Kane double sees Tottenham past Brighton in FA Cup
LONDON (REUTERS) - Harry Kane looked close to his best with a double as Tottenham Hotspur reached the FA Cup fifth round thanks to an impressive 3-1 victory over Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday (Feb 5).
The England captain curled in a superb opener with his right foot after 13 minutes and slid in again to quell a Brighton fightback in the 66th minute of an entertaining tie.
Tottenham's second goal in the 24th minute came after a marauding run down the right by Emerson Royal who then appeared to have scored a wonder goal from an impossible angle, although it was credited as a Solly March own goal.
Brighton, who were second-best before halftime against a vibrant home side, got back into the game just past the hour thanks to Yves Bissouma's deflected shot.
Kane ensured Tottenham's passage though after the ball broke clear following a superb run by Son Heung-min on his return to the side after injury.
Tottenham, who were beaten by Chelsea in the League Cup semi-final, gave late substitute appearances to new signings Rodrigo Bentancur and Dejan Kulusevski.
Kane took a long time to get anywhere near his best level this season after a potential move to Manchester City in the summer failed to materialise.
But since Antonio Conte arrived to take charge in November, the striker has looked re-energised.
His display provided the thrust for a dazzling first-half by Tottenham who could have been further ahead than two goals.
"We played really well. We started on the front-foot and missed a bit of momentum in the second half but controlled the game after our third goal," said Kane, who has scored 21 goals for club and country this season.
"I was delighted to see that first goal go in. I'm happy to be on the scoresheet. It was unbelievable by Sonny (for the second goal). He has lots of pace and created a big chance and I'm just happy I was able to sneak it home."
As good as Kane's first goal was, Tottenham's second was more spectacular, even if Royal was denied the credit.
The right back went on a long-busting run down the wing but appeared to have run out of options.
Instead, he took aim with a cross-shot and the ball took a freakish nick off March which sent the ball in a weird trajectory over Brighton keeper Robert Sanchez and in.
Brighton did improve after the break but it was a disappointing exit for Graham Potter's side.
"I have no complaints, we just weren't at our level. You can't give away three goals and expect to win the game," Potter said.
"We wanted to go through but we have played a really good opponent with really good players."