Late Dembele stunner sets up Inter Milan tie as Spurs down Lyon

20:19 21 February 2013

Mousa Dembele, Tottenham Hotspur. Photo: Nigel French/EMPICS Sport

Mousa Dembele, Tottenham Hotspur. Photo: Nigel French/EMPICS Sport

EMPICS Sport

Europa League: Lyon 1 Tottenham 1 (Tottenham win 3-2 on aggregate)

Tottenham’s difficult week in Lyon ended on a dramatic high after Mousa Dembele fired his team in to the last 16 of the Europa League with a stunning last-minute strike.

Maxime Gonalons, the Lyon captain, looked to have fired Lyon to the 1-0 win they required to advance with his first-half goal.

However, Dembele popped up in the 90th minute, hammering a blistering 25-yard strike past Remy Vercoutre to set up a mouth-watering third round tie against Inter Milan.

Much of the pre-match focus had been on the nasty attack by a group of 50 locals which hospitalised three Spurs fans last night.

Villas-Boas’ team looked like failing to give their vocal supporters a pick-me-up after a dire first half.

Dembele was one of the worst offenders. The Belgian’s passing, and that of Scott Parker, was very sloppy and Kyle Walker was given the runaround by Lisandro Lopez.

Gareth Bale inspired Spurs to a first leg win with two stunning free-kicks, but he missed a golden chance to give Spurs a crucial goal in the second half, sidefooting wide while unmarked.

That looked like being it for the Londoners, but Dembele provided the magic they required with just 30 seconds remaining.

Villas-Boas spoke openly yesterday about how he hoped winning a second Europa League could help him find contentment after his unsuccessful 256-day reign at Chelsea, and the 35-year-old will be extremely thankful that his team remain in the competition.

Amid a cacophony of noise coming from the Virage Nord, Spurs looked like a team on the edge from the start.

Clement Grenier swung in a teasing corner in the first minute, Brad Friedel was caught in two minds and Jan Vertonghen put in an emergency clearance before Lyon could pounce.

Grenier tested Friedel again soon after, whipping over a looping ball, but Alexandre Lacazette could only head into the goalkeeper’s arms.

Other than the lively Lewis Holtby, who was making his second start, Tottenham failed to impress.

Careless defending from Benoit Assou-Ekotto allowed Lacazette to break free down the right, but luckily for the Cameroonian, referee Wolfgang Stark brought play back for a foul.

Bale, so devastating in the first leg, was anonymous for the first 15 minutes. The first time the Welshman had a say in the course of the game was when his shoddy marking allowed Lyon to break the deadlock after 16 minutes.

Walker fouled Lisandro and when Grenier clipped the free-kick to the near post, Bale turned away from Gonalons - who beat a rooted Friedel from eight yards.

Walker was having a poor game at right-back. The England defender was booked soon after for fouling Samuel Umtiti.

He was not the only one underperforming, though. Parker and Dembele were painfully slow in possession in midfield while Emmanuel Adebayor struggled up front on his own.

Villas-Boas came to the edge of his technical area looking concerned, and he had every right to be worried.

Grenier centred the ball to the unmarked Gueida Fofana, but he laid the ball off to Bafetimbi Gomis rather than home in on goal.

Lisandro shot weakly wide and Lacazette shot straight at Friedel towards the end of the first half.

Spurs came out much more confidently after the break. Parker worked the ball out to Adebayor, who whipped a beautifully shaped ball to the back post, but Bale sidefooted barely an inch wide.

Lyon raced up the other end and Tottenham needed a superb save from Friedel to deny the ever-impressive Grenier.

The goalkeeper then made an error trying to clear a chipped ball over the top, but Assou-Ekotto muscled past Lacazette to retrieve the ball. The forward appealed for a penalty but it was not given.

If Tottenham were going to get an equaliser, it looked like it was only going to come from Bale.

Vercoutre had a nightmare trying to handle the Welshman’s swirling shots last week and he looked uncomfortable punching away two similar efforts in quick succession.

Adebayor hooked the ball on to the top of the Lyon bar and Aaron Lennon had a penalty appeal turned down soon after.

Clint Dempsey went close twice soon after his introduction, and it seemed Spurs were destined to fail.

Dembele had other ideas, however, dropping his shoulder to beat Grenier before hitting a powerful long-range shot beyond Vercoutre.

Related articles

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest football news

Thursday, February 11, 2016
Zlatan Ibrahimovic of Paris Saint-Germain (Adam Davy/PA Wire)

There will be plenty of talent on the free agent market this summer. Here’s our team of the best players available.

Thursday, February 11, 2016
Arsenal's Alex Iwobi (left) battles for the ball (John Walton/PA Wire)

Arsenal youth coach Andries Jonker says young forward Alex Iwobi is now considered a first-team player.

Thursday, February 11, 2016
Manuel Lanzini, West Ham United

Hammers boss Slaven Bilic has revealed that it will not be long before we see Manuel Lanzini and Diafra Sakho

Thursday, February 11, 2016
Chelsea's John Terry gestures to the Chelsea fans (John Walton/PA Wire)

John Terry announced last month that he will be leaving Chelsea at the end of the season.

Thursday, February 11, 2016
Mark Cousins of Dagenham & Redbridge (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Dagenham & Redbridge keeper has confidence in young centre-back pairing ahead of Barnet clash

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Sony Smart Ultra HD 55'' LED TV

Enjoy the ultimate entertainment experience in your living room with the Sony Smart Ultra 55’’ LED TV. Be the envy of all your friends with this huge TV- you can change your living room into your own cinema! Get the boys around to watch the football or get the girls around to watch the DVD of 50 Shades.. this is a prize that everyone would enjoy! Stand a chance to upgrade your current entertainment system by wining this fantastic prize.

Read more
Surface Pro 4

Technology is ever evolving. We are constantly being shown new technology that is innovative, revolutionary and designed to make life easier for us all. Gone are the days of dial up modems and computers so large you needed half a room to store it. We are in the age of smooth, small and sleek. Companies are all trying their best to create technology that is easy to transport and guaranteed to be user friendly.

Read more

Latest Tech News

Transport