Tottenham 4-0 Ludogorets: Vinicius off the mark as Winks nets outrageous 54-yard lob
Vinicius cropped
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Two goals from Carlos Vinicius and a long-range strike from Harry Winks helped Tottenham to a big win over Ludogorets in the Europa League.

Carlos Vinicius scored twice as Tottenham claimed a comfortable 4-0 win over Ludogorets and edged closer to a place in the Europa League knockout stage.

Brazilian striker Vinicius, on a season-long loan from Benfica, netted for Spurs for the first time with two clinical finishes in a one-sided match on Thursday.

But the pick of the goals belonged to Harry Winks, as a spectacular long-range effort drifted over Ludogorets goalkeeper Plamen Iliev from 53.7 yards, before Lucas Moura added a fourth with a crisp finish.

The win moved second-placed Spurs level with Group J leaders Royal Antwerp on nine points, although the Belgian side are ahead courtesy of their head-to-head record.

Gareth Bale, in search of his 200th career goal, tried his luck with two free-kicks and a long-range effort early after Jose Mourinho made 10 changes from the side which beat Manchester City 2-0 on Saturday.

But it was Vinicius who opened the scoring for Spurs after he got on the end of Dele Alli's deflected pass and calmly slid the ball home.

His second goal owed much to Alli's unselfish play after the midfielder cut the ball back for Vinicius to tap in from close range following Tanguy Ndombele's burst forward.

Ludogorets struggled to get out of their own half and were unable to register a single shot in the first half, with goalkeeper Joe Hart touching the ball just seven times before the break.

Bale got himself into a good position after the interval, only to be denied by Iliev at the far post following Matt Doherty's knockdown.

Iliev was embarrassed after 63 minutes, though, when Winks collected the ball from a throw-in on the left flank and remarkably picked out the top-right corner, via the crossbar, with the Ludogorets keeper off his line.

Alli and Vinicius were both involved again when Spurs notched a fourth, Moura the beneficiary as some clever link-up play allowed him to fire home.

Iliev at least partially redeemed himself late on when he saved from substitute Harvey White from close range, but Tottenham eased to another three points.
 

What does it mean? Spurs on brink of last 32

An emphatic win for a much-changed team would have done plenty for the confidence levels of Tottenham's squad players ahead of a more testing run of games.

Ludogorets could not lay a glove on the Premier League side. Tottenham had 24 shots, eight on target, with their opponents unable to register a solitary effort. Mourinho's men dominated 61.1 per cent of the possession and won 50 duels to Ludogorets' 38.

The result leaves Tottenham requiring just one point against LASK next week to progress to the last 32 and looking good value to go deep in the Europa League.

Vicious finishing from Vinicius

With in-form duo Harry Kane and Son Heung-min both rested by Mourinho for this encounter, the goalscoring burden fell largely on Vinicius, who rose to the challenge with two ruthless strikes.

Vinicius' brace and the assist for Moura means he has had a hand in five goals in four Europa League games for Tottenham (two goals, three assists) and shows he can be reliable back-up option.

Alli gives reminder of his ability 

Spurs have vastly improved under Mourinho but one figure who has appeared distant from that success is Alli, who is in danger of becoming a forgotten man.

However, he did not sulk in a rare appearance here, delivering a professional display as he was involved in the build-up to three of Tottenham's goals. He had six touches in the penalty area to underline his attacking intent, and his selfless pass for the second goal would have met Mourinho's approval.

Key Opta Facts

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- Tottenham have won all three games against Bulgarian opposition in Europe. Only against Norwegian sides do Spurs have a better 100 per cent record in all European competition (winning four out of four).
- Spurs have won five consecutive matches in all competitions for the first time since November 2018 under Mauricio Pochettino (a run of six), whilst the Lilywhites have kept three consecutive clean sheets for the first time since April 2019.
- Winks' goal for Tottenham came from a distance of 53.7 yards. Only two goals have been scored from further out in the Europa League since the competition was rebranded in 2009-10; Jordi Gomez for Omonia Nicosia against PSV (61.2 yards) and Kemar Roofe for Rangers against Standard Liege (55.4 yards), both in October of this year.
- Aged just 16 years and 247 days old, Dane Scarlett became Tottenham's youngest ever player in major European competition.

What's next?

Tottenham are back in Premier League action on Sunday when Mourinho faces former club Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. Ludogorets host Botev Vratsa on the same day.

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