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WRITTEN BY SEAN COOK
English side Tottenham Hotspur secured a stunning 5-0 victory over Georgian side Dinamo Tbilisi in the Play-Off stage for this season’s UEFA Europa League. Goals from Londoner Andros Townsend, Roberto Soldado (x2), Danny Rose and Paulinho secured the first leg win for Spurs whom will face the Georgians again in one week’s time in the second leg.
The game was full of chances especially for the North London side. They began the game well as on the fourteenth minute mark, young Townsend (recently back from his loan with London side Queens Park Rangers) ran the length of the pitch to blast home a powerful strike into the net. The goals then continued on the stroke of halftime as Brazilian midfielder Paulinho (a recent Spurs signing) headed home the second from an Andros Townsend cross.
After a stern talk at Half-time from Portuguese boss Andre Villas-Boas, Spurs came out fresher. Despite leading at the interval, there were obvious cracks in an otherwise flawless Tottenham. Icelander Gylfi Sigurdsson failed to make an impact and when in dangerous positions, he didn’t manage to successfully finish his chances nor provide for other team-mates. However, the goals continued on the 58th minute. Spanish forward Roberto Soldado slotted home the ball after yet another cross from the young English winger Townsend to make it 3-0 to the North Londoners.
Doncaster born Danny Rose added to another jubilant night for Villas-Boas’ side. On the 64th minute on a warm night in Georgia, he curled home a phenomenal shot into the far corner to send Tottenham fans back home into further joy. The shot was particularly special and sparked memories of Rose’s former stunning moments including his past effort against London rivals Arsenal in 2011.
The game was rounded off nicely just 3 minutes later. Roberto Soldado secured his brace with a neat effort into the net after Belgian winger Nacer Chadli powered a cross to the former Valencia man. Tottenham were truly ruthless and took pressure off of the return fixture next Thursday as their aggregate lead enables a comfortable game just days before they face bitter rivals Arsenal in the North London Derby.