Mastering momentum: exploring the anatomy of amazing comebacks | Andrew Anthony

Psychological momentum helped Spurs and Liverpool reach the Champions League final, even if they did not realise it Whatever you think about Jos Mourinho, most would agree he knows a thing or two about football. Surveying the two epic semi-final second legs of the Champions League, he came to two very different conclusions about Liverpools and Tottenhams unlikely victories. In the first case, he said, losing 3-0 in the first leg to mentality, specifically the mentality instilled in the team by Jrgen Klopp. In the second, he thought Spurs three second-half goals to snatch the tie against Ajax were all down to tactics, namely playing long balls up to Fernando Llorente. Both analyses have their merits but they miss out …

The Premier League teams ineptitude index 2018-19

Its awards time for the most incompetent teams in the Premier League, from those who cant take throw-ins to others who revel in needless yellow cards Welcome to the Guardians fifth annual index of ineptitude, a catalogue of calamity, a prospectus of the piss-poor. As each season draws to a close, the best moments, players and teams of the year are all charted, celebrated and cheered. Which means that what comprises most of the rest of the Premier League experience is missed. So here is a (not always serious) commemoration of cackhandedness: heres where to cheer goalkeepers who help the opposition, those who cant score from 12 yards, players given cards for removing their shirts, and professionals who cant even …

Pep Guardiola last won a big European away game in 2011. Is he overthinking? | Jonathan Wilson

Manchester Citys defeat at Tottenham took his run without a quarter- or semi-final victory to 10. It feels like more than a blip Eight years ago Pepe was sent off and Lionel Messi scored two goals, one of them brilliant, as Manchester Citys 1-0 defeat at Tottenham on Tuesday was the 10th straight away game in the Champions League quarter- or semi-final that Guardiola has failed to win. A skim down the list shows a range of games. Draws at Milan with Bara in 2012 or at Manchester United with Bayern in 2014 were good results. Nobody was initially concerned by what were widely seen as unfortunate 1-0 defeats by Chelsea and Real Madrid in the following round in those …

Sons solo effort secures win for Spurs after Lloris saves Man City penalty

Son Heung-mins solo effort secures a Champions League quarter-final first-leg win for Tottenham after Sergio Ageros controversial early penalty is saved It was the kind of epic night for which this stadium was built and by the time the match was all done, with the victorious players of Tottenham celebrating in the centre-circle and Mauricio Pochettino striding on to the pitch to join them, it felt like their regal new home had already created its first golden memories. The supporters will certainly cherish Son Heung-mins contribution if it is the platform for Spurs to eliminate the Premier League champions when the sides renew acquaintances in Manchester next Wednesday. Sons goal dramatically changed the complexion of this two-leg tie, but that …

Spurs new stadium: lets call it a home win

Around the pitch and in the stands, the Tottenham Hotspur stadium is both magnificent and intimate, but the jarring exterior is mid-table fodder It was, for a while, all about the Tottenham Hotspur stadium, it was reported, was to offer its premium customers a selection of specially sourced cheeses, a concept which encapsulated how far the football fan has come from those black-and-white, crackly-voiced days when a gristly pie was all you got, an edible version of the brown balls that were hacked around the Flanders-like mud of those bygone fields a distillation (conceptually speaking) of the catarrh of a million Capstans. Which, goes the narrative, was how it should be. In the tribal warfare of football you dont want …

Premier League: 10 talking points from the weekends action

Neil Warnock cuts out the moaning, Jordan Henderson scythes through Chelsea and injuries may leave Spurs midfield blunted 1) Henderson relishing his licence to roam After 76 minutes, when he was withdrawn to a deafening ovation, Jordan Hendersons work was done. A lung-busting display by the Liverpool captain set the tone for a vital victory, a relentless performance typified by the moment when he burst to the byline and supplied a hanging cross for Sadio Man to convert. Henderson asked Jrgen Klopp if he could play further forward in a more natural No 8 role one he has impressed in for his country and he flourished there against Chelsea. Mohamed Salahs rocket, another peerless defensive display by Virgil van Dijk …

Liverpool get out of jail as Alderweirelds late own goal earns win over Spurs

Toby Alderweirelds 90th-minute own goal got Liverpool out of jail at Anfield as they edged to a crucial 2-1 win over Tottenham The clock was seconds away from the 90-minute mark when the final, decisive blow sparked euphoric scenes at Anfield. Liverpool were a few minutes of stoppage-time away from a result that who knows? could have been a grievous setback. But then the ball was aimed high towards Mohamed Salah at the far post and what happened next, put bluntly, changed everything. Suddenly it did not seem quite so important that Salah had played so far below his point of maximum expression. Hugo Lloris, who can be surprisingly error-prone for a World Cup-winning goalkeeper, had not been able to …

Tottenham and Manchester City prepare to join the All England Club | Paul Wilson

Tottenham and Manchester Citys Champions League quarter-final is the latest in a line of intrigue-filled English derbies in Europes top competition A new chapter in the colourful history of English teams meeting each other in the Champions League is set to open on Tuesday, when the first European game at Tottenhams scored three goals in a stunning 20-minute burst at Anfield. City did not play badly in either leg but ended up losing them both. After The Fiver: sign up and get our daily football email. Terrys miss sent the shootout into sudden death, where Edwin van der Sar denied Nicolas Anelka to secure a 6-5 win. Avram Grants Chelsea came second in the league to Manchester United that year, …

Son Heung-min christens new stadium with first Spurs goal in win over Palace

Son Heung-min scored the first ever goal at Tottenhams new stadium in a 2-0 win over Crystal Palace a victory which helped Spurs regain third place They had come to marvel and to party but what the Tottenham hordes truly wanted from the night when their jawdropping new stadium was unveiled was a win: a tonic to reenergise their faltering push for a top-four finish. The nervous excitement crackled, particularly during a helter-skelter first half, and there were times when Daniel Levy, the big boss as Mauricio Pochettino had called him on Tuesday, might have given his 1bn kingdom for a goal. Further dropped points were not a part of his script. Then it happened. The honour of marking this …

Klopp and Pochettino have reminded English football what it does best | Jonathan Wilson

Liverpool and Tottenham meet on Sunday when the high press will be evident in what is likely to be an engaging ninth meeting of the men in the dugout English football has, of course, learned before about the dangers of hailing golden ages before theyve hatched, but with four Premier League clubs in the last eight of the Champions League and a youthful national side playing with rare verve, it can reasonably be acknowledged that there is a profound sense of positivity and promise about the game. At least at the top end. And if you only look at whats happening on the pitch. And you ignore the looming iceberg of Brexit. A huge part of the reason for that …