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Barcelona information: Carles Alena quietly very good however turned around Blaugrana throttled by means of Spurs – Article

Tottenham squeezed via to the ultimate 16 of the Champions League by means of taking some extent against a weakened Barcelona at Camp Nou on Tuesday night time.

Lucas Moura used to be the hero, coming off the bench to web a overdue leveller and cancel out a impressive early opener from Ousmane Dembele, however Barcelona can also be happy with some extent after fielding a much-changed beginning line-up.

Here are the 3 key takeaways on a memorable night time for Tottenham in Catalonia.

Second-half development serves Spurs

Tottenham headed into the game figuring out they needed to event Inter Milan’s outcome against PSV, and the Dutch team’s early goal on the San Siro used to be a suitably surprising backdrop to a dramatic night which noticed Spurs to begin with glance timid before a great deal bettering after the ruin to completely deserve their draw.

Manager Mauricio Pochettino gave the impression willing to throttle Barca within the centre of the pitch, fielding a fluid 4-3-2-1 formation which noticed Christian Eriksen occupy slender central positions in toughen of Harry Kane and the one actual width supplied by means of full-backs Kyle Walker-Peters and Danny Rose.

It labored to an ideal extent, with Barca’s ownership game pressured again into deep spaces whilst centre ahead Munir El Haddadi – and later replace Lionel Messi – receiving little or no provider because the ball hardly ever entered Tottenham’s final 3rd.

Their defensive convenience and a better sense of want allowed Tottenham to grow to be a better attacking pressure in the second one half of, with Christian Eriksen pulling the strings and Harry Kane main the road. For some time it appeared a string of excellent saves from Jasper Cillessen would deny Spurs, however then Kane’s exact move used to be simply completed by means of Moura and the English facet had the purpose they wanted.

Valverde rings the adjustments

The massive pre-match speaking level from Barcelona’s point of view used to be how a lot supervisor Ernesto Valverde would rotate, torn between the will to win the game and the information that his team had already wrapped up first position within the staff.

The supply of the teamsheets an hour before kick-off delivered the solution loud and transparent. No Messi, no Pique, no Alba, no Busquets, no Ter Stegen. Valverde had opted to ring the adjustments big-time, hanging his accept as true with in untested kids like central midfielder Carles Alena and left-back Juan Miranda along a handful of fringe performers such as Thomas Vermaelen and Munir.

Some fared higher than others. Alena used to be quietly very good within the centre of midfield, strengthening the rising feeling that he’s a sound choice as a starter for any game, whilst Vermaelen confirmed himself to be a competent centre-back choice when he remains are compatible and Cillessen made some nice saves.

But deputy left-back Miranda seemed neatly wanting the usual required to compete at this stage, and Munir made no impact in any way up entrance – even if in equity he had no provider.

Dembele does it again

One player who used to be left within the beginning line-up by means of Valverde used to be Dembele, who spoke back by means of scoring a in point of fact memorable goal for the 2nd successive game.

On Saturday night time at Espanyol, the French ahead’s particular second with a wonderful roller into the highest nook, and in this instance he snapped right into a problem to dispossess the dithering Walker-Peters at the midway line and raced ahead to evade two demanding situations before sliding a low end under Hugo Lloris.

In reality, that impressive strike used to be adopted by means of a normally irritating efficiency, full of needlessly conceded ownership and extraordinary passing alternatives. But that’s par for the direction with Dembele, a high-reward, high-risk player who’s similarly prone to win a game single-handedly or present the opposition a possibility to attain with a sloppy mistake.

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