Luka Modric admits he was desperate to return from injury to play his part in what was one of our most famous European nights.
The midfielder had been out of action for two weeks having had an operation to remove his appendix and was a major doubt for our Champions League, Round of 16 first leg against AC Milan.
But he made the trip to Italy on Monday morning and was delighted when Harry Redknapp told him he was in his plans.
Luka said: “It’s a great game – the knockout stages of the Champions League. I spoke with the gaffer the night before and he told me he was thinking of putting me on for half an hour. He did and everything was perfect.
“I feel much better. I know I didn’t play for two weeks or have normal training, which was hard, but now I feel good.”
Luka’s introduction from the bench in place of Rafael van der Vaart just after the hour mark meant he was able to play a key part in a victory he feels sends out a big statement.
He continued: “It was unbelievable. We scored the goal and we showed we’re a great team, even if we’re missing a couple of important players.
“We showed we could cope with big teams and that we can perform well and beat them away from home, which is a massive achievement for us.”
But Luka is also well aware that we still have a job to do at the Lane on March 9 if we are to reach the Quarter-Finals.
He added: “It’s far from over. They’re a great team with great players and we need to be focused for the second leg and concentrate and play our best game.
“I hope we’ll all be fit for the second leg, no injuries, and if we play like Tuesday – for which there is no reason not too, we can only play better – I hope we can go through.”