Date : –  26th August 2021 Kick off : –  19.45
Competition : –  Europa Conference Play-off Second Leg Venue : –  Tottenham Hotspur Stadium 
Crowd : –  30,215
Referee : –  Ruddy Buquet (FRA) Linesmen : – Mr. Guillaume Debart; Mr. Frederic Haquette (FRA)
Fourth official : – Amaury Delerue (FRA)
Weather : –  Cloudy, mild
Spurs kicked off the first half attacking the Paxton Road end
Playing time : –   90 + 7 minutes


    Kane  08m 28s   NONE
    Kane  33m 54s  
    Atunes  (o.g)  69m 30s  
  Romero  (foul on Jorge Silva)  30   Denilson Jr.  (foul on Romero)  41
  Bryan  (attempted foul on Pires)  63   Atunes  (foul on Moura)  49
      Rui Pires  (foul on Lo Celso)  64


22.   Pierluigi GOLLINI 13.   Andre FERREIRA
2.   Matt DOHERTY 21.   Jorge SILVA
4.   Cristian ROMERO    2.   Marco BAIXINHO  (c)
15.   Eric DIER 32.   Flavio RAMOS
33.   Ben DAVIES 5.   ANTUNES      (o.g.)   ( 29.   FERNANDO Fonseca  76)
19.   Ryan SESSEGNON  (  5.   Pierre-Emile HOJBJERG) 6.   Jobson de Brito GONZAGA  
8.   Harry WINKS  
18.   Giovani LO CELSO 46.   Stephen EUSTAQUIO  ( 77.   Nuno SANTOS  77)
26.   Rui PIRES 
27.   Lucas MOURA  ( 20.    DELE Alli  84)   
10.   Harry KANE      (  7.    Heung-Min SON  72) 23.   Lucas SILVA  ( 9.   UILTON  77)
11.   BRYAN Gil    ( 23.    Steven BERGWIJN  72)  10.   DENILSON Jr  ( 99.   Douglas TANQUE  88) 
15.   DELGADO  (  7.   Helder FERREIRA  77)
Substitutes Substitutes
40.   Brandon AUSTIN 12.   JEIMES
3.   Sergio REGUILON 3.   Nuno LIMA
6.   Davinson SANCHEZ 22.   Luiz CARLOS
48.   Maksim PASKOTSI 16.   Bobo DJALO
43.   Nile JOHN 45.   Joao PEDRO
29.   Oliver SKIPP 8.   Abbas IBRAHIM
54.   Dilan MARKANDAY 20.   Luis BASTOS
44.   Dane SCARLETT   


Manager : –   Nuno Espirito Santo Manager : – Jorge Simao
Kit Supplier : –  Nike Kit Supplier : –  Joma
Shirt Sponsor : –  AIA Shirt Sponsor : – Solverde
Sleeve Sponsor : –  cinch Sleeve Sponsor : –  Aixpacos
Shirt Sponsor : –  AIA Shorts front Sponsor : – Remax
Shorts back Sponsor : – Devesa
Shirt back Sponsor : – Portpallet Metal Pallets
Colours : –
Shirts : – White
Shorts : – Navy blue
Socks : – White
Colours : –
Shirts : – Yellow with white side panel; white and green neck and cuffs
Shorts : – Green
Socks : –  Yellow



With the off-pitch transfer farrago over Harry Kane’s desired departure now behind us (for now), it was possible to concentrate on the football on the pitch and Spurs set about over-turning a one goal deficit from the first leg of this Europa Conference play-off to sail through to the group stages 3-0, with Kane scoring twice in a much feted return to the starting line-up.

With the prospect of exiting Europe at this early stage a dreaded thought, especially with the transfer window still open for another week, it was expected that the Portuguese opposition would put up a stiff defence of their lead, but they were almost undone in the first 30 seconds.  Cristian Romero struck an Alderweireld-like 50 yard diagonal ball over the Pacos back four to give Kane a chance from the left of centre inside the box, after a fantastic first touch killed the ball.  The keeper Ferreira did well to get out to him quickly and deflect the shot wide, but he crunched into his own centre-half in doing so and left him needing treatment.  When the Portuguese side did move the ball forward, Romero was there to tidy up and pass back to Pierluigi Gollini.  Unfortunately, his confidence on the ball was misplaced and his ability with his feet was lacking, as he tried to trick his way around a striker who had closed him down and only succeeded in dragging the ball back under the sole of his boot and off for a corner ! 

It was obvious from and an early stage that it was going to be a very different game to the one last week, with Lucas Moura weaving past players at pace and coming from a town best known for its furniture production (according to the Spurs website), it was a flat Pacos side that turned up tonight compared to the one eager to close our players down all over the pitch.  It didn’t stop them trying to rough them up and how they only finished with three yellow cards is a mystery to many people apart from the referee Ruddy Buquet … and not a term of abuse, that’s just his name.

Lo Celso struck a shot that kept going up as it cleared the bar, but when Pacos brought the ball away along their right wing, Ryan Sessegnon chased back and Winks slid in to win the ball and was up to dink a ball over the defence for Bryan Gil to run onto.  He took the ball on towards the dead-ball line and pulled it back to Kane, standing 12 yards out.  The ball seemed to get stuck under his feet, but he sorted them out to side-foot the ball to the keeper’s left, even though he was right on top of him, to find the bottom corner of the net and put Spurs level on aggregate.

