Dele Alli double helps Spurs to famous Champions League win over holders Real Madrid
- Credit: PA Wire/PA Images
Champions League Group H: Tottenham Hotspur 3 Real Madrid 1
A brace from Dele Alli helped Tottenham Hotspur secure a historic victory over Champions League holders Real Madrid at Wembley.
Spurs were dominant from the off and Mauricio Pochettino’s side truly came of age during a thrilling Group H encounter under the arch.
Alli took the plaudits with two goals, but it was a real team effort with everyone on top form for Tottenham.
The 3-1 victory saw Spurs qualify for the last 16 of the competition and end Madrid’s run of 30 group stage games unbeaten.
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It was a memorable evening for the north Londoners and one their fans will not forget for a long time.
The big team news before kick-off was the fact Harry Kane was fit to start after missing their last two matches with a hamstring injury.
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Heung-min Son dropped to the bench as a result while Serge Aurier and Moussa Sissoko joined the South Korean as substitutes for the visit of Madrid.
Davinson Sanchez and Kieran Tripper replaced them with Pochettino playing five at the back at Wembley.
Real, without the likes of Gareth Bale, Keylor Navas and Raphael Varane, were still able to include Cristiano Ronaldo, Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Sergio Ramos.
The two teams knew whoever won this Group H contest under the arch would qualify for the knock-out phase of the Champions League.
Wembley was engulfed with noise as Madrid got the game underway with the Lilywhites faithful in fine voice.
A rendition of ‘Oh when the Spurs go marching in’ was the first from the hymn sheet before it was interrupted so Ronaldo could be booed.
The first chance of note went to the visitors with Modric dummying the ball for Isco, but Hugo Lloris comfortable saved his low strike.
Spurs responded with a good move of their own in the seventh minute when Harry Winks drove forward with purpose.
Alli picked up the baton and switched play to Trippier, but his cross was just too high for Kane.
Three minutes later and Madrid’s back four looked suspect when Kane wonderfully turned away from Ramos near the halfway line.
Real won the ball back, but Modric gave the ball away uncharacteristically and Eriksen was nearly played in on goal, yet his touch let him down.
It was an encouraging sign and Madrid were genuinely looking shaky with Eric Dier winning the ball back seconds later and Kane having a chip saved by Kiko Casilla.
Another chance occurred in the 14th minute when Kane picked out Trippier and volleyed a cross towards the area, but Alli hadn’t gambled and couldn’t finish off what would have been a great move.
Zinedine Zidane’s side responded with Achraf Hakimi and Isco producing decent crosses, but Toby Alderweireld and Sanchez headed away.
Spurs got back on the front foot though and won a corner in the 19th minute, which came to Vertonghen out wide and his cross was impressively cleared by Nacho.
Winks wasted a decent opening soon after before Tottenham were hit with a blow in the 23rd minute.
Alderweireld brought the ball forward from the back, but after getting into the Madrid penalty area, he pulled up.
The Belgium defender felt his hamstring and couldn’t resume, yet because he had ran off the pitch, Spurs were forced to play with 10-men for around a minute.
Eventually the change was made and Sissoko replaced Alderweireld, which saw Dier drop into the back three.
It was a shame for Tottenham, but in the 27th minute it was all forgotten when the Wembley roof was taken off.
Kane forced a throw-in after chasing a lost cause and the ball eventually came to Sissoko, who passed into Winks’ path and he picked out Trippier with a wonderful cross-field ball.
Trippier then volleyed first-time across the Madrid goal and Alli was on hand to slide in the opener.
Spurs led the Champions League holders, but there was a long way to go and the goal seemed to kick Real into gear.
Casemiro tested Lloris two minutes after Tottenham’s goal, but the captain got down well and Ben Davies headed clear.
Spurs were being asked plenty of questions now and Modric delivered a teasing cross seconds later, which Dier managed to clear.
Ronaldo got in on the act in the 32nd minute when he worked a yard of space, but Lloris was equal to his effort.
The former Manchester United man tested Tottenham goalkeeper again 60 seconds later when he ran onto Hakimi’s cut back, yet his low shot was straight at Lloris.
Spurs reminded the visitors of their threat nine minutes before the break when Alli and Kane combined neatly and the latter saw a volley saved by Casilla.
Madrid were still pressing, however, and Ramos had a shot deflected wide in the 40th minute following a Kroos free kick.
