Spurs dealt CL blow by rivals as Pochettino does double over former club

Tottenham’s Champions League hopes suffered a major blow when they lost 2-0 in the Premier League against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

Ange Postecoglou’s side were seven points behind fourth-placed Aston Villa and now have just one game in hand as goals from Trevoh Chalobah and Nicolas Jackson saw Mauricio Pochettino emerge as winners against his former club to improve your team’s chances of qualifying. for Europe for next season.

This was far from Spurs’ finest moment, as they rarely put serious pressure on a Chelsea backline that had already recorded the club’s worst league defensive record in over 30 years.

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Instead, it was Spurs’ rearguard that looked insecure and fragile. First, Chalobah had a clear run off a Conor Gallagher cross in the first half as Chelsea took a deserved lead, then, with 18 minutes remaining, Son Heung-min and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg did nothing but stand and Watch Jackson jump as Cole Palmer’s 30-yard free kick hit the underside of the crossbar.

Chelsea have risen to eighth place, their highest position since Pochettino was appointed in July and with realistic hopes of reaching the Europa League, but Tottenham’s ambition of a top-four finish now looks increasingly unlikely.

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The hosts had, by far, a more lively start. After four minutes, Mykhailo Mudryk placed the ball in the left channel for Jackson to dive inside Cristian Romero to chase him. Guglielmo Vicario stood up and took the sting out of Jackson’s shot, allowing Micky van de Ven, who was covering him, to carry the ball to safety as he inched towards the line.

Noni Madueke, fresh from his goal against Villa on Saturday, went close midway through the half. After jumping the box from the right touchline, he crossed two Spurs defenders and fired a shot that went over the crossbar by inches.

Then came the opening goal. Gallagher’s free-kick went over everyone and from behind he stole Chalobah, leaping and arcing a header high over Vicario. The VAR checked for offside and a foul by Marc Cucurella, but the goal stood and Chelsea took the lead.

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The lively Mudryk curled a shot just wide of the post as the hosts firmly established themselves in the lead. It had been a strong first half by the Ukrainian, dominating the left side with vision and clear, clinical plays.

Romero broke free at the far post from a Pedro Porro free kick late in the half, but his header went wide, then Chalobah dived to deflect Pape Sarr’s shot. They were the clearest openings created by an unusually forceful Spurs attack.

For 15 minutes after the break, Postecoglou’s team surrounded Chelsea in their own half, but posed little genuine threat. Porro came in from the right and forced Djordje Petrovic to deflect the ball at his near post, a rare sight on goal in a lackluster display.

James Maddison was called up from the bench to try and light a spark for Tottenham, but Chelsea continued to chase him, harassing and harassing, occupying the little open space in their defensive zone.

Instead, they were the ones who ended the game. Cucurella was fouled by Dejan Kulusevski 30 yards out, Palmer’s audacious free kick broke the bar and Jackson was first on the scene to score the second.

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