Olympiacos 2-2 Tottenham Hotspur Match Report

It was a night of mixed feelings for Spurs after they blew a two goal lead away to Olympiacos in the first game in Champions League Group B.

It’s the second time in under a month that Spurs have found themselves two goals to the good away from home before conceding two having done the same against Arsenal.

Despite scoring two goals at the weekend, Mauricio Pochettino decided to drop Son Heung-min and also Erik Lamela with maybe one eye on keeping the performance defensively tight. Serge Aurier was also dropped for Davinson Sanchez raising eyebrows after the Ivorian’s display against Crystal Palace.

It was Olympiacos who started the strongest as Daniel Podence posed all sorts of problems for Spurs as he went closest for the Greek side, crashing a volley against the post as Lloris looked all but beaten. Thankfully, the rebound was blazed over the bar and Spurs had certainly got away with one early doors.

However, it was Spurs who took the lead, completely against the run of play. Harry Kane was clearly tripped in the area, despite the defenders protests and Spurs were awarded a penalty. Who else to step up and take the penalty but Harry Kane. Having missed a penalty whilst away on international duty with England, goalkeepers had been conscious that Kane usually whips his penalties into the keeper’s bottom right hand corner so the credit lies with Kane on this one as he smashed the ball straight down the middle to put Spurs 1-0 up.

Ten minutes later, it was 2-0. Ben Davies did brilliantly well to intercept an Olympiacos pass who then fed Lucas Moura on the edge of the area and the Brazilian thundered one home. A quite stupendous finish from Moura as he rocketed it past Sa in the Olympiacos goal.

It was a familiar story for Spurs fans as Podence scored just before the break for Olympiacos, giving the Greek champions hope going into half-time. Podence had a terrific game and every attack came down the right hand side as he arrowed a shot past Lloris on the 44th minute.

Olympiacos levelled in the 53rd minute through a Valbuena penalty. A lapse in concentration and a lack of awareness from Christian Eriksen, who didn’t have his best game meant possession was lost as Valbuena tried to turn in the box, Jan Vertonghen trod on the Frenchman’s ankle and the referee pointed to the spot. A clear penalty but an avoidable one.

Spurs still had chances in the latter stages of the games which is a positive. They are creating chances. As long as Spurs win their home games in the group, this will be a good point on the road.

Poch’s Thoughts

“My thoughts are that we’re optimistic, one point at the end,” said Mauricio. “We didn’t start well but we scored the penalty and the second goal from Lucas, but it wasn’t a great end to the first half.

“In the second half we improved but conceded another soft goal. We need to focus on being more aggressive like we were against Palace. In the moment we dropped, our quality dropped too and we conceded too many chances.

“It’s disappointing because we are not talking about quality, we are talking about intensity, will and aggression.

“We need to be optimistic and positive. It’s only the beginning, a point here and now we need to be ready for Saturday when we play Leicester and that’s going to be another tough game.”

Up Next

Leicester v Spurs is the next game in the Premier League for Tottenham Hotspur at the King Power Stadium on Saturday 21st September.

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