The Sports Bay


Is Tottenham Finally Proving Its European Mettle?

English Premiership side, Tottenham Hotspur have in the past shown flashes of being able to compete with the crème de la crème of European football only for them to capitulate at the crucial moments.

The team is blessed with young talents who bond easily with every game played together under the watchful eyes and guidance of a potential Real Madrid manager, Mauricio Pochettino.

This season will make it the third season in the Champions League, having played 32 matches – won 16, drew 7 and lost 10 (most came at the knockout stages where the men are separated from the boys). They have always played in the second tier European competition – the Europa League.

This season, Spurs defeated Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund in the group stage which is an indication that they are growing in the competition, They even topped the group ahead of defending champions, Real Madrid.

Tottenham are now unbeaten in 13 league and cup games, as the business end of the season looms. As well as the Champions League, they are still in the FA Cup and are chasing a top-four finish in the Premier League. They are on course to prove their mettle at least as it stands now.

Again, against Juventus, Spurs came alive after going down to 2 goals in Italy. It was like they were about to capitulate at the business end of the competition once again but then the plot twisted.

First Kane had a header saved from inside the six-yard box by Buffon, but the England striker who has a special affinity with scoe=ring very important goals, beating the veteran with a composed finish after Alli’s pass.

Hugo Lloris who was rarely troubled produced a fine save from Bernardeschi after the interval but Tottenham got the reward their hard-work deserved when Eriksen scored from a set-piece.

In the end, Spurs had 12 shots – half of them on target – and 67% of possession, while half of Juve’s four shots in the opening 45 minutes were from the penalty spot.

“You need some luck always in football,” added Pochettino. “I think in the second half we played much better.

“We deserved the victory more than the draw. It’s so important to recognise and congratulate the players. “The tie is open. Yes, we have the dream and hope that we can beat them at Wembley.”

This gritty display against the two-time champions of Europe will certainly give Spurs momentum going into a crucial spell of games. However, only time will tell.

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