Published: Wed, February 14, 2018
Sports | By Phillip Butler

Mauricio Pochettino hails Spurs' character after 'sloppy' start in Champions League thriller

Mauricio Pochettino hails Spurs' character after 'sloppy' start in Champions League thriller

They topped a group with the current holders and went through at the expense of Borussia Dortmund.

Mauricio Pochettino's side were 2-0 down inside 10 minutes after Gonzalo Higuain followed up a sumptuous volley with a penalty, awarded for Ben Davies' foul on Federico Bernardeschi. After that however it was pretty much one-way traffic from the away side who controlled possession and carved out chance after chance.

Juve keeper Gianluca Buffon, 40, had not conceded a goal for 694 minutes - until Kane rounded the Italian to slot home Dele Alli's pass on 35 minutes.

"Kane said I made a rough challenge on him once?"

However, Eriksen's decision to hit the free-kick at Buffon's side was heavily influenced by a save Cech pulled off in the north London derby, with the Dane opting not to shoot at the far, top corner this time around.

"At 2-0 down after eight or nine minutes, you think 'this could get a little messy if they are not careful.' But I thought the character they showed for the rest of the half completely dominated Juve".

Tottenham mounted a remarkable comeback to deservedly draw at Juventus in the first leg of their round of 16 tie.

He said: "Fantastic game".

However, with Juventus content to sit back, Spurs began to dominate possession and nearly got one back in the 26th but Buffon pulled off a great save to keep out Kane's header from point-blank range.

"We are more mature now".

Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri reacted strongly afterward when it was suggested his team, who are going for a seventh successive Serie A title, should have beaten Spurs, who are fifth in the English Premier League.

"I don't know if you ever feel ready to win a trophy, most clubs are just used to it", Eriksen said. The Dane also tested Gianluigi Buffon from outside the box and eventually scored the equaliser with a low free kick.

"He was fantastic but Christian, in my three years and nine months, has always been important for us, always stepping up, growing up".

"The team showed great character and the good thing is that this is our fourth season and always we are improving in different aspects". "After 20 minutes, we were 3-0 in the lead".

"It was an enthralling encounter overall: we started the first half excellently, but ultimately succumbed to Spurs' steady growth of confidence during the game".

"We had a 50 per cent chance before and we still have 50 per cent. Tottenham are unbelievable", he said.

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