After taking a 2-0 lead over Olympiakos, Tottenham ended up drawing their first Champions League outing of the season.
For Tottenham, their first Champions League game of the season was a forgetful experience as the Londoners were held to a 2-2 draw by the Greek giants. The Spurs had taken a well-deserved lead in the opening half through Harry Kane and Lucas Moura.
However, some serious defensive issues became apparent as the hosts managed to level the scoreline.
Defense is suspect
Mauricio Pochettino saw firsthand that his Tottenham defense is a serious cause for concern. Davison Sanchez was playing down the right flank and was exposed constantly. Champions League clearly isn’t the place where the Londoners are able to keep clean sheets.
After last night’s show, Tottenham have conceded 20 goals in the tournament since last season’s start of the competition.
Although Spurs are expected to still progress through to the next phase of the competition, defense is clearly going to let them down. A team that achieved so much last season in Europe shouldn’t be making such mistakes especially against teams it’s expected to beat.
Mathieu Valbuena still has it
The Frenchman is one of the most underrated players in Europe. The former Marseille man is an accomplished playmaker and last night made things really hard for Spurs. The former France international set up his team’s first goal and then converted a penalty.
Clearly, this is the sort of playmaker who’s going to make a difference in a team like Spurs. Perhaps, this is the player Pochettino should have bought?
Eriksen not the same
Throughout the summer, Christian Eriksen was aching for a move away from Tottenham. However, the move didn’t happen and the Dane is staying put at least for one more season. This definitely has had an effect on the playmaker.
Eriksen was unable to make much of a difference when Arsenal clawed back to level 2-2 in the North London derby a few weeks ago. And it was the case once again in Greece with the Spurs ace unable to do much apart from conceding possession that played a role in Valbuena’s equalizer.
Clearly things have to improve quickly. Tottenham haven’t made a great start to the Premier League campaign the way they did last time out. Similarly, the Champions League also hasn’t started on a positive note.
With teams now realizing their defensive frailties, the manager needs to address these glaring issues before they derail both campaigns.
Tottenham have conceded more goals than any other side in the Champions League since the start of last season.
Olympiacos have not won in their last nine Champions League outings which is their longest run ever.