Former Newcastle United and Rangers star Joey Barton has said that Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino was well and truly second best to Juventus counterpart Massimiliano Allegri during the club’s 2-1 defeat to the Italian side.
The north London club went into the clash at Wembley with two away goals under their belt after a 2-2 draw in Turin, and knew that victory or a 0-0 or 1-1 draw would be enough to see them through to the next stage of the Champions League.
However, despite Heung-min Son’s first half goal giving Pochettino and his men the lead, Juve came back with two goals in just under three minutes during the second 45, and with Spurs unable to find a second goal, won progression at Tottenham’s expense, the final score 4-3 on aggregate.
Deliver his post-match verdict, Barton said that the Argentine manager, who is a firm favourite with the Spurs fans after turning them into a competitive side in both England and in continental football, was dominated by Allegri’s tactics as the game wore on.
Posting on his personal Twitter account, he said: “Max Allegri just straight up out coached Poch in the 2nd half. Shift to a back 4 throw Spurs and allowed Juve to steal the momentum. Then the big game experience shone through after that. Spurs should improve for the experience.”
Max Allegri just straight up out coached Poch in the 2nd half. Shift to a back 4 throw Spurs and allowed Juve to steal the momentum.Then the big game experience shone through after that. Spurs should improve for the experience.
— Joey Barton (@Joey7Barton) March 7, 2018
Since taking over as Spurs boss, Pochettino had won 114 of his 206 games in charge, but this was the furthest he had taken the club in Europe.
Football Insider verdict
In the aftermath of what will be a bitterly disappointing defeat for Spurs, fingers will be pointed and blame will be attributed. Of that, some must fall at the feet of Pochettino, who was happy to let his side sail along despite clear evidence the visitors were gaining a foothold. The difference between a good manager and a great manager is reacting to situations, and unfortunately for Spurs, on this occasion, Poch waited until it was too late. Still, as Barton says, the experience will benefit every one of the Lilywhites’ stars, and they could well be back this time next season.
In other Tottenham news, fans were loving the display of one man during the defeat.