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UEFA Champions League 2019-20: 3 reasons why Tottenham Hotspur beat Red Star Belgrade

Scott Newman
Modified 01 Apr 2020, 17:29 IST
Top 5 / Top 10

#2 Red Star’s defence was diabolical

Dismal defending by the Serbian side allowed Tottenham to run riot
Dismal defending by the Serbian side allowed Tottenham to run riot

For as well as Tottenham played tonight, it must be said that their opponents weren’t up to much. Prior to this game their Champions League form hadn’t looked too bad – they were defeated 3-0 by Bayern Munich in the Allianz Arena, but came back with a 3-1 home victory against Olympiacos to give them a chance of making the knockout stages. Judging by tonight’s performance, the idea of the Serbian side making the knockouts is laughable.

The first quarter of the game saw them concede two goals, but in reality, it could’ve been far more. Their midfield simply went missing entirely – Moussa Sissoko and Tanguy Ndombele had no issues in controlling the centre of the pitch – and their defence left huge gaps too, enabling Tottenham’s attack to slice them open time after time again.

The Serbian side did settle down in the latter part of the first half, and while they never really threatened Pochettino’s side, it did look like they could perhaps come out swinging in the second half. A ridiculous mistake by Marko Marin allowed Ndombele to steal the ball, and seconds later Son had his second goal.

From there it was essentially game over, and a 5-0 loss largely flattered Red Star. This was a big win for Spurs and could go a long way to rehabilitating their season – but the truth is they’ll face much harder opponents in the majority of their Premier League games.

Published 23 Oct 2019, 06:03 IST
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