Kane almost turned provider when his ball into the box was just too powerful for Sessegnon to reach and then when Lucas found Gio Lo Celso in the right side of the box, he got a rebound off a defender and played a ball across the six yard box that Jorge Silva did well to hold off Ryan coming in behind him to allow the keeper to collect the ball.  Bryan was finding good positions and a low cross from the left was aimed at Kane, but was taken by Ferreira on the ground before it got to the forward.  Romero picked up a yellow card for a foul none the worse than other that had been made by Pacos players, but he did not allow this to affect his game and it was impressive to see the way he was comfortable going forward to get into the opposition box and his confidence to show good skills when it appeared he was boxed in near his own corner flag.

At our end, Gollini was playing Superman in diving out to punch away a corner and then at the other, Bryan had a pop at goal form outside the box, with a shot that would have gone to the keeper’s left, except it got a big deflection off Flavio Ramos and hit the outside of the keeper’s right hand post.  The keeper took the corner high above his head, but within a minute, Spurs were 2-0 ahead on the night.  The keeper threw the ball out and good pressure from Gio caused a pass to go to Sessegnon.  Romero and Bryan got the ball to Kane, who shot from 25 yards.  That was blocked, but the ball fell to Gio in the box and he lifted the ball over a defender towards the middle of the area and shot, but it was blocked and the keeper took him out.  As it was, the ball went sideways to his right, where Kane had continued his run and side-footed past Antunes on the line from six yards out to see Tottenham overcome the first leg score-line with 34 minutes on the clock.  The high press was working to win the ball in advanced positions and turn them into attacks.

Finally a yellow shirt received a yellow card when Denilson Junior bundled Romero off the pitch as the ball ran out of play and then proceeded to abuse the ref, who, luckily for him, was more tolerant of it than other officials, otherwise he might have walked.  Spurs worked the ball well from the free-kick and Lucas was freed on the right wing, but when he tried to find Kane with his cross, it was too hard and way too high, going off for a throw on the far side, which the Pacos player took somewhere near the halfway line !  Lucas was involved again, just before the half-time whistle, when a Pacos corner came in, but he bent low to head the ball away.

With the aggregate lead, Spurs were soon on the attack in the second half, with Antunes yellow carded for stopping Moura in the only way he could … illegally.  He was at it again, obstructing Doherty as he looked to progress down the right wing and Lo Celso took the resulting free-kick that fizzed into the side-netting at the near post.  Bryan had a shot from outside the area blocked, with the ball spinning away for a corner on the right side and then his run at the defence brought a free-kick when he was hacked down.  Unfortunately, the closest Spurs came from either dead-ball situation was from the corner, with it finding its way to the far post, where a half clearance was won by Bryan on the edge and he shimmied inside one player to fire a fierce left foot shot at goal that flew a foot over the top.  Looking like a young Jimmy Neighbour (there’s one for the teenagers !), he has a good feel for the ball and looks annoyed every time he doesn’t score, so wants to do better.  He got booked for a wild swipe at Pires as he ran away, with the referee allowing play to continue and then waving the yellow card a good couple of minutes later.  He was more forgiving on some of the Pacos players who had already received cautions when they fouled again though.

PEH replaced Ryan Sessegnon, who did well, making some good runs without receiving the ball and working back well, but looked as though he is still getting back to full fitness.  Lo Celso was floating around midfield, prompting play and having an impressive match, causing so much trouble that the Pacos players found it difficult to deal with him, unless they brought him down, as Pires did and got booked.  When the free-kick was played to Matt Doherty, he played the ball square to Gio to drive a shot in that Ferreira pushed away well.  The Argentinian was involved again, taking the ball from his compatriot Romero after he picked off a pass, then playing Bryan through on the left.  The new signing’s shot saw the ball go across the keeper, but it went wide of the far post.

Another foul on Lucas brought another free-kick, this time on the right hand side of the box.  Spurs threw a number of players into the goalmouth, as the usual jostling went on, but 10 yards back from the dead-ball line, Gio took it and the ball flashed in at the near post off the head of the awful Antunes, who had a mare of a game.  At 3-0 up and with twenty minutes to go, it seemed reasonably comfortable for Spurs and Pacos knew the game was up.  Nuno took the opportunity to rest Kane and Bryan, with Son and Steven Bergwijn given the chance to run at a tiring team and it was Sonny who took Gio’s through pass to put him clear in on goal (maybe VAR could have ruled him slightly offside, but it wasn’t in operation tonight), but with only the keeper to beat, he hit his shot inches wide.  Then it was Bergwijn’s time to shine, making a run down the left, getting tight to the dead-ball line and foxing the defenders to make a yard to shoot at the near post, which stopped his effort with the ball bouncing out.

Hojbjerg almost scored the goal of the season from a Son corner taken on the left side.  Played deep to the far post, Pierre-Emile’s first time volley was hit with great force, but it flew into the South Stand, although what a goal it would have been if it had been on target !  Dele came on for Lucas for the last few minutes and managed to squeeze in a nutmeg !  Bergwijn set up Son, but his shot was blocked with that being the last of the action before the whistle put Spurs through to the group stage of this new competition.  

There were good things to take from the match apart from progressing in the competition.  Romero and Bryan showed that they have settled well and there were very good performances by Lucas, Bergwijn, Kane and Dier.  Everyone else was solid and the team looks like they have an understanding of Nuno’s tactics.  There will be harder opponents to come in the Premier League and in this competition, but for now, it was mission accomplished.

Barry Levington



Harry Kane equalled Steve Perryman’s 64 European game appearance record.

He also became the first Spurs player to reach 40 goals in Europe, extending his record as Tottenham’s leading scorer in European competitions.