The inevitable happened last night; Spurs went out of the Champions League to Real Madrid after failing to overcome a 4 goal deficit from the first leg. Whilst they huffed and puffed they failed to break down the Madrid defence and conceded a sloppy goal to Cristiano Ronaldo which effectively ended the contest.
It has been an exciting campaign for Spurs who have scored 25 goals and conceded 17. They have clearly enjoyed playing in the Champions League and being tested against the best sides in Europe. It makes such a difference to see a team genuinely enjoying their football and the challenge. Their adventures this season remind me very much of Leeds United’s debut season when they reached the semi-finals.
The next hurdle for Real Madrid will be Barcelona who they now face 4 times in 19 days which will effectively decide their season. There was talk from the commentators last night that Mourinho’s mind will now be on Barca; I think he has thought about little else since the final whistle blew in their 5 goal humbling at the Camp Nou in November. Whilst few would back against Barcelona the fact that Madrid now have Mourinho makes a massive difference. In last season’s group stages Inter Milan lost convincingly home and away to Barca but came back to shock them in the semis.
Spurs now only have the Premier League to focus on which is actually just what they need. They have tasted Champions League football and must now ensure they participate next season. With Manchester City stumbling on Monday they have hope again, let us see what they can achieve in the next few weeks.