Tottenham Hotspur’s off-season activity created a lot of fears in the mind of their supporters as they became the first club since 2003 to not sign a single player in the transfer window.
Those fears about yet another season of ‘what ifs’ increased further as their home stadium, White Hart Lane, extension project did not finish on time.
But on Saturday, Mauricio Pochettino’s men once again showed that after everything which happened off the pitch, they are a force to be reckoned with after a thumping 3-1 win against newly-promoted Fulham at Wembley.
The end of Kane's August curse
Harry Kane is undoubtedly one of the most prolific Premier League strikers, if not the most, but the month of August seemed to be a real hurdle in his way every season.
The England captain could not manage to score a single league goal in August for Spurs and it was becoming a tag which could hurt his confidence in a distant future.
But on Saturday, the 25-year-old finally broke the deadlock and ended his August curse by scoring in the 77th-minute following a pass from Erik Lamela.
It was a strike which was not that significant in terms of the results as the North London side were already winning and looked comfortable, but in terms of self-confidence, it was nothing short of gold for Kane and Spurs, both of whom will go with renewed confidence in an all-important clash against mighty Manchester United at the weekend.
Moura and Trippier the real stars
Spurs success in the last couple of season was down to the performance of four players in front of the goal - Kane, Christian Eriksen, Dele Alli and Son Heung-Min.
On every occasion, one out of those four delivered for the team and it became a rare occasion when someone else stood up for the team.
On Saturday, it was one of those rare occasions when two unlikely heroes – right-back Kevin Trippier and winger Lucas Moura – stole the show for the home side.
Trippier restarted from where he left for England in the recently concluded FIFA World Cup and produced a peach of a free-kick to score the team’s second.
His emergence as a dead-ball specialist has surely took some pressure off from the likes of Eriksen and can go a long way in helping Spurs throughout the season.
On the other hand, Moura kept his good off-season form going and scored the team’s opener in the 43rd-minute.
It was not only his attacking display which was a big positive, but his ability to press would please Pochettino the most.
The 26-year-old made four tackles, joint-most in the match, which showed his commitment towards the team’s cause.
Such performance from two of the unknowns in the squad would give Spurs the kind of lift they need going further into a season which might prove to be a toughest one in their bid to secure a top-four finish.