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Spurs finish top of their group with comeback win in Dortmund

Tottenham respond to derby day defeat with Champions League success

22 November, 2017 — By Dan Carrier

UEFA Champions League, group stages
BORUSSIA DORTMUND 1 (Aubameyang, 31)
SPURS 2 (Kane, 49, Son 75).

TOTTENHAM came from a goal down to record a battling away victory against German giants Borussia Dortmund tonight – and seal top spot in their qualifying group.

Mauricio Pochettino’s men knew grabbing all three points would be enough to go into the knock out round draw as winners with a game left to play, but failed to capitalise on a series of half chances in the first 45 and went behind on to a Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang goal on the half hour mark.

Spurs looked disjointed in the opening period, as if they were still smarting over their poor performance in the north London derby defeat against Arsenal at the weekend – but at the break Pochettino’s words instilled fresh belief.

The returning Danny Rose, who had not made the squad for Saturday’s game, turned on the style and began creating chances on the left, and it was his determination that led to the opener. He combined with Christian Eriksen to find Harry Kane lurking in the Dortmund box, and the striker finished clinically, making it six Champions League goals this term for the number 10.

With the confidence draining from the home side, who reached the final in 2013, Spurs sensed they were there for the taking – and on 75, a burst by Dele Alli took him into the danger zone. He shimmied past two defenders and his neat ball to Heung-Min Son gave the South Korean the space he needed to curl a beautiful effort in from distance.

And as Dortmund tried to find a way back, both Eriksen and then substitute Fernando Llorente had chances to make the final score more comprehensive.

Speaking after the match, Pochettino said: “It was a massive effort again from all the players. We are so happy to finish top of the group – and the fans were fantastic today.”

The win confirms Spurs go through in first place – and will avoid the Champions League big guns such as Barcelona and Paris St Germain when the knock out rounds start again in February.

BORUSSIA DORTMUND: Burki (Weidenfeller 90+2), Toljan, Schmelzer, Zagadou (Toprak 78), Bartra, Weigl, Kagawa (Castro 66), Gotze, Yarmolenko, Guerreiro, Aubameyang
Subs not used: Dahoud, Phillipp, Sahin, Schurlle

SPURS: Lloris, Vertonghen, Dier, Sanchez, Aurier, Rose, Winks, Son, Kane (Llorente 85), Eriksen (Sissoko 84), Alli (Dembele 80)
Subs not used: Vorm, Trippier, Davies, Foyth.

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