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UEFA Champions League 2019/20: 3 reasons why Tottenham Hotspur defeated Crvena Zvezda

Tottenham were impressive in tonight
Tottenham were impressive in tonight's 0-4 win over Crvena Zvezda
Scott Newman
Modified 07 Nov 2019, 04:14 IST
Top 5 / Top 10

Tottenham Hotspur got back to winning ways tonight in their Champions League encounter with Crvena Zvezda, defeating the Serbian side 4-0 in what could well have been seen as a banana skin match.

The victory puts Spurs on 7 points in Group B – 5 points behind leaders Bayern Munich but 4 ahead of Crvena, meaning they now look likely to qualify for the knockout stages.

Mauricio Pochettino’s men started the game brightly and although they didn’t create too many clear-cut chances, newcomer Giovani Lo Celso put them ahead on 34 minutes with a left-footed shot from close range after a somewhat bizarre goalmouth scramble.

Tottenham doubled their lead through Heung-min Son early in the second half, and then scored a third also through Son just minutes after. The icing on the cake came on 85 minutes, when substitutes Ryan Sessegnon and Christian Eriksen combined to give Spurs a fourth goal.

Here are 3 reasons why Tottenham defeated Crvena Zvezda.

#1 Tottenham attacked with purpose from the off

Spurs showed plenty of attacking verve tonight, with Heung-min Son scoring a double
Spurs showed plenty of attacking verve tonight, with Heung-min Son scoring a double

It may have taken Tottenham a short while to get into their groove, but it was clear from the off that Mauricio Pochettino wanted his men to really attack this game. He set his side up in a 3-5-2 formation, and it felt like Eric Dier was the only midfielder sent out to play a defensive role, as Tanguy Ndombele, Moussa Sissoko, Giovani Lo Celso and Dele Alli all appeared to have attack on their minds.

Sure, Spurs didn’t create too many clear-cut chances in the first half, but they consistently put their Serbian opponents under pressure with wave after wave of attacks, and while not all of them came off, it was nice to see Tottenham attacking with confidence and verve despite their form being very questionable of late.


Once Pochettino’s side took the lead late in the first half it was quite clear that the game was only going one way, and the gilt-edged chances they created in the second half ended in three impressive goals, even if Christian Eriksen’s took a deflection on its way into the net. Heung-min Son, in particular, was extremely clinical in front of goal – impressive given the issues he’s faced in the last few days.

Overall the performance should give Spurs some much-needed confidence going into their Premier League match this weekend against Sheffield United; perhaps it was the case that a more attacking system was needed all along.

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Published 07 Nov 2019, 04:14 IST
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