Tottenham 3-0 Pacos de Ferreira: Harry Kane back to fire Spurs into Europa Conference League group stages

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 (Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)
(Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)

Harry Kane put his Manchester City transfer saga behind him on Thursday night as the striker fired Tottenham into the Europa Conference League group stages.

Spurs were down on aggregate heading into the second leg of their playoff qualifier against FC Pacos de Ferreira, having lost the first leg 1-0 in Portugal - but a first-half brace from Kane and a Giovani Lo Celso free-kick earned a 3-0 win on the night, and a 3-1 aggregate victory.

Nuno Espirito Santo had fielded a young starting XI that time out, but named Kane as captain for the second leg following the forward's failed push to join Man City.

Kane confirmed earlier this week that he will stay at Spurs this season - though beyond that is another matter - and the Spurs fans welcomed him back with open arms, cheering his name.

The England striker almost scored within the first 20 seconds, but was soon on the scoresheet to level the tie after good work down the left from Bryan Gil after a strong interception from Harry Kane.

Kane had his second before half-time: his shot was blocked by a defender, and Giovani Lo Celso pounced on the loose ball to tee up Kane for a tap-in to put Spurs 2-1 ahead on aggregate.

Spurs had chances after the break to seal the tie with Gil and Lo Celso going close, and the latter saw a free-kick fly in to give Nuno’s side breathing space.

Kane departed soon after to a standing ovation, and Spurs comfortably saw out the closing stages to ease into the group stages of the Europa Conference League.

The result was important for Spurs given they will now be looking at this competition as a realistic chance of silverware, while it was an important night for Kane and the fans to ease the tensions after a fraught summer.

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