Tottenham Hotspur vs Real Madrid : 5 Talking Points Of The Match
Here are five talking points from Tottenham’s 3-1 Champions League victory against Real Madrid.
1.An aggressive Spurs is the best Spurs :
There are few more impressive sights than Tottenham Hotspur in full-on bloodhound mode, sniffing down the ball all over the pitch and not giving the opposition a split-second to think.
Of all of the incarnations of Mauricio Pochettino’s Spurs side, the aggressive, pressing version is the one that sits closest to his own philosophy. When they pull it off, they’re like a pack of animals.
Harry Kane leads it from the front, harassing the defenders on the ball before wave after wave of white shirts join him in attacking the next man and then the next.
Even Mousa Dembele came off the bench in the second half like a man possessed, hacking at anything and everyone in his attempts to win back the ball.
No team in the world likes to play against it and now one of the sport’s best has succumbed to it.
It can’t be employed in every match otherwise the players would be drained by the end of the season, but when it can be used, particularly against big opposition, it’s a sight to behold.
2.Dele announced himself on the world stage
Dele Alli has been waiting for this match all season, he’s admitted as much. He even went to the Bernabeu despite his suspension, just to be a part of the atmosphere.
He made up for lost time at Wembley against Ronaldo and co. Real just couldn’t live with him. His movement with and without the ball was fantastic and he pulled the Spanish giants’ midfielders and defenders all over the place, causing havoc wherever he roamed.
The 21-year-old’s sliding finish for his first goal showcased that movement and while his second was a tad fortunate it was exactly what he deserved. He could have even had a hat-trick had he headed home Trippier’s cross in the second half.
3.Trippier’s titanic display :
All the talk pre-match across social media was about Kieran Trippier being torn apart by Ronaldo and Marcelo. How could Pochettino not pick Serge Aurier for such a big match?
Trippier answered his critics and then some, putting in probably his best performance in a Tottenham shirt since he joined from Burnley.
Not only was he brilliant at the back but it was the Spurs right-back who caused the problems for Marcelo in the Madrid half.
This was a fitter, attacking Trippier, not the rusty Trippier still recovering after his ankle injury the week before the season started.
When the England right-back gets into attacking positions he’s one of the best in the Premier League at delivering crosses.
4.Winks does it again :
As we’re all struggling with words to describe Harry Kane, so superlatives are running dry for Harry Winks’ superb performances in the midfield.
It’s easy to forget that he’s just 21 and has relatively so little first team experience compared to the names he was up against on the Wembley pitch. Yet there he was often bossing the match against the likes of Luka Modric, Casemiro and Toni Kroos.
To have shone in both matches against Real Madrid and against Liverpool as well as being one of the best players on the pitch at Old Trafford in Sunday’s defeat shows he’s hitting a whole new level and accelerating quickly in his development.
His range of passing is superb. His ball to Trippier to set up the first goal was sublime and he was involved heavily in the build-up for Tottenham’s third.
5.A new European glory glory night for the memory banks :
White Hart Lane had its fair share of European glory glory nights and now Tottenham Hotspur fans will always have a game under the lights to remember from their spell at Wembley.
Any talk of a hoodoo at the national stadium has been consigned to the distant past and the way Pochettino’s men dismantled the world’s best only served to pump up the crowd more.
The noise was goosebump-inducing, especially the roar of 80,000 people after Alli’s second goal when the fans realised this was actually going to happen, their team was going to beat Real Madrid.
Every chant was sung loud and proud and at a greater volume than ever heard before.
The players responded in kind and Madrid looked thoroughly dejected throughout the second half.
Even Ronaldo’s consolation goal never felt anything more than that as Vertonghen, Sanchez and co repelled everything that came their way.
The Spurs fans may never truly take to Wembley, but they transformed it into a temporary version of White Hart Lane on Wednesday night and they’ll always remember the Champions League night Pochettino’s men tore Real Madrid to pieces.