Spurs: Now for the group stages!!
Harry Redknapp promised an all-out-attack tactic and he duly delivered it. The lads proved their worth back on the familiar grass of White Hart Lane, as Peter Crouch was the hat-trick hero.
Crouch scored the first goal of the match after just five minutes, thanks to a Gareth Bale cross, thus putting Tottenham ahead for the first time in the draw. The pressure was off for Spurs and Defoe put the home side further in front in the 32nd minute despite controlling the ball with his arm. Bale was again the provider, lofting the ball past the opposition’s defenders.
Lady luck shone for Spurs in the 39th minute, as Hochstrasser’s shot went just wide and Bienvenu missed another chance minutes later.
Redknapp replaced the injured Gomes with Carlo Cudicini before the start of the second half, as risks had to be avoided.
The second half continued in the same frame as the first. In the 49th minute, Lennon made a stunning run, as he beat three defenders before being blocked. Crouch missed a glorious chance minutes later, as he failed to beat the keeper from six yard out after Bale’s corner, only to score in the 61st minute, converting Bale’s corner with a close-range header.
Bale came close to score after he was cut out in the area by Lulic, who saw his second yellow of the match. Crouch converted the penalty as he completed the hat-trick before being denied a fourth by a brilliant save from the Swiss goalkeeper.
Spurs’ player of season so far – Gareth Bale – received a standing ovation as he was replaced to Niko Kranjcar. Bale truly deserved the standing ovation, given that he set-up all the four goals of the night.
4-0 for Tottenham and Harry’s boys qualified for the group stages of the tournament after a great game, leaving hat-trick hero Peter Crouch hoping for a draw against giants Real Madrid, Inter of Barcelona, as he confessed on uefa.com:
“It’s a massive achievement. If we had gone out with a whimper in a two-legged affair it would have been disappointing. We worked so hard for it last year and now we’ve got the opportunity to draw a Barcelona, Inter Milan or Real Madrid. Spurs are a club that should be in the Champions League and we’re looking forward to it.You never know how good you are until you play against the best teams. “
“We’ve got some fantastic match-winning players. We’re organized, can do a job away from home and I don’t think any team would enjoy coming to White Hart Lane. We’ve got players who can take the game to them and on our day we can beat anyone. We’ve got enough about us to have a good run.We’re happy and privileged to be in the competition and will give a good account of ourselves.”
Today. Harry’s boys will have their eyes fixed on Monaco, as they await the draw at 18.00 CET.
Will they play Barcelona or Real Madrid? Dear readers, have your say!
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