Tottenham stunned the world on Wednesday night as goals from Dele Alli and Christian Eriksen handed Spurs a convincing win over Champions League holders Real Madrid. A late consolation goal from Cristiano Ronaldo did little to disrupt the mood in a historic night in London.
Both teams headed into the match on the back of a league defeat at the weekend; and having drawn at the Bernabeu in the reverse fixture, each side was eager to get the better of the other – and staple their name to the top of Group H.
The return of Harry Kane gave Spurs a huge confidence boost, as well as Dele Alli’s lifted suspension, allowing the England international to play his first Champions League game of the season.
On the other hand, Madrid were determined to rectify their wrongdoings at the weekend – following a bitterly disappointing 2-1 defeat to newly promoted La Liga side Girona – aiming to use Spurs’ Wembley troubles to get them back to winning ways.
The opening period of the game started quite lively – half chances arriving for both teams. However, Madrid, a side looking bereft of confidence following their poor start to the season, spent the first half hour looking shaky at the back – something obvious when the home side took the lead on 26 minutes.
A smart diagonal ball from youngster Harry Winks caught the visiting defence off guard. A beautifully connected first time cross from Kieran Trippier fell to the feet of Dele Alli – the 21-year-old becoming the first Tottenham player to ever score against Real Madrid on his return to the Champions League.
The first half continued to live up to expectation. While Madrid upped their game following on from the goal, handing Cristiano Ronaldo a few opportunities; few clear cut chances were created and Hugo Lloris was never really tested.
Likewise, Tottenham continued to press forward when given the opportunity, but little was done to worry Kiko Casilla between the sticks, and the sides headed into half time with the away side trailing.
The second half began exactly as the first ended, with both sides determined to break through the opposing defence.
However, the night went from good to great for Dele Alli and his side when the Englishman doubled Spurs’ lead and earned himself a brace. Receiving the ball in the final third, the attacker ghosted past Casemiro, selling the Brazilian into diving in prematurely before rifling a shot towards goal.
The effort took a deflection off Sergio Ramos’ thigh, leaving Casilla in no man’s land, and handing Spurs a 2-0 lead after 56 minutes.
Not ten minutes later, Spurs all but secured the three points with their third of the night. A swift counter attack started by Alli caught the away side exposed in their bid to fight back into the game.
The midfielder rolled in Harry Kane, dragging Sergio Ramos – the lone defender – out wide; who then played in Christian Eriksen to go one on one with Casilla, and the Dane never looked like missing.
In the space of 20 minutes, Tottenham were out of sight.
I kind of have a lot of thoughts about Real this last couple of weeks, but…it can wait. Spurs, man. Spurs.
— Chris Deeley (@ThatChris1209) November 1, 2017
Alli had the opportunity to complete his hat-trick in the 78th minute, Trippier’s cross picking out the Englishman completely unmarked in the six yard area; but the 21-year-old couldn’t quite connect with the ball properly – instead knocking it well wide of the goal.
Ronaldo pulled one back for the visitors only moments later. the ball fell to the 32-year-old inside the box – the Portuguese striker drilling his volley into the bottom right corner.
However, his effort was to spark no glorious comeback, and Tottenham ended the match 3-1 victors; becoming the first ever English team to beat Los Blancos in the Champions League group stages – securing their place in the knockout stages of this year’s tournament.
#THFC: Lloris (C), Trippier, Sanchez, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Davies, Dier, Winks, Eriksen, Dele, Kane. #COYSpic.twitter.com/KfTlTBkKPz
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) November 1, 2017