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Tottenham Hotspur's Richarlison celebrates scoring their second goal with Sergio Reguilon during their friendly against Lion City Sailors FC at the National Stadium, Kallang, Singapore, on Wednesday. Image Credit: Reuters

Singapore: New Tottenham Hotspur manager Ange Postecoglou feels there is much to come from Richarlison in the upcoming season after the Brazilian netted three second-half goals to help his side beat local club Lion City Sailors 5-1 in a pre-season friendly at Singapore’s National Stadium on Wednesday.

The Sailors took a surprise lead through Shawal Anuar after 14 minutes but the Premier League side got back on level terms through a Harry Kane penalty with the final kick of the first half.

Richarlison came on at half-time and scored twice in the first eight minutes of the second half before completing his hat-trick in stoppage time after Giovani Lo Celso had netted Spurs’ fourth goal.

Richarlison scored only three goals for Spurs last season after his big money move from Everton but Postecoglou feels he can make a big contribution for the club when they begin the new campaign.

“I really like him (as a player). He’s got all the attributes that I look for in a striker in terms of how he’s got a really strong work ethic and he’s always in the right areas,” said the Spurs’ manager.

“I’ve really got a lot of time for him and he’s one of the players I’m really looking forward to working with. You try to picture your players playing the football you want to play and I certainly think he can.”


Tottenham were playing just the second pre-season game of their Asia-Pacific tour following the cancellation of a match against Leicester City in Bangkok on Sunday and Postecoglou opted for a strong starting line-up which dominated the opening half.

But against the run of play, the Sailors took the lead when a cross from the right by Maxime Lestienne was bundled in by Shawal at the far post.

Spurs turned up the pressure with James Maddison going close with a long-range effort which forced a fine diving save from Sailors goalkeeper Zharfan Rohaizad.

Son Heung-min headed home after 26 minutes but his effort was ruled out for offside while Pape Matar Sarr skimmed the crossbar with a volley.

However, Tottenham’s pressure finally told in first-half stoppage time when Sarr was brought down in the Sailors box and Kane stepped up to send Zharfan the wrong way from the penalty spot to level things up.

Postecoglou made 11 changes at half-time and his new line-up took the lead just three minutes after the restart.

Lo Celso’s effort deflected off a defender and the ball fell nicely for Richarlison to turn it into the net.

The Brazilian was again on target five minutes later when he pounced on a weak back-header to nod in his second of the game.

Not distracted

While the Tottenham striker was twice denied a hat-trick goal by the offside flag, his side managed to add a fourth goal in the 73rd minute when Lo Celso drove home a loose ball in the six-yard box.

And Richarlison’s persistence was finally rewarded in stoppage time when he burst through the centre of the Sailors’ defence and flicked in his third goal of the game to make it 5-1.

The Tottenham players appeared not to be distracted by the news earlier in the day that the club’s majority owner Joe Lewis had been indicted in a US court on insider training charges.

Tottenham declined to comment on the matter, saying it was not a club issue.

“It doesn’t affect me in terms of what I’m trying to do,” Postecoglou said after the game.