It was a tough night for even Tottenham’s most experienced players at the Camp Nou tonight, yet alone a young academy man.
Thanks to injuries to both Kieran Trippier and Serge Aurier in recent weeks, Kyle Walker-Peters was thrown in at the deep end on the biggest stage of all.
After having barely been used so far this campaign, Kyle found himself up against one of the biggest sides in the world, in the Champions League, on a do-or-die night.
To make matters even worse, the inexperienced defender gifted the ball to Barca’s Dembele after just seven minutes, while his own team were all forward for a set piece.
Walker-Peters was unable to recover, and Dembele finished past Lloris, a goal Tottenham very nearly didn’t bounce back from.
Despite this huge mistake, as well as a number of other nervy moments in possession early on, it took tremendous character for the young man to keep going.
At no point did he shy away from the ball, or change up his usual style of attacking wing-back play.
We can’t expect too much from a recent academy graduate who has been gifted little game time, and thrown into one of the biggest matches in the club’s recent history.
Walker-Peters has much to learn, and much to improve on, but he was part of a wonderful team performance tonight.
Onto the next round!
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