Tottenham Hotspur survived a huge scare on Tuesday evening in their home fixture against PSV Eindhoven, but they eventually managed to resurrect their dream of reaching the knockout stages thanks to two late goals from Harry Kane.
It was a fixture which, on paper at least, represented Tottenham’s most straightforward of the group phase. But the visitors are certainly not a side that anyone in Europe can afford to underestimate; they have won eleven straight fixtures on the bounce in the Eredivisie so far this season and they showcased their quality in both fixtures against Tottenham.
Tougher tests certainly await Spurs and they will need to adopt a smarter approach in Europe if they are to successfully sneak into the next round of the competition.
With Tottenham three points behind 2nd place Inter Milan, their fate is out of their hands at this stage. The task that awaits Mauricio Pochettino: an incredibly difficult home tie against an Inter Milan outfit featuring the relentlessly clinical Mauro Icardi, and a showdown with Barcelona at the Nou Camp on matchday six.
The pair of fixtures lying in waiting are two of the most daunting Spurs could wish for, but Sky Sports pundit Dean Saunders believes that they can use their perilous situation status to their advantage.
Now that the manacles of pressure have been released from Tottenham, they can go out and express themselves with a freedom which has been absent from their play in Europe so far, and Saunders believes that three key players could galvanise their European campaign.
Whilst speaking on The Debate podcast as produced by Sky Sports, Saunders said: “I think Spurs now can go and throw everything at it. I think with Eriksen, Dele Alli and Harry Kane on the pitch, they can beat anyone – with them three on the pitch”
That’s quite a claim from Saunders considering Eriksen and Alli have been distinctly average at times this season, but if they can embrace their big-game mentality in the coming weeks there is no doubt that the aforementioned trio could combine to game-changing effect.
Kane proved that he is the man for the big occasion for the umpteenth time on Tuesday evening, now it’s time for Alli and Eriksen to step up to the plate and deliver two performances of elite quality against Inter and Barcelona.
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