Can Tottenham's ambitious young squad emerge as genuine title contenders. [Reuters]

Andre Villas-Boas had labelled Tottenham Hotspurs' game against Aston Villa 'impossible' after the Capital One Cup fixture came just 48 hours after a hard fought win over Cardiff City in the Premier League on Sunday.

He made eight changes from the side that defeated the newly-promoted Welsh club but was concerned that Villa would be able to field their strongest side and simply have too much for his jaded squad.

Yet this was simply not the case as Spurs ran riot in the second half to complete an impressive 4-0 win that proved that this squad is now full of talent. Last season the club were forced to rely too often on the excellence of Gareth Bale, but with the sale of the Welsh winger, Villas-Boas was able to sign several players to create a squad overflowing with quality.

Jermain Defoe, who shouldered much of the goal scoring burden last season as Emmanuel Adebayor struggled in front of goal, now finds himself mainly used in cup competitions but he once again reminded his manager of his talent as he fired a brace to take his season tally to six goals in six appearances.

Summer signings Paulinho and Nacer Chadli were also on target against Villa as Villas-Boas handed first starts to record signing Erik Lamela and Vlad Chirches. There was also a first appearance for former Manchester United defender Zeki Fryers who may well end up challenging Danny Rose for a regular berth at left-back.

Lewis Holtby was also handed a rare start and would suitably impress, which further highlighted the sheer depth that Villas-Boas has in reserve, especially across the midfield where there are an array of options.

Few squads in the Premier League can boast such a rich source of talent across the middle of the park. In central positions alone the Portuguese boss can choose from Paulinho, Mousa Dembele, Etienne Capoue, Christian Eriksen, Sandro, Paulinho, Holtby and Gylfi Sugurdsson.

Villas-Boas will play down his ambitions publically this season but in his own quiet moments of reflection, he must genuinely feel he has a squad capable of launching an assault on all fronts. He will want to achieve a top four finish but this group of players may well be targeting a greater prize.

The former Chelsea boss was never given a fair crack at Stamford Bridge but he has the full support of his players, the chairman and most importantly the supporters. "We had a great team out there but most of all a great team spirit and motivation," he would say after the Villa performance. "I think the team is playing very well, we have great strength in the squad but I think above all, great team spirit and ambition to do well."

Ambition is key. Tottenham currently sit join top of the Premier League after winning four of their opening five games. They suffered a 1-0 defeat to bitter rivals Arsenal, who also have 12 points, but there is a feeling that Spurs have greater depth in their squad and are better placed to deal with injuries and suspensions once the crunch fixtures begin to come thick and fast.

Should this young and determined squad fulfil their potential then there is no telling how far they can go. If Villas-Boas can keep his players motivated, and beyond all else, believing in themselves, then come the end of the season they just might be in the hunt for a first league title since 1961.