Tottenham Hotspur paid a frantic farewell to their temporary home Wembley Stadium as they won a nine-goal thriller against Leicester City on the final day of the Premier League season.
After Jamie Vardy had given the Foxes an early lead – going on to notch his own double – Spurs came from 3-1 down shortly after the break, as both Vardy and Kane hit form ahead of next month’s World Cup in Russia, which will be music to Gareth Southgate’s ears.
In total, there were 30 shots during a pulsating encounter in North London, as both sides threw caution to the wind in what will go down as an all-time classic.
It took just four minutes for the Foxes to draw first blood of a frantic opening period in North London. From a Riyad Mahrez free-kick from the left, the Algerian found Vardy unmarked in the area, leaving the England man to glance home to give Claude Puel’s men an early lead.
In what became a battle of the England forwards with the World Cup just over a month away in Russia, Kane they brought about his own riposte three minutes later after the Spurs striker surged forward from wide on the right after a smart ball from Lucas Moura. Kane’s shot was saved by Eldin Jakupovic, but the Leicester stopper could only parry into the net.
Moura was again involved on a rare start for Spurs but was denied a second assist in minutes after Wes Morgan able was to head clear, before Kyle Walker-Pieters was the creator this time for the advanced Toby Alderweireld whose strike was well saved by Jakupovic.
However, rather against the run of play, Mahrez helped Leicester gain the upper hand once more. After a scrappy build up, the ball fell to the Algerian who took a touch a crashed the ball low into the Spurs net.
Hugo Lloris then prevented the visitors opening up a decent cushion, with the Frenchman forced into a full-stretch save to tip the ball over the bar from Demarai Gray’s rasping drive after a Vardy lay-off.
After a flurry of early goals, the game them became congested, however in a half of ebb and flow, Harry Maguire was on hand to deny Kane a second of the game after international team-mates went head to head from close range, only for the Leicester defender to to make a perfectly timed slide tackle to deny Kane.
The visitors kept Spurs at bay to half-time as the referee blew the whistle for the break to bring to an end a pulsating opening 45 minutes with Leicester leading.
In Spurs’ final game at Wembley as their temporary home before moving into their new residences later this year, the famous arch had seen a thrilling first half, but would the cavalier approach from both sides continue after the break? In short, yes.
After Kelechi Iheanacho had extended the Foxes’ advantage with a long-range screamer two minutes after the break, Lamela opened his own account after a slick move saw the lively Walker-Pieters whip a low cross to find the Argentinian from close-range as the goal-fest continued.
The hosts then drew level after Lamela’s shot was re-directed by Christian Fuchs into his own net, before a rejuvenated Lilywhites scored their third in a row as Lamela, having been denied his second, then did grab a double on the hour mark.
Leicester however refused to go quietly in an increasingly bizarre game. Lloris pulled off a number of stops to keep the lead intact, but could do nothing to prevent Vardy’s second – running inside in customary fashion to hammer the ball into the net.
Maguire then spurned a glorious chance when found in space at the back post but could not direct his effort on target, as the ball flew inches wide.
But just two minutes after Vardy had levelled, Kane was at it again as three separate players bagged their doubles. Taking a touch, Kane shied from the edge and area and curled a sumptuous effort into the far corner for the ninth goal of the afternoon.
The Tottenham Hotspur talisman could have had yet another hat-trick this season by was denied by further last-ditch heroics from Maguire in the Foxes’ defence.
Vardy then almost snatched a point late on, but could only drive his effort over the bar, as Spurs played out time to seal third spot and cap a final and remarkable afternoon in the Wembley sunshine.