The Warmdown: Sunday success as Spurs see off struggling Wolves
 (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Having been on the receiving end of an attacking masterclass in their defeat to Leeds United last Saturday, Tottenham Hotspur responded well in a comfortable victory at home to Wolverhampton Wanderers this Sunday.

Ryan Mason made one change to the side that were played off the park at Elland Road, with academy product Japhet Tanganga filling in for Serge Aurier, who was missing through a groin injury. 

Harry Kane led the line as usual, with Gareth Bale, Heung-Min Son, and Dele Alli completing Spurs' attacking quartet.

Morgan Gibbs-White earned himself back-to-back starts following his first-ever Premier League goal against Brighton & Hove Albion last weekend, whilst Fabio Silva was favoured ahead of Willian Jose.

Nuno Espirito Santos was once again looking to Adama Traore to inflict some damage on the counter-attack, as the Portuguese boss was looking to become the first manager ever to win his first three away games against Spurs. 

The first half was looking to conclude in a stalemate, as the Lilywhites dominated the ball and fashioned a few chances, but Wolves, and in particular captain Conor Coady did well to prevent any serious threats to Rui Patricio's goal. 

However in the final five minutes Spurs went up a gear, having two attempts cleared off the line in quick succession, courtesy once again of Conor Coady. 

Nonetheless, Mr reliable was on the scene again as England captain Harry Kane latched onto an exquisite pass from Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg as he evaded some last-ditch tackles, before finally rounding the keeper and giving his side the lead on the stroke of halftime. 

More domination ensued from the north London side in the second half, as they pressed for a second. Wolves had a few opportunities on the counter, with Traore and Silva not managed to beat veteran Hugo Lloris. 

The boys in white went on to solidify their lead as Hojbjerg capped off a top performance with a goal, as he followed up a Bale shot to slot in and secure all three points for Spurs.

  • Dele shines again

One thing interim boss Ryan Mason can be praised for is the reintegration of Dele Alli into the starting XI. The England international has only started five times in the league this season, with three of those caps coming in the period following the departure of Jose Mourinho. 

Dele is clearly playing with more confidence since his playtime has become more regular, and this was evident again today. The former MK Dons player was at the heart of the Spurs attack for 80 minutes before he was replaced by Tanguy Ndombele, and his impact was clear for all to see. 

His desire to retain the ball was one thing that stood out, with the 25-year-old tracking back and helping out the defence when they were under pressure. 

His ability to progress the ball up the pitch has always been an excellent feature of his game, as the forward demonstrated his ability to drop a shoulder and glide past his opponents, leaving the likes of Leander Dendoncker in his wake as he bore down on goal frequently. 

Dele should have had a goal in the second half, as he followed up Harry Kane's saved shot as it rebounded off the post; only to strike the post with his side-footed effort himself. 

Despite not registering a goal or assist today, his flair, nutmegs and confidence was a joy to watch and you get the feeling that he will be a regular feature for the remainder of Spurs' games as the season comes to a close. 

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  • Europe or bust for Spurs?

Despite a convincing victory for Spurs today, there seems to be a pattern emerging in the last month in terms of their results. They are consistent in dispatching the weaker teams in the league, however, when they face a team that presses high and are aggressive in their play, it seems to cause them more issues. 

This is reflected in their results over the last two weeks. Having breezed past Sheffield United a fortnight ago, they were undone by Leeds who are renowned for their attacking play style. 

This pattern could emerge once again as Spurs host Aston Villa on Wednesday evening, in the company of 10,000 fans returning to the stadium. 

Villa are another team that plays with no fear and are capable of causing lots of issues for any team they play, and they will be boosted by the return of Jack Grealish, who is essential in their setup. 

The pressure will be mounting on the side that failed to secure a major trophy again this season, as they face a real possibility of entering next season without any European football.

The likelihood of Spurs playing in the Champions League next season is extremely thin. However, a place in the top six is entirely in their hands. With the win over Wolves, Spurs leapfrog West Ham United and sit sixth.

Should they finish there, they would enter the Europa League for the second season in a row. Considering the reason Daniel Levy decided to build the new Tottenham Hotspur stadium was to house elite football, the bare minimum he will be expecting is to host matches on a Thursday night.

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Should they fail to do so, they would face the prospect of financial issues, as they are already in debt thanks to the implications of COVID-19, alongside the stadium debt they have accumulated. 

Alongside this, top-level stars such as Kane, Son and Bale will not be impressed with a lack of European football, which could cause problems when the summer transfer window opens. 

Having said that, Spurs are guaranteed a top-six finish should they win their remaining games against Villa and FA Cup winners Leicester City. Their fate is in their hands, and there is certainly still lots to play for as the season draws to a close. 

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