'It shows how far we've come' - Eriksen, Kane, Lloris and Winks react to Bernabeu draw
18 October 2017|Tottenham Hotspur
Could have won, might have lost - the general feeling after Tuesday night's thriller against Real Madrid was that a draw was about the right result and it was a statement performance from our ever-impressing group of players.
We spoke to four of them after the 1-1 draw in Group H of the Champions League, the point gained even more valuable after Borussia Dortmund were held in Nicosia against APOEL. We now top the group with Real Madrid on identical records but six points clear of Dortmund and APOEL with three matches remaining.
To recap a breathtaking match, Harry Kane's dart to to the near post to meet Serge Aurier's cross forced Raphael Varane to divert the ball into his own net for 1-0 on 18 minutes. Serge and Harry also forced Keylor Navas into fine saves while at the other end, Cristiano Ronaldo struck the post and Hugo Lloris denied Isco.
Ronaldo levelled from the penalty spot just before half-time and the Champions League holders - 10 of the 11 players that secured Real's 12 European Cup/Champions League that night started on Tuesday - had their best spell around the hour mark, where Hugo saved quite remarkably from Benzema and Ronaldo.
We had the better chances of the final quarter though as Navas excelled again, somehow getting down to touch wide from Harry one-on-one and deflecting Christian Eriksen's shot into the side-netting.
Here's what Hugo, Harry Kane Christian and Harry Winks had to say...
Below: Hugo in command at the Bernabeu
General views on the match...
Hugo: "It was tough until the end, we could have won, could have lost so then a draw is the honest result. In the second half we lost a bit of possession and control of the game, but mainly because Real Madrid pushed for the second goal. There was still some space to exploit and we had some chances. The goalkeeper made two crucial saves, he was decisive too. Then it’s about details."
On his saves...
Hugo: "I did my job, tried to do my best and help the team but it’s not only me because my defence was heroic. The midfield was fantastic, Winksy is only 21. Then up front the same, everyone. It’s a great team performance and that’s the most important thing. We showed our identity. The performance was there and we need to enjoy that but now we need to stick to this level."
Below: Harry forces Varane into an own goal as we take the lead against the holders
Views on the game...
Harry: "It’s always going to be a tough game but I thought we played well and made it tough for them. Hugo pulled off some unbelievable saves and a point at the Bernabeu – you’d take that every day of the week. It shows how far we’ve come as a team and it puts us in a great position in the group. It shows we can handle it at this level and that’s what it’s all about."
On Navas' saves...
Harry: "The header in the first half was a good reaction save and the one in the second half, I thought I’d done everything right, opened my body up and put the ball where I wanted it but somehow he fingertipped it around the post. That’s football, sometimes they go for you but he made a very good save."
Below: Christian presses Luka Modric
On the match...
Christian: "I think we’ll take that! Of course, if you look at the game we had the chances for more but they did as well. It was an open game and I hope people enjoyed it because there was a lot happening on the pitch!"
Was it as enjoyable to play in as to watch?
Christian: "When the game is that open there is always a lot of extra running for players! You get the chances so you feel like you can win. In football you want the feeling that you can win a game and that’s what we had, unfortunately we didn’t take the win but we’re happy with the point."
On Hugo's saves...
Christian: "Incredible! That save (from Benzema) kept us in the game and we know Hugo is capable of doing this. Of course, we can’t expect him to do that every time, we need to finish it at the other end as well, but we were happy this time that he was there for us."
Below: Harry clashes with Casemiro
On the game...
Harry: "We're delighted to come away with a result and yet at the same time a little disappointed we didn't get the three points because we created chances. We played a slightly different game to what we normally play in the Premier League and we were excellent. We could have nicked it, they could have nicked it, we defended well, they defended well, we had good spells, they had good spells. It was a fairly balanced game. They had more possession but we had clear-cut chances as well. It was a great result. It was a special atmosphere and to come away with a good result makes this night even more special."