Tottenham player ratings v Aston Villa: Rested stars stand out as Pochettino rotation justified

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Harry Kane scored both goals as Tottenham Hotspur beat Aston Villa 2-0 this afternoon to close to within two points of Leicester City at the top of the table.

The Premier League’s basement side withstood 45 minutes of Spurs pressure before Kane broke the deadlock in first-half stoppage time from Dele Alli’s quickly-taken free-kick.

Kane bagged his 19th league goal of the season a few minutes after the restart to secure Tottenham an important win after their midweek thumping by Borussia Dortmund.

Here, CaughtOffside rates how Mauricio Pochettino’s title chasers performed at Villa Park…

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GK: Hugo Lloris – 6/10

Was a spectator for most of the game aside from a decent-first half stop from Rudy Gestede.

RB: Kyle Walker – 8/10

Absolutely dominated his flank with his power and pace. Supplied Lamela with a good chance from which he hit the post, and could have scored himself with a shot well held by Brad Guzan.

Kyle Walker Tottenham v Aston Villa

CB: Toby Alderweireld – 7/10

A 10th league clean sheet of the season for the Belgian, who coped well with Gestede in the air.

CB: Kevin Wimmer – 6/10

The ideal opponent after a tricky time in Dortmund. A solid performance with some good clearances.

LB: Danny Rose – 7/10

Not as great of an attacking threat as Walker, but he plays with such tenacity and that it is easy to see how he could force his way into England’s Euro 2016 squad. Survived an injury scare.

CM: Eric Dier – 6/10

One of the easier afternoons that Dier will have shielding the Spurs defence. Any attacking threat that Villa had came from the flanks, and the Englishman was able to go about his business quietly.

CM: Mousa Dembele – 7/10

A class act and strong presence on the ball throughout. He appeared to sit a little deeper than usual to give Alli more attacking freedom, and that worked brilliantly to Tottenham’s benefit.

AMR: Erik Lamela – 7/10

Very industrious performance from the Argentine and he was involved in a lot of good attacking things that Tottenham did. Denied a fourth league goal of the season by a brilliant Guzan save.

AMC: Dele Alli – 8/10

Suspended for Europa League duty, Alli returned refreshed and provided Kane with both of his goals – an intelligent lofted pass from a quickly-taken free-kick, and a cross after a lovely Spurs move.

Dele Alli Tottenham v Aston Villa

AML: Christian Eriksen – 6/10

Had his fair share of shots but could not get the better of Guzan. Not quite as sharp as usual, which could be attributed to the fact that he played 65 minutes against Borussia Dortmund in midweek.

ST: Harry Kane – 9/10

Pochettino’s decision to rest the striker against Dortmund was justified as he fired them to three vital Premier League points. Perhaps could have had four or five if he made the most of his chances.

Substitutes

Tom Carroll – 6/10

Tottenham’s most used Premier League substitute had a few nice touches in his 15-minute cameo. Neither of the other players to come off the bench had enough time to make an impact.

Ryan Mason – N/a

Nacer Chadli – N/a

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