Tottenham 2-0 Everton: Player ratings as Kane & Hojbjerg sink the Toffees

Harry Kane marked his 400th appearance for Tottenham with a goal against Everton
Harry Kane marked his 400th appearance for Tottenham with a goal against Everton / Julian Finney/GettyImages

Second-half goals from Harry Kane and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg earned Tottenham a 2-0 win at home Everton on Saturday evening.

Frank Lampard's side arrived in north London with the joint-best defensive record in the Premier League. The visitors firmly bolted the backdoor to desperately preserve that status against an early storm from the hosts in the opening ten minutes.

The Toffees crept forward as the game progressed, ensuring that Antonio Conte's prediction of a match that 'won't be easy' for Spurs was fulfilled.

In a bid to overwhelm the visiting rearguard action, Spurs pressed aggressively, committing plenty of white shirts forward when they wrestled back possession. However, the front-foot approach provided space behind the hosts for Everton to break into.

A turnover in midfield gave Demarai Gray the first of two inviting openings which Everton squandered in the first half. Bursting beyond the covering Rodrigo Bentancur, Gray ballooned an effort from close range over the crossbar.

Miscommunication between Hojbjerg and Cristian Romero unlocked another corridor into the box for a blue shirt to surge into. Andre Onana took advantage of the mixup but again failed to test Hugo Lloris.

An injury to Richarlison shortly after the interval forced Spurs into a reshuffle. Bentancur was unshackled in midfield, sparking a jolt of urgency which coursed throughout the side.

The volume and threat of Tottenham's balls into the box increased. Matt Doherty diverted one such delivery on target which Jordan Pickford spilt to the feet of Kane. In a bid to rectify his error, Everton's keeper felled his fellow England international, conceding a spot-kick which Kane emphatically converted.

With an extra body in midfield - and a lead to rest on - Spurs entirely snuffed out Everton's attacking transitions, denying the visitors a single shot in the second half.

Hojbjerg sealed Tottenham's tenth consecutive home victory across all competitions in the final five minutes. Kane held the ball up on the halfway line, picking out Bentancur's lung-bursting run beyond him. The indefatigable Uruguayan teed up his fellow midfielder, who had the freedom to storm forward and stuff Tottenham's second into the corner with Yves Bissouma sweeping behind them both.

Tottenham vs Everton player ratings - Premier League

1. Tottenham (3-4-3)

GK: Hugo Lloris - 5/10 - Spared making a number of saves by Everton's wayward finishing.

CB: Cristian Romero - 6/10 - If Davies was willing to venture up the pitch in possession, Romero eagerly leapt forward to apply pressure off the ball.

CB: Eric Dier - 6/10 - Bullied Neal Maupay but lacked urgency when he started Tottenham's buildups.

CB: Ben Davies - 5/10 - Caught out of position on occasion when he roamed forward, trying to overload the wide areas.

RWB: Matt Doherty - 7/10 - Grew into the game after a quiet first half, launching Tottenham's thrusts down the right.

CM: Rodrigo Bentancur - 8/10 - Invariably involved in whatever Tottenham were constructing or snuffing out.

CM: Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg - 6/10 - Had his blushes spared by Onana's poor finishing before showing the midfielder how to convert in the second half.

LWB: Ivan Perisic - 6/10 - Curled in a couple of inviting crosses, holding his width on the left.

RW: Richarlison - N/A - Had his reunion with Everton cut short by injury.

ST: Harry Kane - 8/10 - On his 400th Spurs appearance, Kane doggedly tried to eke out space away from three central defenders very much interested in his movement, sharply winning the spot-kick he converted.

LW: Son Heung-min - 5/10 - Scarcely afforded any open space to break into.

SUB: Yves Bissouma (52' for Richarlison) - 7/10 - Improved the performances of those around him while bringing a bit of steel to midfield.

SUB: Djed Spence (90+3' for Doherty) - N/A

SUB: Oliver Skipp (90+4' for Bentancur) - N/A

SUB: Lucas Moura (90+4' for Kane) - N/A

Manager: Antonio Conte - 7/10 - Instigated the renewed urgency which knocked Spurs out of their stupor with his substitution.

2. Everton (3-5-2)

Jordan Pickford has made more saves than any other Premier League goalkeeper this season / DANIEL LEAL/GettyImages

GK: Jordan Pickford - 4/10 - Offered a hand of apology after gifting Spurs their lead. Rebuffed his hosts on a number of occasions otherwise.

CB: James Tarkowski - 7/10 - Possessed an uncanny ability to repeatedly manoeuvre his significant frame in front of the ball.

CB: Conor Coady - 6/10 - Back in his comfort zone of anchoring a back-three.

CB: Vitaliy Mykolenko - 6/10 - Kept a close eye on Richarlison while they shared the pitch, closing down the half-space.

RWB: Seamus Coleman - 5/10 - The first to make way as Everton pushed for an equaliser.

CM: Alex Iwobi - 6/10 - Drifted wide on the right to offer himself as a passing option around Tottenham's squeeze.

CM: Idrissa Gueye - 6/10 - Shuttling laterally in midfield, trying to plug any gaps in the wall of royal blue.

CM: Andre Onana - 6/10 - Ate up the ground when he was allowed to break into his loping stride but did waste a clear first-half opening.

LWB: Dwight McNeil - 6/10 - Quick to drop alongside Mykolenko, forming a flat back-five off the ball.

ST: Demarai Gray - 4/10 - Squandered a golden sight of goal, getting caught out by a rare bobble on a Premier League pitch.

ST: Neal Maupay - 4/10 - Struggled against Tottenham's towering back-three, trying to control a ball aimed at his ears.

SUB: Dominic Calvert-Lewin (67' for Maupay) - 5/10

SUB: James Garner (67' for Coleman) - 5/10

SUB: Salomon Rondon (81' for Gueye) - N/A

Manager: Frank Lampard - 5/10 - Set his team up well to soak up pressure and strike on the counter but couldn't counteract Tottenham's shift after seeing his side squander their chances.

Player of the Match - Harry Kane