came as Kane climbed highest from Moura's corner to bring up his double century.

Harry Kane celebrates after opening the scoring against Ludogorets
Image: Harry Kane celebrates after opening the scoring against Ludogorets

It soon became apparent that it was just going to be a question of how many goals Tottenham would score as Gareth Bale's dipping free-kick was scooped away by goalkeeper Plamen Iliev and Moura missed from close range.

Moura made up for that squandered chance moments later when Bale played Kane in down the right and the striker claimed another assist as he rolled a perfect pass across goal that Moura finished easily from three yards out.

Mourinho decided to replace Kane at half-time with one eye on the trip to West Brom on Sunday but the manager might have regretted that after Keseru reduced Ludogorets' deficit four minutes after the restart with one of their first forays into Tottenham territory. He was in the right position to turn home from close range after Bernard Tekpetey's shot was deflected into his path.

Kane's replacement, Carlos Vinicius, who is still settling in following his move from Benfica, should have opened his account when Lo Celso pulled the ball back to him, but he blazed over.

Mourinho sent Son on just after the hour and he needed only 17 seconds to make an impact as he teed up Lo Celso to grab a deserved goal after bossing things from midfield.

Man of the match: Giovani Lo Celso

Giovani Lo Celso celebrates scoring Tottenham's third goal
Image: Giovani Lo Celso celebrates scoring Tottenham's third goal

Lo Celso's attitude in midfield set the tone in this professional showing. He was zipping around the pitch in tenacious fashion, linking with the front three impressively with his trademark cute passing. His goal was more about Son's excellent assist than his easy finish but the Argentine deserved to have his moment after a performance that may provide Mourinho with a headache in midfield for Sunday's clash with West Brom.

Perhaps Kane could have got the nod for the outstanding player award for his landmark goal but during his 45 minutes on the field, he was actually wasteful with his finishing. On another night, he could have scored four or five. I'm sure the Spurs fans can forgive him.

What the manager said

Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho: "We started the game with ambition, which was different to what we did in Antwerp. So good attitude to start. We tried to kill the game in the first half.

"It was not possible with 2-0 because 2-0 the result is still open, but it was a strong start and performance with two good goals and hitting the post.

"We completely dominated and I don't remember one single situation for them of danger. That made a difference because in Antwerp we gave an advantage to the opponent and then when they were good they were winning. They closed everything the way they could and we couldn't react."

Opta stats

  • Kane became the third player to score 200 goals for Tottenham Hotspur in all competitions, after Jimmy Greaves (266) and Bobby Smith (208).
  • Kane is the top scoring Premier League player in all competitions this season, netting 12 goals in 13 appearances, with only Robert Lewandowski scoring as many for a team in Europe's top five leagues (also 12 for Bayern Munich).
  • Kane has been directly involved in 22 goals in just 13 appearances in all competitions for Spurs this season (12 goals, 10 assists).
  • Including qualifiers, Mourinho has won 15 of his 21 matches in the UEFA Europa League with Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur (71% - W15 D3 L3).

What's next?

Tottenham are back in Premier League action on Sunday against West Brom in their last match before the international break.

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