In an absolutely stunning performance, Tottenham Hotspur ran riot on Newcastle United on Saturday evening, seriously crippling the Magpies' chances of finishing in European places. Less than a week after a difficult 0-0 draw at Anfield and in the midst of controversy surrounding Harry Redknapp's tax evasion case and status as potentially the next England manager, Spurs rose to the occasion and played like they had no distractions, thumping Newcastle 5-0.
Emmanuel Adebayor was unquestionably the star of the match, providing four assists in the first half and scoring on a brilliant volley in the second half. Louis Saha made his full debut for Spurs and was brilliant as well, finishing off two of Adebayor's assist and setting up Ade's goal. The two formed an incredible partnership and looked like they had been playing together for the better part of a decade.
Spurs got off to a perfect start with a fourth minute goal. As fantastic as the start was, no one could have guessed at the time what was about to transpire, but it was simply a sign of what was to come for the entirety of the match. Adebayor did almost all of the work with a great run down the right side before passing to Gareth Bale, who returned the ball with a one-touch pass. Ade hit a low ball across the face of goal from the byline and Benoit Assou-Ekotto, making a late run from his left back position, got onto it and smashed into the roof of the net.
They found their second just two minutes later, and in similar fashion. Once again, Adebayor ripped apart the Newcastle defense on the right, beating Fabricio Coloccini before playing a ball across the box for Saha, who scored his first goal in a Spurs shirt to make it 2-0 after just six minutes.
Niko Kranjcar, starting again in place of Aaron Lennon, got off to an extremely energetic start and put in another excellent performance. He would eventually score, but his first great opportunity came on the 16th minute, when Gareth Bale set up a chance. The Welshman's cross into the box was deflected out and sat up perfectly for Kranjcar at the edge of the box, but he blasted just over.
Tottenham scored their third just four minutes after that, with Adebayor and Saha combining for a second time. Newcastle right back Danny Simpson was the one abused this time, as Luka Modric drifted outside and played in a great low cross. Adebayor touched that cross into the path of Saha, who smashed it into the back of the net to make it 3-0.
Demba Ba nearly got his team back into the game in the 25th minute with an absolutely brilliant free kick. Brad Friedel just barely got across his goal to get a finger to it and tip it wide, but the referee didn't see Friedel's save and granted a goal kick.
An incredible fourth Spurs goal and fourth Adebayor assist would come in the 33rd minute. Adebayor tried to shoot this time and had a short-range effort saved by Tim Krul, but jumped on the rebound and touched it wide to Kranjcar, who had a simple finish.
Spurs spent much of the second half keeping the ball and were less rampant in attack. On one occasion, in the 58th minute, they had a 30-plus pass move that lasted more than a minute, ending in an Adebayor lay-off to Kranjcar, who got there just a half step too late and couldn't get a shot on target.
The fifth goal came in the 64th minute, and it was a much deserved one for Emmanuel Adebayor. Assou-Ekotto provided the setup with a great cross towards the back post that was met by Saha, who nodded down for Adebayor. He hit a wonderful volley into the back of the net, giving him a goal and four assists on the day and completing the scoring.
This win is the biggest of the season for Spurs, and also the heaviest of the season for Newcastle. These games against Liverpool and Tottenham were just the first two of a gauntlet of games that features matchups against Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United before the end of March.