Matthijs de Ligt names two Tottenham players Ajax struggled to deal with

Matthijs de Ligt of Ajax during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final first leg match between Tottenham Hotspur and Ajax at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on April 30, 2019 in London,...

Tottenham Hotspur lost 1-0 to Eredivisie leaders Ajax in the Champions League semi-final first leg, with Donny Van de Beek scoring the winner.

Matthijs de Ligt of Ajax during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final first leg match between Tottenham Hotspur and Ajax at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on April 30, 2019 in London,...

Ajax captain Matthijs de Ligt admits his side struggled to deal with Fernando Llorente at times despite their 1-0 Champions League semi-final victory away at Tottenham Hotspur on Tuesday night, while speaking to Ziggo Sport.

The Eredivisie leaders famously defeated Real Madrid and Juventus on home soil to set up a last-four meeting with Mauricio Pochettino’s Spurs. And they claimed another superb win away from home in North London, Donny Van de Beek’s composed finish giving Ajax a potentially vital lead after the first-leg.

Tottenham struggled to create meaningful chances throughout the game as they slipped to a second successive defeat at their new stadium, the absence of Harry Kane and Heung-Min Son blunting their attack considerably.

 

Spanish target man Llorente did give Spurs an out-ball, however, and he held the ball up effectively throughout, albeit failing to really trouble visiting goalkeeper Andre Onana.

And De Ligt has pointed out that the former Juventus forward did cause some problems.

"You know they are going to show something. With the long ball to [Fernando] Llorente, it was difficult to put pressure on them,” the 19-year-old skipper said.

Fernando Llorente of Tottenham Hotspur take son the Ajax defence during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final first leg match between Tottenham Hotspur and Ajax at at the Tottenham Hotspur...

Pochettino changed Tottenham’s shape midway through the first-half, strengthening the midfield by bringing on Moussa Sissoko for the stricken centre-back Jan Vertonghen.

The Frenchman helped Spurs to get on the ball after a torrid first half hour and De Ligt adds that he too gave a victorious Ajax side plenty to ponder.

“Moussa Sissoko did provide some dynamic, we had a hard time with that.”

Ajax forward David Neres challenges Tottenham midfielder Moussa Sissoko during the UEFA Champions League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Ajax Amsterdam at White Hart Lane, London on...

 

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