Spurs “shocked” AC Milan by attacking at San Siro, says Crouch
TOTTENHAM’S Champions League hero Peter Crouch believes that seven-time European champions AC Milan were “shocked” by Spurs’ attacking approach at the San Siro on Tuesday night.
Harry Redknapp had vowed to attack the Italian Serie A leaders before the tie, and was true to his word as Crouch scored an 80th-minute winner to secure a momentous 1-0 win in Milan.
“I think we shocked them a little bit to be honest because we came to the San Siro and attacked them,” said Crouch. “We are enjoying the Champions League a great deal. It was a great night and we are all really pleased and proud.
“We have set ourselves up fantastically well but I don’t think it’s over because Milan are a great side. They can score goals from anywhere and they will be up for it away from home, but we have set ourselves up extremely well and if we don’t go through then we will be frustrated.”
Crouch has been a key figure throughout Tottenham’s first Champions League adventure, going all the way back to May 5 last year when the 30-year-old netted the winner against Manchester City at Eastlands to win the race for the top four.
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The 6ft 7ins frontman has gone on to score seven goals in eight games in Europe this season, scoring a hat-trick against Young Boys at White Hart Lane in the qualifier before netting against Inter Milan, Werder Bremen (2) and now AC Milan, following a thrilling break from Aaron Lennon.
“It’s certainly up there with the best goals I’ve scored,” said Crouch. “I grew up watching Milan in the San Siro. There have been some great teams here – Fabio Capello’s team with Ruud Gullit and Marco Van Basten.
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“They are all great players so to have got a goal here, I won’t be taking it lightly. I’ll have to go through all the others I’ve scored but I can tell you that it’s right up there with the best.
“We have a lot of pace down the left side with Gareth Bale but he was missing this time and Aaron Lennon was fantastic. It was hard to keep up with him to be honest!”
Meanwhile, Crouch has paid tribute to his defensive colleagues. Tottenham had previously conceded 12 goals in four games on the continent this season, but they kept the likes of Robinho, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Alexandre Pato at bay on Tuesday night to keep an invaluable clean sheet.
“Sometimes we can make it difficult for ourselves but I thought we defended well, said Crouch. “They were always going to come back at us in the second half and you always have to defend well away from home in Europe.
“It was backs to the wall at times but in the first half we dominated the game and limited them to not many chances so I think we deserved to win.”