Tottenham’s ecstatic players sing Wonderwall in the dressing room after sensational second-half comeback against Ajax to set up a mouth-watering Champions League final against Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool
- Lucas Moura’s second half hat-trick got Tottenham into Champions League final
- Ajax held an aggregate lead of 3-0 at half-time in the second leg in Holland
- It sparked jubilant celebrations within Tottenham’s squad at full-time
After the tears on the pitch, Tottenham’s players sparked an evening of wild celebrations inside their dressing room after another stunning Champions League fightback.
Trailing Ajax 3-0 on aggregate at half-time in the second leg, a Lucas Moura hat-trick hauled Tottenham into next month’s final where they will meet Premier League rivals Liverpool no June 1 in Madrid.
Manager Mauricio Pochettino was weeping on the pitch but after he and his players celebrated with their travelling fans, they took the celebrations indoors.
Midfielder Erik Lamela celebrates after the Tottenham Hotspur victory in Amsterdam on Wednesday. His teammates leap around behind him, as they celebrate a remarkable comeback
The Tottenham players were singing Wonderwall in the dressing room after the final whistle
The Tottenham squad and staff gather for a picture amid their celebrations on Wednesday
Erik Lamela, a second half substitute, and Moussa Sissoko, were on hand to capture the scenes as Tottenham’s players reacted to their stirring comeback victory.
Christian Eriksen and Ben Davies led their jubilant team-mates through a boisterous rendition to Wonderwall by Oasis as the magnitude of their achievement began to sink in.
But with one final Premier League fixture remaining, the antics could not last too long into the night.
Tottenham round off their domestic campaign at home to Everton on Sunday and they shared a picture of their hat-trick hero Lucas posing with the match ball on the plane back to London.
‘I don’t have words to explain this moment!’ Lucas told Spurs TV after the game. ‘It’s very special for me, I am very, very happy and very proud of my team-mates.
‘Of course, I need to share (this moment) with all my team-mates, my family, my friends. I always believed it was possible to come here, to win and to go to the final.
Lucas Moura poses with the match ball after his incredible Tottenham hat-trick at Ajax
Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino was weeping on the pitch after beating Ajax
Tears streaked the face of the Argentine as Spurs fought back against Ajax in Amsterdam
‘We fought – that’s what we needed to do with our intensity. The second half was amazing and everyone did really well. I need to enjoy this moment – it’s impossible to explain!’
Moura converted a left-footed strike from the edge of the penalty area in added time to hand Spurs victory.
The Brazil international, his team-mates and coaching staff headed over to celebrate with the travelling Tottenham supporters at full-time, with full-back Danny Rose soaking up the scenes with a beer in his hand. His manager was even spotted having a swig in front of the supporters.
And when Pochettino eventually got round to giving his post-match interviews, he was still struggling to put his feelings into words.
‘Still difficult to talk. Emotion is amazing, thank you football,’ Pochettino said.
‘Thank you these guys, they are heroes. In the last year I am telling everyone I have a group that are heroes and they showed today big balls.
Pochettino helped himself to a swig of beers as he celebrated on the pitch with his players
Lucas Moura sealed Tottenham’s progression with a last minute goal for his hat-trick
Ajax’s players lay strewn on the pitch after Moura scored his third goal deep in stoppage time
‘Second half was amazing, thank you football. This type of emotion is impossible without football. Thank you to the fans, those who believed in us and to achieve this is fantastic. It’s hard to describe in words.
‘We were talking before the game that when you work and when you feel the love, it’s not a stress it’s a passion. We showed that tonight. I think in the game against City and today it is amazing.
‘It was a joy to watch this type of game, difficult for Ajax, to compete at this level in this competition this can happen and I am so grateful to be a coach, to be in football and living this moment.’
A night that ended as possibly the best in Tottenham’s history could not have started much worse.
Ajax’s 19-year-old captain Matthijs de Ligt sent a powerful header beyond Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris after only five minutes to extend Ajax’s advantage from the first leg to 2-0.
And shortly after Son Heung-min hit the post, Ajax doubled their lead with a stunning strike from Hakim Ziyech following a pass from former Southampton playmaker Dusan Tadic.
Pochettino reacted by swapping midfielder Victor Wanyama for striker Fernando Llorente at the interval to spearhead their pursuit of three away goals.
Ajax’s captain Matthijs de Ligt scored a towering header after five minutes for the ideal start
When Hakim Ziyech got Ajax’s second, Tottenham’s European run seemed destined to end
And it was Moura who came to the fore, notching two goals in four stunning minutes to leave Tottenham on the brink of yet another remarkable turnaround by an English side only a day after Liverpool came from 3-0 down to knock Barcelona out.
Ajax, however, were not quite finished. Ziyech saw a low drive bounce off the face of the post in the 79th minute and then when Jan Vertonghen hit the bar from six yards, the Dutch side would have been forgiven for thinking they had seen off the storm.
Moura had the final say. Another ball pumped forward, another Llorente flick on and Dele Alli threaded the ball neatly into his path before he steered a left-footed strike low past goalkeeper Andre Onana for a 3-2 win, a 3-3 aggregate triumph.
Rose admitted that Tottenham took inspiration from Liverpool, their opponents in the final, after watching the win against Barcelona.
‘We saw Liverpool last night and it just goes to show it’s not over until it’s over. There were a few words said at half-time and we then played like that,’ the full-back said to BT Sport.
‘We can beat anyone when we play like that. The gaffer mentioned it at the hotel before we left and said that’s the right attitude.
But it was Lucas who stole the show with a sensational second half hat-trick
Tottenham’s star man Harry Kane joined the celebrations after the final whistle
‘How we started against Ajax in the first leg was not right and now we’re looking forward to the final.’
And it was all without their star man Harry Kane, as well.
The striker sprinted across the pitch to celebrate with his team-mates as the final whistle was blown and the England captain now has a June 1 target to prove he has recovered from an ankle injury sustained against Manchester City in the quarter-final stage.
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