Ruthless Spurs destroy Donny
Free-scoring Tottenham continue impressive form
By Jamie Casey. Last Updated: August 26, 2009 11:10pm
Crouch: First goal
Tottenham continued their impressive start to the campaign with a comprehensive 5-1 victory over Doncaster in the Carling Cup second round.
The fixture was a chance for some of boss Harry Redknapp's fringe players to impress and they duly obliged, none more so than Peter Crouch who grabbed his first goal for the club.
Tom Huddlestone opened the scoring on nine minutes as he slotted home from 18 yards before Jamie O'Hara added a second just two minutes later.
Crouch headed Spurs into a three-goal lead on 37 minutes as the away side were cruising at the break.
Winger David Bentley ensured Spurs picked up where they left off at the beginning of the second half as he made it four on 52 minutes.
A handball by Kevin-Prince Boateng gifted Doncaster a penalty which was duly dispatched by Martin Woods on 61 minutes offering the home side a consolation.
However, eight minutes later the four-goal lead was restored as Roman Pavlyuchenko finished well from 18 yards to reaffirm the away side's dominance.
Tottenham held out until the final whistle to continue their free-scoring form in what was their second 5-1 win away from home this season.
Redknapp's tinkering meant that there was no place in the squad for Robbie Keane and Ledley King, who were rested, and Jermain Defoe, who was on the bench, while the likes of Bentley and Pavlyuchenko were eager to play for their futures, be they at White Hart Lane or elsewhere, ahead of next summer's World Cup.
But it was Doncaster who settled the quicker of the two sides and they could have been two goals up inside the opening five minutes were it not for the brilliance of Carlo Cudicini.
The Italian, one of just four players to retain his place from Sunday' game, was at his best with just over a minute gone as he somehow clawed away James Hayter's volley, before he was called into action again to divert John Oster's low drive round the post.
But fortune was not to favour Doncaster and from being in a position where they could have been two ahead, they quickly found themselves two down as Spurs struck twice in as many minutes.
The first goal came nine minutes in.
There seemed to be little danger when Rovers defender Adam Lockwood collected the ball in his own half but his square pass sold Sam Hird short, allowing Huddlestone to nip in and rob the defender of possession before coolly slotting home.
With Doncaster stunned, O'Hara quickly drove home a second after 11 minutes, with his crisp drive from the edge of the area leaving Ben Smith with no chance after Bentley's cut-back.
The game then reverted to how it had been in the early exchanges, with Cudicini again excelling as he parried Oster's fizzing half-volley.
But with Doncaster's early fire now starting to die out, it did not take too long for another goal to arrive with Crouch nodding home Bentley's wicked corner eight minutes before the break.
With confidence sky high, O'Hara nearly added a fourth before half-time as he saw his stinging 30-yard volley corner scrape just wide.
The procession continued into the second half as Bentley made it four seven minutes after the restart with his first goal since his memorable volley against Arsenal in October last year.
This one was less spectacular but equally comprehensive as he rammed home from just inside the area after Crouch had flicked Giovani's cross into his path.
The goal sparked a brief Doncaster revival and they soon had reward for their industry if not their finishing as Woods slotted home a 61st-minute penalty after a handball from Prince-Boateng, who had barely been on the field a minute, while Guy also hit a post with a thumping effort.
But Prince-Boateng quickly redeemed himself eight minutes later, carving the Doncaster defence open with a through-ball that Pavlyuchenko slotted beyond Smith.
It opened the Russia international's account for the season and provided Redknapp with a timely reminder of his abilities the day after he had admitted he may have to leave the club in search of more regular football.
Bentley, another keen to show what he can do, nearly wrapped things up with a flashing drive that west just over, while Rovers again hit the woodwork, this time through Byron Webster.