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Tottenham 3-1 West Ham: player ratings to the theme of photos of my cats in response to Kurt Zouma

Hey Kurt — we’re animal lovers here.

The pattern holds! Tottenham Hotspur won two consecutive matches for the first time in what has felt like an absolute age, defeating West Ham 3-1 on Sunday. In the process Spurs continued a similarly longstanding pattern of wins and losses that goes back a couple of months. The pattern itself is recursive and, frankly, rather elegant — W-L-W-L-W-L-W-L-L-W-L-W-L-W-L-W-W — but also means that if the pattern should hold would result in a loss to Newcastle after the international break. So in that sense, I’m okay with patterns ending and this feels like a great time to establish something new. Like, say, a winning streak.

Today’s theme is personal, and also a little bantery. As we all know by now, West Ham central defender Kurt Zouma was prosecuted on animal cruelty charges after a video emerged on social media of Zouma abusing his pet cat at his home. I haven’t watched the video — as a long time cat owner, I have no intention to, it’s apparently awful. Zouma is a Premier League pariah now — Spurs fans booed every time he touched the ball on Sunday, and in one of the more hilarious stories to emerge from this situation, Newcastle striker Chris Wood reportedly spent the entire Toon-West Ham match meowing at Zouma whenever he got close.

I’m a cat lover. I have owned cats all of my adult life and currently have... well, let’s just call it “several” at present. So for today’s theme, and in recognition as to how Son Heung-Min and Harry Kane batted him around the back line like a ball of string, I’m deciding to dedicate this article to posting photos of my cats, because Kurt Zouma is a cat-abusing jerk.

Here are your Tottenham Hotspur player ratings to the theme of photos of the George-Miller cats. Piss off, Kurt.

5 stars:

Meet Onia. [busts through door] “OH HEY YOU TALKIN’ KURT ZOUMA DISCOURSE?”

Son Heung-Min (Community — 4.5): There we go. Silenced the haters and blasted out of his recent slump with two goals, and also hit the post. Was also instrumental in Zouma’s own goal. We need to remember that it’s always (ALWAYS) best to let Sonny play through the fallow periods, because when he comes out of it he does stuff like this.

Harry Kane (Community — 4.5): Three assists on the day (if you count the Zouma own goal) and it was his passing that was on display on Sunday as opposed to his shooting. That said, he could’ve scored at least two if he’d not forgotten his shooting boots at home.

4.5 stars

Thea, waiting for that interminably long second half to end. She is quite nimble, Kurt Zouma probably couldn’t catch her.

Rodrigo Bentancur (Community — 4.5): Much better from Lolo after an uncharacteristically poor match against Brighton. Clearly relishes that deep lying playmaker role. That little mini-Cruyff turn move in his own box was incredible (if slightly terrifying).

Cuti Romero (Community — 4.5): Really, really good defensively. Kept Antonio quiet all match, played his way comfortably out of danger, and put in some crunching tackles. Please don’t get hurt in Argentina, Cuti.

4 stars:

This is Nyla, aka “Stupid McBlackbutt,” a very good girl who liked to dig in the trash for chicken bones and who sadly passed away a few years ago. She was a stray that was chased up a tree next to our house by a squirrel when she was a kitten, and decided to stay with us for the next 15 years. If she were here today, she’d hiss at Kurt Zouma.

Eric Dier (Community — 3.5): Solid outing, even with the headband that made him look from a distance a bit like Spurs Women wingback Ashleigh Neville.

Dejan Kulusevski (Community — 4.0): Works incredibly well with Kane and Doherty on that right side. Showed some creative range with a backheel that led to an earlyish chance and was a part of every great offensive move Spurs made in this match. He’s great, I love him.

Antonio Conte (Community — 4.5): The game plan is the game plan and Tottenham executed it well. Implementation of The Patterns™ was especially visible in and around Spurs’ box.

3.5 stars

Meet Am, also in the header photo. He is a good boy, loves stretches in the sunshine, but please do not pick him up as he says he is not a lap cat despite our insistence to the contrary. He isn’t mad at Kurt Zouma, just very disappointed.

Hugo Lloris (Community — 3.5): Didn’t have a ton to do. Let one (good) goal in and set up one of Spurs with a long kick that was flicked on to Son by Harry Kane.

Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (Community — 4.0): A good, if not particularly noteworthy performance. Straightforward midfield play, did find Kane in the second half for a chance Harry blew. He was fine.

Matt Doherty (Community — 3.5): Pretty good from Matt, who got forward into some dangerous positions several times and seemed to work well with Kulusevsky. A bit of a defensive liability, but then we kinda expect that; that’s why the back three exists.

3 stars:

This is Celia, another dearly departed extremely good girl. “He did WHAT to that poor kitty?”

Ben Davies (Community — 3.5): Nothing fancy, just a sneaky good solid defensive performance against what has proven to be a solid offensive team. Antonio got the better of him once, but just the once. Notable that West Ham preferred to attack down his flank.

2.5 stars

“Mr. Zouma, I’m going to have to ask you to exit your vehicle.”

Sergio Reguilon (Community — 3.0): Man, I dunno. Maybe could skirted into the 3 star category, but he was so frustrating to watch with the ball. Defended fine, but seemed to run out of ideas as soon as he got into the attacking third. Runs so fast, his legs outpace his brain and it’s maddening.

2 stars:

Noah says: “Get f—ked, Kurt.”

Kurt Zouma (Community — n/a): This guy sucks and scored an own goal for our team. Thanks for the goal Kurt, now please don’t go anywhere near a cat ever again.

1 star

This is Noah on catnip. Any questions?

No Tottenham Hotspur players are as bad as Kurt Zouma.

Tom & Jerry Memorial Non-Rating

Steven Bergwijn, Emerson Royal, Lucas Moura