Sports

Pochettino: We were the better team

Pochettino: We were the better team

Mauricio Pochettino says he is "still a dreamer" despite seeing his Tottenham side lose out to Juventus in the Champions League.

But the pain of this defeat could yet help to shape a successful future.

It was a last 16 game which felt like a semi-final and elimination for Tottenham Hotspur hurt like it.

"It was a very hard match against a great side like Tottenham, who always give their best and are aggressive, but we know English teams always leave gaps at the back and would give us opportunities", he told Mediaset Premium.

Spurs now return to Premier League action when they face Bournemouth on Sunday.

Hopes had been raised by their performances in the competition.

"They're a machine mentally", the Frenchman said.

"A nightmare? Why? That is football", Pochettino said after the match.

"A few years ago we were in the same place", observed inspirational Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini afterwards.

He said: "It was not a lack of experience or concentration".

"We gradually improved the quality of our play and bringing on [Kwadwo] Asamoah, a great competitor, and Stephan [Lichtsteiner] supplemented what we were trying to do. In the two games we were better but at this level, in three minutes, the tie was Juventus's". The margins among Europe's elite are that fine.

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Click on the link above to follow the action live, while we will have analysis and reaction from on-site at Wembley.

Pochettino, though, insists Tottenham were the best side on the night and did not get their just rewards.

Why bother wasting your time and energy with a whole lot of hard work when you can score a couple of goals in each leg in short, punishing bursts? "It is a learning experience and that is knockout football at its most brutal". The Tottenham bench looked assured while the Juventus bench, ruffled. You get the idea.

"We believe in history".

Tottenham's Champions League campaign came to a crushing halt, while Basel recorded a consolation win over Manchester City as the round of 16 continues.

"It's the history of Tottenham", he said. They always create many chances and score so much, but in the end they miss [lack] something.

There's still plenty for Tottenham to play for this season.

Juventus go through to the next round of the champions league at the cost of Tottenham's despair. Who knows, anything can happen in the Champions League.

This will be followed by an away game at Swansea in the FA Cup quarter-finals.

Lloris, who had very little to do apart from pick the ball out of his net twice, said Juventus had shown just how tough they are, having been declared underdogs for the second leg after being outplayed by Spurs in Turin. "It will feel so sore but in my lifetime I can not remember Spurs building something like they are now".


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