EPL Table: 2016 Top Scorers, Standings After Post-Week 31 Premier League Scores

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistMarch 20, 2016

Tottenham’s Harry Kane applauds after the English Premier League soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and Bournemouth at White Hart Lane in London, Sunday March 20, 2016. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland)
Tim Ireland/Associated Press

Harry Kane bagged a brace at home to Bournemouth to open up daylight at the top of the Premier League top scorers standings on Sunday.

The Tottenham Hotspur man scored his 20th and 21st goals of the season as the Lilywhites dispatched the Cherries 3-0, putting him ahead of Leicester City's Jamie Vardy.

Jermain Defoe also added to his tally in the Tyne-Wear derby as Sunderland drew 1-1 with Newcastle United.

Here is a look at how the race for the golden boot is shaping up and the latest standings after Manchester United beat Manchester City 1-0 and Southampton came from behind to beat Liverpool 3-2:

Premier League Week 31: Sunday's Results
Tottenham Hotspur3-0Bournemouth
Newcastle United1-1Sunderland
Manchester City0-1Manchester United
BBC Sport
EPL Top Goalscorers
1Harry KaneTottenham Hotspur21
2Jamie VardyLeicester City19
3Romelu LukakuEverton18
4Riyad MahrezLeicester City16
5Sergio AgueroManchester City16
6Odion IghaloWatford14
7Olivier GiroudArsenal12
8Jermain DefoeSunderland12
9Diego CostaChelsea11
10Marko ArnautovicStoke City10
BBC Sport
Updated Standings
1Leicester City31199354312366
2Tottenham Hotspur311710456243261
4Manchester City30156952322051
5West Ham United301311647351250
6Manchester United30148838271150
8Stoke City31137113437-346
11West Bromwich Albion30109113037-739
15Swansea City3199133140-936
16Crystal Palace3096153240-833
17Norwich City3177173254-2228
19Newcastle United3067172955-2625
20Aston Villa3137212258-3616

Harry Kane, 21 Goals

Kane scored twice in his last outing against Aston Villa, and it took him just 44 seconds to find the net against Bournemouth, as he turned home Kyle Walker's low cross from the right at the near post.

Bleacher Report UK summarised the reaction on social media:

B/R Football @brfootball

Harry Kane 44 Seconds Goal ⚽️ Scenes? More like #Memes https://t.co/m3uiSF15WY

Squawka Football hailed his incredible campaign, which comes off the back of an outstanding breakout year:

Squawka Football @Squawka

MILESTONE: Harry Kane is the first player to reach 20 Premier League goals this season. He's no one-season wonder! https://t.co/EBtRPM5CCp

A quarter of an hour into the game, Kane had his second, this time racing onto Dele Alli's exquisite slide-rule pass before finishing into the bottom corner, per the Premier League:

As Match of the Day host Gary Lineker noted, the brace—which helped Tottenham cut the gap at the top of the league back to five points after Leicester's win on Saturday—signified the title race is shaping up to be a straight fight between Spurs and the Foxes:

Gary Lineker @GaryLineker

2 goals already for Harry Kane. Really starting to look like a two-horse race between Leicester and Spurs. How the hell did that happen?

Zonal Marking's Michael Cox is impressed with the 22-year-old:

Michael Cox @Zonal_Marking

20+ goals in first two (complete) PL seasons is very very rare. Top stuff from Kane. Has improved all-round game since last year too.

Indeed, as BBC Sport noted, only a few select English strikers have managed to score 20 or more Premier League goals in back-to-back seasons—Andy Cole, Les Ferdinand, Robbie Fowler and Alan Shearer.

Vardy looks likely to also surpass the 20-goal mark but last found the net on Valentine's Day, so unless he can rediscover the goalscoring touch he enjoyed earlier in the season, Kane may well romp home to the golden boot.

The Leicester man is still playing well, though, getting three assists in the five matches since then, so the Premier League title may be a different story.

Jermain Defoe, 12 Goals

After scoring a sensational volley that decided the north east derby at a similar stage of the season last year, Defoe once again led the line for the Black Cats on Sunday as their primary goalscoring threat.

Yet again, he scored. After blasting a wild shot over the bar and hitting the side netting from close range, Defoe found the net when he volleyed in through a crowd of bodies after Chancel Mbemba failed to get any distance on a headed clearance.

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - MARCH 20:   Jermain Defoe of Sunderland (2L) scores their first goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Newcastle United and Sunderland at St James' Park on March 20, 2016 in Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Stu Forster/Getty Images

Squawka Football hailed his outstanding form since the turn of the year, while WhoScored.com's Ben McAleer noted his contributions often come away from home:

Squawka Football @Squawka

Jermain Defoe has now scored 8 Premier League goals in 2016, only Sergio Agüero has scored more (9). Top form. https://t.co/bW0GYJ2kdE

Ben McAleer @BenMcAleer1

9 goals in 13 away league appearances for Defoe this season now. Goalscoring record away from home is superb.

Former Newcastle and Sunderland defender Steven Caldwell believes Defoe deserves a call-up from England manager Roy Hodgson this summer:

Steven Caldwell @stevocaldwell

If England need a goal, there is nobody better than Defoe! Has been to the big occasion before too. https://t.co/kr0uAaKlgZ

Along with Kane, the 33-year-old is one of the most in-form English strikers in the Premier League right now.

While he probably won't become a surprise call-up to the Three Lions squad this summer—his form did not earn him one for the upcoming international break even with Wayne Rooney sidelined—he remains a natural predator in the area and a clinical finisher.

That is something Sunderland's rivals Norwich City and Newcastle United have lacked this season, and while they may have only got a point on Sunday, Defoe's goals could keep the Black Cats up.