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Champions League 2018-19 final: 5 reasons why Tottenham lost to Liverpool

Elvis Ume O
ANALYST
Feature
8.15K   //    Timeless

#4 Questionable tactics by Mauricio Pochettino

Pochetino made some questionable calls.
Pochetino made some questionable calls.

56 minutes into the Champions League quarterfinal first leg with Manchester City, Harry Kane came together with Fabian Delph and showed immediate signs of discomfort.

Totteham's worst fears were confirmed as their talisman limed off and scans showed he had suffered ankle damage with initial estimates ruling him out for the rest of the season.

The 25-year-old is a bonafide world class striker and his goals have been crucial to everything the North London outfit have achieved over the last few years, so it was understandable that there was genuine concern over how the club would cope without him.

That answer turned out to be "very well indeed", as Heung-Min Son proved to be the hero - scoring three goals across both legs in the last eight fixture with Manchester City to eliminate their more fancied Premier League rivals.

In the semifinal against Ajax, the Lily Whites were down and out, and facing elimination, having been three goals down on aggregate to Ajax before former PSG reject and Brazilian international Lucas Moura totally turned the tie on its head with a second half hat-trick to eliminate Ajax in their backyard in the most dramatic of circumstances and book his team's place in the final.

Few days to the showpiece event, reports emanated that Harry Kane was in line for a shock recovery, and in the week leading to the final, the World Cup Golden Boot winner had recovered fully and was training with the side.

A major question heading into the final was whether Harry Kane would be started in the match, seeing as he had been out of action for 53 days and the answer proved to be affirmative as Pochetino handed his number 10 a start at the expense of the man who got them there, while also starting Harry Winks who had been sidelined for the same time as Kane.

This decision backfired spectacularly, as both men failed to offer much to the match, as Harry Winks was hauled off after 66 minutes, with his replacement unsurprisingly injecting some bite into the Tottenham attack.

Prior to Lucas Moura's entrance with 24 minutes to go, Tottenham had failed to get a shot at Liverpool's goal. At full time, they had forced eight saves out of Alison and it is not rocket science that this came about due to the increased penetration Lucas Moura offered.

While Harry Kane huffed and puffed in vain, Lucas Moura's impact was almost immediate and one of the great 'what ifs' questions of this final would be what would have happened had Lucas Moura started in Harry Kane's place.

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