Andre Villas-Boas spoke about ‘moments of brilliance’ as we toppled Lyon 2-1 in our Europa League Round of 32, first leg at White Hart Lane.
And the praise wasn’t just for matchwinner Gareth Bale, who dispatched two magnificent free-kicks, but also for Lyon’s Samuel Umtiti, who hit an arrow of a half-volley to stun the Lane and level the score at 1-1 in the second half.
Gareth struck in injury time in both the first and second half. The first, from fully 35 yards, dipped late past Lyon goalkeeper Remy Vercoutre while the vital second, with 92.46 on the clock, flew into the top corner from the edge of the box.
It gives us that key one-goal advantage going into the second leg at Lyon’s Stade de Gerland next Thursday, February 21.
“The game was solved in three moments of great individual brilliance, not only Gareth’s goals, but Umtiti’s goal too,” reflected Andre. “It was a good European night.
“The first half was very good but in the second half, we weren’t as good as we normally are.
“We wouldn’t expect to roll over a team as experienced as Lyon and everyone could see their quality.
“Still, we had some good chances and it was a pity we didn’t make it 2-0, because Lyon then came back into the game. They scored a great goal, and credit to them as well because the game was very open, both teams wanted to attack.
“We take this goal advantage at the moment, we have to try to score in the away leg, it’s important, normally we score away from home so hopefully we can do that.”