Harry Kane scored his 200th Tottenham goal in a comfortable 3-1 Europa League victory over Ludogorets at the Huvepharma Arena on Thursday.
Captaining the team on his 300th appearance in all competitions, Kane became the third Spurs player to score a double century of goals when he headed in Lucas Moura's corner in the 13th minute.
The England international and Lucas then reversed roles for the latter to double the scoring after the half-hour mark, with Jose Mourinho's decision to make seven changes from the side that lost 1-0 to Royal Antwerp in their previous Group J outing paying dividends.
Kane was withdrawn at half-time and Claudiu Keseru pulled one back for Ludogerts but Giovanni Lo Celso restored the visitors' two-goal cushion 12 minutes later and they cruised to the three points.
It seemed like Kane's wait for his landmark strike would not be ended in Bulgaria when he lofted a glorious one-on-one opening over and rattled the post with a powerful drive inside the opening six minutes.
The third time proved the charm, however, as his next effort was a powerful header from Lucas' corner that Plamen Iliev could not keep out.
Iliev denied Matt Doherty before Gareth Bale slid a pass into Kane, who returned the favour for Lucas with a perfectly weighted square ball that the Brazilian tapped home.
Seemingly sensing the job was done, Mourinho replaced Kane with Carlos Vinicius for the second half and Keseru halved the deficit in the 50th minute with a volley after Bernard Tekpetey's shot looped up off Harry Winks.
Son Heung-min replaced Lucas in the 61st minute and 15 seconds later teed up Lo Celso to ensure that Spurs' Europa League campaign was put back on track.
What does it mean? Alli still on the fringes
Mourinho hooked Dele Alli at half-time in the defeat to Antwerp and the attacking midfielder was left out of the squad to face Brighton and Hove Albion last weekend.
Despite having five subs available to him, the Tottenham boss opted not to give Alli any game time even once the result was secured.
Spurs king Kane
By setting up Lucas' goal in the first half, Kane moved into double figures for goals and assist in all competitions in just his 13th appearance in all competitions this season. In this form it will not take long for him to reach Spurs' all-time leading goalscoring mark of 266 set by Jimmy Greaves.
200 - Harry Kane has scored his 200th goal for Tottenham Hotspur, the third player to reach the milestone for the club. His strike tonight was also his 100th away from home for Spurs. Elite. #LUDTOT pic.twitter.com/wFY3WN6S0K— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) November 5, 2020
A capable back-up?
Carlos Vinicius was sent on for his third Spurs appearance – all of which have come in the Europa League. He missed a fantastic opportunity from 10 yards in the 53rd minute and struggled to get involved in the game. Kane (19) was the only Spurs player with fewer than his 20 touches – though the skipper certainly made his count for more – while his six successful passes were the fewest on the team.
Key Opta Facts
- Tottenham secured only their second win in their past 10 away Europa League matches.
- Ludogorets have lost their past five Europa League matches, their worst losing run in the competition.
- Harry Kane became the third player to score 200 goals for Tottenham 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).
Tottenham travel to struggling West Brom in the Premier League on Sunday, while Ludogorets take on fellow First League title hopefuls CSKA Sofia on the same day.