Pochettino’s men then created a fantastic opportunity of their own with Trippier again involved, as he beat two opponents before cutting back for Sissoko.
The substitute scuffed his effort into Kane’s path and with his name in lights, he was denied a goal by a superb Ramos block.
Zidane’s men fought back and Benzema tested Lloris with a curling strike, but Spurs managed to see out a single minute of additional time to lead at the break,
Tottenham, at half time, were 45 minutes away from recording a famous win over Real Madrid and also qualifying for the last 16.
Although the visitors started the second period with more intent, it was Spurs who had the better first two openings.
Kane was unable to find the unmarked Eriksen in the 47th minute though, before another chance went begging.
Lloris needed treatment in the 51st minute after getting caught by Ramos following a Kroos free kick.
The Spurs goalkeeper was called into action again two minutes later when he got a touch to a dangerous Marcelo cross.
Tension was building at Wembley and Tottenham were given a worry when Vorm was told to warm up.
But with 56 on the clock, it was the visitors who had the bigger problems when Spurs made it 2-0.
Alli twisted away from Casemiro and ran at the Madrid back four. Casemiro tried to get back at the Tottenham midfielder, but he was dumped on his backside and Alli’s shot from the edge of the area deflected off Ramos and into the net.
Tottenham were in dreamland and so was their two-goal hero, as the England ace pulled off a trademark nutmug on Ramos soon after his goal.
Madrid fired a warning to the hosts in the 62nd minute, however, when Winks got his clearance wrong and Kroos let fly, but his volley was headed over by Sanchez.
From the resulting corner, a massive goalmouth scramble occurred with Trippier kicking a loose ball, potentially off Casemiro, off the line.
Ramos looked to fire in the rebound, but he smashed an effort against Ronaldo and Spurs had survived.
With less than half an hour remaining, things were looking good for Tottenham, but they were soon about to get better.
In the 65th minute, they produced a sensational counter-attack goal to kill off Madrid once and for all.
Alli was at the heart of it. He turned away from his marker before finding Kane and Kane this time picked out Eriksen, who slotted past Casilla to make it 3-0.
Pochettino made a change straight after the goal with the excellent Winks making way for Mousa Dembele.
Madrid looked to pull one back straight away, as Modric played in Ronaldo on the right and he cut inside, but Lloris saved well.
Spurs began to play with their opponents after as several home passes were loudly cheered in the 74th minute.
Another Alli nutmeg saw the crowd off the feet before it should have been 4-0 with 12 minutes left.
Trippier again got joy down the right and crossed in for Alli, but the Spurs number 20 headed wide.
Kane left to a standing ovation moments later with Fernando Llorente coming on and Madrid then pulled one back.
Marcelo’s cross was controlled by substitute Borja Mayoral and Ronaldo was on hand to smash in from close range.
With 10 minutes to go, the visitors had been handed a lifeline at Wembley and now the nerves returned.
Sanchez needed to make an excellent block to deny Marcelo three minutes later before Casemiro tamely tested Lloris.
Ronaldo tried his luck again two minutes later, but it was comfortable for the home goalkeeper and another opportunity had gone.
Dembele and Ramos clashed in the dying exchanges with the Belgium picking up a booking after a late challenge on the Madrid skipper.
The fourth official then signalled for three minutes of additional time and it gave the Spurs fans a chance to savour the final few moments.
Tottenham’s supporters were up in arms when Marcelo sliced well wide from a corner and with that, the game was virtually over.
The full time whistle was blown with the Spurs fans in fine voice and saluting their team who had pulled off a remarkable result.
After drawing with Madrid at the Bernabeu two weeks ago, they taught the Champions League holders a lesson this time around on home turf.
Pochettino’s men were too good for the Spanish giants all over the pitch and in the process secured a famous win.
Tottenham Hotspur: Lloris; Trippier, Alderweireld (Sissoko 24), Sanchez, Vertonghen, Davies; Eriksen, Dier, Winks (Dembele 66); Alli, Kane (Llorente 79).
Unused substitutes: Vorm, Rose, Son, Aurier.
Real Madrid: Castilla; Hakimi, Ramos, Nacho, Marcelo; Kroos, Casemiro, Modric (Hernandez 81); Isco (Mayoral 74), Benzema (Asensio 74), Ronaldo.
Unused substitutes: Ramos, Vallejo, Vazquez, Ceballos.