Tottenham Hotspur returned to winning ways in emphatic fashion as they cruised to a 4-1 victory over embattled Sunderland at White Hart Lane yesterday.
The Black Cats drew first blood in the latter stages of the first half through Patrick van Aanholt, but Spurs hit back virtually from the restart, with Christian Eriksen netting the equaliser.
The London outfit stepped up their performance in front of goal after the half-time break, as goals from Mousa Dembélé, Eriksen and Harry Kane added gloss to the scoreline.
Spurs started the first half on the front foot and threatened the Black Cats’ goal as early as the fourth minute, Jan Vertonghen heading straight into the arms of young goalkeeper Jordan Pickford.
Pickford was again called into action just one minute later, getting down well to keep out Kane’s goal-bound effort.
Another good chance arrived on nine minutes when Sunderland failed to adequately clear their lines, and the ball fell to midfielder Dele Alli, who inexplicably skied his shot over the bar from inside the area.
The hosts continued to press forward in search of the opener and squandered another opportunity on 17 minutes, Kane dragging his shot wide of the mark under pressure from the defence.
Spurs were enjoying the lion’s share of possession, but it was Sunderland who broke the deadlock against the run of play on 40 minutes. Van Aanholt latched on to Adam Johnson’s through ball before cutting inside and firing into the side netting from a tight angle.
However, Sunderland’s lead lasted for just one minute, as Spurs hit back almost immediately. The initial effort from Kane was blocked by the outrushing Pickford, but the ball fell only as far as Eriksen, who found the back of the net via a deflection off midfielder Lee Cattermole.
Eriksen almost added to his tally in the second minute of first-half injury time, but Pickford was alert to the danger, tipping the midfielder’s shot round the post.
While Tottenham had failed to make the most of their chances in the first stanza, that was certainly not the case after the half-time break.
The breakthrough they were looking for eventually arrived on the hour mark. Pickford pulled off a double save to keep out efforts from Kane and Danny Rose, but the ball fell kindly to Dembele, whose shot on the