Wednesday 25 April 2018

Aubameyang makes Spurs pay for going through the motions

Tottenham 1 B Dortmund 2

Aubameyang: On target Photo: Reuters
Aubameyang: On target Photo: Reuters
Dortmund's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scores their second goal Photo: Reuters / John Sibley
Tottenham Hotspur's Eric Dier dejected after Aubameyang scores his side's second goal Photo: PA

Gerry Cox

One got the feeling it was not going to be Tottenham's evening from the sixth minute, when goalkeeper Hugo Lloris collided with his team-mate Ben Davies, who required extensive treatment.

Dortmund wins 5-1 on aggregate

The full-back looked dazed, however, and had to be replaced by Danny Rose five minutes later, by which time Dortmund were already taking control. Marco Reus shot into the sidenetting after a clever backheel from Henrikh Mkhitaryan, and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was a constant danger.

When Erik Lamela inexplicably played the ball into his path in the 23rd minute, the Gabon striker made him pay.

He took the ball towards goal and languidly lifted his right leg to send the ball swerving and dipping on its way past Lloris and into the far corner of goal from 25 yards. That was game over, the goal killing the tie as a contest and silencing the home supporters, who were competing noisily up to that point with the boisterous German fans.

Spurs went through the motions with gusto, though. Eric Dier headed just wide from a Lamela corner, and the impressive Toby Alderweireld was unlucky when the ball fell behind him in the visitors' six-yard area. Lamela shot over the bar, then put Heung Min Son through on goal, only for the Korean to drag his shot wide.

That showed the dilemma for Mauricio Pochettino, who had no joy when he tried to replace Harry Kane with Nacer Chadli in Dortmund last week.

This time he tried Son instead of the England striker but the Korean is not in the same class, and Spurs lacked a real cutting edge.

Son did score in the 73rd minute but it was mere consolation after the prolific Aubameyang had grabbed his second to kill off the tie three minutes earlier.

Irish Independent

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