Tottenham’s bright start under Ange Postecoglou continued as James Maddison and Dejan Kulusevski struck in a 2-0 win at Bournemouth to go top of the Premier League on Saturday.
Postecoglou’s men have so far shrugged off the departure of the club’s all-time record goalscorer Harry Kane to Bayern Munich with new signing Maddison at the heart of most of their good work.
The England international’s first Tottenham goal on 17 minutes was just reward for the visitor’s dominance of the first half.
But Bournemouth looked the more likely to score in the second period before Kulusevski steered Destiny Udogie’s cross into the far corner just after the hour mark.
Maddison had been a doubt after leaving the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium after last weekend’s 2-0 win over Manchester United in a protective boot.
But the £40 million ($50 million) signing from Leicester was passed fit and is already appearing a bargain as he thrives in Postecoglou’s system.
However, he was fortunate for his goal as scuffed finish from Pape Sarr’s defence-splitting pass did enough to wrong-foot Neto in the Bournemouth goal.
As Maddison shines, Richarlison is struggling to fill the boots of Kane. The Brazilian striker had another frustrating afternoon before being replaced after an hour.
Richarlison should have doubled Tottenham’s advantage before the break when he tried to cut inside when clean through, allowing Lloyd Kelly to get just enough of a touch with a last-ditch tackle to divert the ball to safety.
Spurs could have paid for their failure to put the game to bed as Bournemouth started brightly after the break.
Antoine Semenyo came closest to an equaliser with a curling effort from outside the box that hit the side-netting.
Instead it was Tottenham who got the all-important second goal thanks to another fresh face making a strong start to the new season.
Udogie was signed last summer when Italian coach Antonio Conte and sporting director Fabio Paratici were at the club but was then loaned back to Udinese for the 2022/23 season.
The left-back could turn out to be one of the few positive legacies of the Conte and Paratici era for Spurs.
Udogie surged forward, exchanging a one-two with Son Heung-min, before pulling the ball back for Kulusevski to finish.
Victory takes Spurs a point clear of Arsenal, Brighton and Manchester City at the top of the table, having played one game more.
Arsenal can move back above their north London rivals when they host Fulham later looking to maintain their 100 percent start to the new season.
Manchester United are also in action at Old Trafford as they seek a response to a sluggish start to the season.