Pochettino’s delight at European progression


According to Sky Sports Mauricio Pochettino admitted he feared the worst when our Champions League draw came out, but is pleased his side have progressed as group winners.

Son scored the winner against Borussia Dortmund on Tuesday, with his eighth goal in 10 games against the German outfit, and we came from behind to seal a 2-1 victory.

The result means we head into the last 16 as the surprise winners of Group H, ahead of European champions Real Madrid, with one match to spare with Apoel Nicosia at Wembley to come next month.

The article adds how different it is to last year , when our hopes of progress had already been ended in a group that included Monaco, Bayer Leverkusen and CSKA Moscow.

“The season before, we were watching the draw and we thought: ‘Oh Monaco, Leverkusen and CSKA’ and we thought we had a chance to go to the next stage,” Pochettino said.

He added: “Then this draw we looked between us and thought: ‘OK we are going to compete and we say nothing’ – and look now we are first, top of the table.
“It was difficult because Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund and Apoel are always difficult but we try to enjoy and be competitive and try to win, that was the idea in every single game.

He also said: “I am happy for the result, to be top of the table, but we’re looking forward to playing the next game.”

The article adds how we started Harry Kane and Dele Alli, both recently injured, as well as Danny Rose, who was left out of the squad for Saturday’s defeat to Arsenal with Rose certainly justifying his place with a dynamic display down the left while Alli set up Son’s winner, having danced between two Dortmund defenders out wide and then provided the cut-back.

“I am so happy about him, of course,” Pochettino said of Alli.
“For me the position he played today he can play easy because of the characteristics of him. He can play behind striker or like a number eight because he has the quality and talent and capacity to cope with different positions, he has that.

Poch waxed lyrical about the whole team and the returning Danny Rose: “But I’m not only proud of him but the whole team. Danny Rose was fantastic too. We must recognise that. In the second half, and the whole game, after 10 months injury it’s difficult.
“The performance was great. I think the whole team was very good, fantastic performance.”

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