Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino and his players may feel a little aggrieved this morning after only managing a 1-1 draw against Fiorentina last night in the home leg of their Europa League clash.
Two London derbies (one the League Cup final) now sandwich the second game over in Italy and the squad have it all to do.
Here are five things we learned from the game last night.
Pochettino trying to hedge his bets
Pochettino’s team selection showed that he’s holding players back for the Premier League game against West Ham this weekend. Key players in all parts of the team were on the bench. He could have gone all out and then rested players next week in the second leg.
Soldado has a part to play this season
Roberto Soldado would have done his confidence the world of good with his goal last night. He worked hard, as always, and showed that he can have a say on things when the boss has to rest the in-form Harry Kane.
Townsend looks like he’s stepping up
Andros Townsend was arguably Tottenham’s best player last night. His pace and the cutting edge he gives Tottenham’s attack is quite obvious. He’s put Erik Lamela under a lot of pressure with regards to taking his place in the side on a consistent basis.
The boss has great defensive options
There were two changes to the back four last night with Ben Davies coming in at left-back and Federico Fazio slotting into his normal position alongside Jan Vertonghen. Playing a defence 50% different from in the last game was always going to be a big risk, but Spurs look decent across the back.
Extra pressure has been created for Spurs
Spurs are now under massive pressure looking ahead to next week. The second leg takes place just a few days before the League Cup final against Chelsea. It puts the boss and the team in a difficult position and they have to decide whether to go all out for a win in the second game, possibly damaging their chances against the Blues.