Tottenham will have a mountain to climb in the second leg of their Europa League Round-of-16 fixture after being defeated by Borussia Dortmund by 3-0 at the Signal Iduna Park.
Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino made his priority obvious that he wants the Premier League instead of European honours, making seven changes from the side that drew with Arsenal on the weekend.
The hosts punished them for it.
Even though both clubs currently sits second at their respective domestic leagues, Thomas Tuchel’s side produced an exhilarating performance that completely outclasses the Tottenham replacements.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored the opening goal of the game at 30 minutes with a header from Marcel Schmelzer’s cross. However, it was after half-time that the Spurs irregulars showed that they were incapable of keeping up.
They were slow to press from the corner where Marco Reus smashed in Neven Subotic’s header. Then, the German team essentially cut through the heart of the English club’s midfield with 21 passes to set up Reus for his third.
It was then that the regulars: Harry Kane, Erik Lamela and Mousa Dembele were brought in, but it was already too late; Dortmund had run rampant and may already have placed both feet solidly into the quarter-finals.
Borussia Dortmund never won the Europa League, or the UEFA Cup as it was previously known. Nonetheless, their strong performance here may warrant the need of something special to stop them from reaching the final in Basel, and perhaps even lifting the trophy.